• CONTACT US if you have any problems registering for the forums.

Finally returning to Italy!

Mom83

100+ Posts
I finally pulled the trigger and made plans for us to return to Italy this October! I have a villa in the southern Chianti region of Tuscany reserved for a week and an apartment in Rome reserved for 5 nights following our stay in Tuscany. We have stayed in both the Tuscany villa and the Rome apartment several times before, so I was so pleased that they were both available for our dates...it is so much easier dealing with people with whom you have worked before.
I put a 3 day “Fare Lock” on 2 United business class tickets (IAD to FCO nonstop) yesterday until I was sure of our accommodations...I just need to finalize that purchase today or tomorrow. Wow, have airfares gone up substantially from what we paid in April 2020...our trip that was canceled due to Covid. By looking at different arrival/departure dates, I was able to get an acceptable fare (barely!) for me, but I had to pay quite a bit more for my husband’s ticket as I got the last ticket available at the lower fare. My husband pointed out that we have not traveled anywhere internationally in 2 years, so the higher airfares are very acceptable to him...he is just so eager to go anywhere!
Now, we just have to reserve the rental car for the week we are in Tuscany...I know that will be sticker shock also. We normally pick up the car at FCO upon arrival and return it to Termini before our stay in Rome.
My only hope now is that the Covid testing requirement for returning to the US might be lifted by then...that has been my only hesitation in making the plans for this trip as it certainly complicates matters if you contract Covid while in Italy.
It is just so nice to finally be planning to return to Italy again!
 

Alpinista

100+ Posts
Will be great to be back!! We normally use Europcar for our trips, but had an eye-popping moment when we saw the cost this year. Went to Avis and got a substantially better rate (for a 2 month rental). We were in Italy last September (Lucca) and the covid testing was pretty easy to schedule and quick to get done. In past years, we've often seen rate changes for rental cars, so would keep an eye out and cancel/rebook if you see an improvement.

BTW, I'm hearing that the new United lounge at IAD is a huge improvement over the past accommodations, so will be interesting to check that out.
 

Mom83

100+ Posts
Thanks for the information, Alpinista! I believe we used Avis for our last Italy visit, but I know we have used Hertz and Europcar before, too. I will start checking rates for a car on Monday, but I will also keep checking to see if rates drop at all before we go. I had heard that getting Covid tested in Italy right now is pretty easy...my hesitation was being “stuck” there if, by chance, one of us picks up Covid during our visit and tests positive when we are trying to fly home to the US. We finally decided that, even if the testing requirement is still in effect in October, we are going to chance it....otherwise, who knows when we would ultimately go.
We live in NE Ohio...there are no nonstop flights to Rome from Cleveland. In the past, we have always driven 2 hours to Detroit to get a Delta nonstop to Rome, but now Detroit no longer has nonstop flights to Rome either. So, we will drive 6 hours to our daughter’s house in Arlington, VA and fly nonstop to Rome from Dulles. This works out well, as we would be driving here anyway in October to celebrate our granddaughter’s third birthday and see our newborn grandson again.
We will definitely check out the new United lounge at Dulles and report back! Do you know if business class gains you access to it? I can check with my nephew...he is a United pilot and is always giving us lounge passes.
 

Alpinista

100+ Posts
Business class gets you access to the lounge. We use the Chase Visa United Club MileagePlus card which also provides access.


If you have not flown United from Dulles, the international/priority counter is accessed by going past the lines of counters nearest the entry doors and proceeding towards the TSA checkpoints. Make a little U-Turn when you get by the arrivals/departures board and the United priority check-in will be there for you. We fly in May and September most years and have seldom found any lines at business class check-in. If you have Global Entry or TSA Pre-check, it is pretty much walking speed from check-in to the lounge (which is a little bit of a hike, but very little time needed to get from curbside drop-off to having a seat in the lounge).

We also live in Arlington (Crystal City), btw.
 
Last edited:

Mom83

100+ Posts
Business class gets you access to the lounge. We use the Chase Visa United Club MileagePlus card which also provides access.


If you have not flown United from Dulles, the international/priority access counter is accessed by going past the lines of counters nearest the entry doors and proceeding towards the TSA checkpoints. Make a little U-Turn when you get by the arrivals/departures board and the United priority check-in will be there for you. We fly in May and September most years and have seldom found any lines at business class check-in. If you have Global Entry or TSA Pre-check, it is pretty much walking speed from check-in to the lounge (which is a little bit of a hike, but very little time needed to get from curbside drop-off to having a seat in the lounge).

We also live in Arlington (Crystal City), btw.
Thank you so much for those detailed directions to the lounge! We have those Chase Visa cards too, but we are also flying business class so we should be good to get in.
We both have Global Entry and Clear accounts...anything that makes getting through security easier and faster is a positive.
We have not traveled internationally since 2018..that year we traveled to Italy in March, Spain in April, Canada in July, and the UK in October. Our daughter had our first grandchild in late October 2019, so we stayed home that year other than my daughter’s and my annual summer trip to Canada. We were all set for 2 weeks in Tuscany in April 2020...then Covid hit and everything was canceled. So, we are very eager to get back to traveling again! We are “seniors” and not getting any younger!! Our passports were getting moldy!
Our daughter and family live in the Arlington Forest area. We are here now for the Easter weekend...such a beautiful, albeit chilly, day! You are so lucky to live near Dulles with nonstop flights to so many more places than we have in Cleveland.
 

Alpinista

100+ Posts
1650245720742.png

Apologies, but I was an IT person when I was still a productive member of society and am obsessed with proper documentation ;-) Ticket counter 4 in the photo holds the United stations. The back side of the blue area is for priority check-in (business class).
 

How to Find Information

Search using the search button in the upper right. Search all forums or current forum by keyword or member. Advanced search gives you more options.

Filter forum threads using the filter pulldown above the threads. Filter by prefix, member, date. Or click on a thread title prefix to see all threads with that prefix.

Recommended Travel Guides

52 Things to See and Do in Basilicata by Valerie Fortney
Italian Food & Life Rules by Ann Reavis
Italian Food Decoder App by Dana Facaros, Michael Pauls
How to Be an American in Italy by Jessica Scott Romano

Share this page

Top