Questions? Ask Here!

Questions, by immrchris, Stock.xchng

If you have any specific questions, post them here. Feel free to leave any general comments, as well.

Other people moving to Caserma Ederle probably have the same questions, so I will try to answer them here.

I am not an official representative for any organization, but I will do my best to answer your question based on my personal experience and connect you to any resources I find.

Don’t want to post questions online? Use the contact form to email me!

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64 Comments on “Questions? Ask Here!”

  1. Shannon says:

    Hi Jen,
    I’m not Peggy but we returned from Italy a year ago. We moved there Dec of 2011 and at the time I had a 5yo,4yo,3yo and 14month old and a dog. My husband was DoD and I’d be happy to answer any questions that you might have if Peggy does not have time. (Last I read she was moving/transitioning back stateside). I also blogged about the entire move (before, during and after) on my personal blog, Loveable Chaos. I believe it’s still in the BlogRoll on Peggy’s site but you may have to search the word “Italy” because it is a family blog. And I don’t mean to overstep Peggy, just trying to help out–I still receive an email on this post from my questions 3 years ago 🙂

  2. Jen says:

    Hello,
    My husband and I and our two young sons (2 yo and 4 mo) may be PCS’ing to Vicenza in January 2015 for a DoD position. I have so many questions I don’t even know where to begin, but was wondering if you have a personal contact email I could send my list of questions, once I’m prepared? In the meantime, trying to get my bearings on where to live. We’d prefer less city living, with such little ones – any towns you can recommend within 20-30 mins. drive from base that would provide affordable single family homes (3-4 bedroom) with some quiet and green space? Thank you so much!

    • Shannon says:

      Jen, I replied but I guess it posted as a new comment above this comment. (I’m on my phone so it may be different).

      • Jen says:

        Thank you so much Shannon! I will definitely check out your blog and be in touch with questions. Lots of them, I am afraid 🙂 thank you again!

        Jen

  3. C4forever says:

    Please let me know how to get Marco Polo international airport in venice from the base by public transportation ? I heard that there is a shuttle bus from the base. And how much the cost? Thank u, Mimi.

  4. Marion says:

    Hello Peggy,

    Just wondering what area’s I should be looking at for housing. Safest and has teens. We are DoD civilians, so we would be private rental. Also, are there any websites I can check out in advance while I am still in the states for any of these rental properties?

    Thank you for your time,
    Marion

    • It is hard to say which area would be best for you. Most areas are fairly safe. There are scattered break-ins in many areas, but that does not necessarily mean the area is not safe. Most people do not have a problem, as long as they are careful with safety. The areas I like may not be what you would like. Longare, Camisano, and Grumolo are some of the areas I like. I don’t know the area west of Vicenza as well, but Creazzo, Caldagno and Costabissaro are all popular. They are closer to the Del Din base. The website is Off Post Housing. http://www.imcom-europe.army.mil/OPH/dusearch.aspx Good Luck on your move!

  5. Rachael says:

    Hello! We should be arriving in Italy the first part of June. We have little to no information as of now. We are currently in Seoul SK, and my husbands AKO is acting up, so we have no paperwork as of now either, yikes! I know a lot of people say don’t hold your breath as things an change quickly, which I understand, however this is my first true PCS with more information then I had when coming to Korea (I should have already warned you this is going to be long, sorry)

    So I am wondering the average time of CSP to get approved? Again I am new to all of this as he has only been in for 2.5 years, and Korea tends to have a different way of doing things. We are a family of four, just wondering the likely hood of us getting into the Villagio housing? I know it really does depend on other families coming in and coming out, just a general idea though.

    What is the elementary school like? I have son who will be going into 2nd grade. And I have no been able to access any military websites for Italy (again Korea, the VPN) do they have a pre-school? And also what is the likely hood, and average cost, that I could get my youngest in?

    I know I had a million more questions, but I think I will pace myself for now, and you will just get used to seeing (dreading) my face when it pops up! I am so grateful for your blog, and thank you in advance for any and all information! Have a great day!

    Rachael

    • Hi Rachael! Moving here is stressful! I think everything in Italy just takes a lot of time. I honestly believe command sponsorship is a case by case basis. If you have no one with special needs (EFMP Program), it usually doesn’t take as long. Our family had no problem with it, but some do. One of the things that seems to cause difficulty is if someone has serious Asthma. The pollution here can be really bad and people with breathing conditions may not do well with it.

      The availability of housing on Villagio just depends on when you arrive. If it is available, then you have no choice in living there. Many people want private rental, so when it comes time to visit with housing let them know it is what you want. June is peak PCS season, so you should have a good shot at Villagio housing.

      Vicenza Elementary School is good, as far as I am concerned. Some people do not like it, but I have had no problems. My son is in the Italian Immersion program. He has had pretty much had the same kiddos in his class for 4 years – as much as a military base allows, anyway. You can request it, if you want your kiddo to receive more instruction in Italian language and culture. Others tell me DODS Schools are not great, but I honestly don’t think it is so. You should be able to access that website at http://www.vice-es.eu.dodea.edu/ .

      They have different types of preschool. There is a preschool program that is called Sure Start. Kids are admitted based on parent rank/income. Soldiers’ kids that are E-4 and below are given preference in that program and there is no charge. There are part-time preschool programs sponsored by the CDC. You send your child for 3 hours either 2 or 3 days per week. You have to apply to that program through Parent Central Services (the CDC, basically.) The cost is based on income. There is also the Strong Beginnings Preschool, also a CDC program. It prepares kiddos for kindergarten. The program is 5 days for 3 or 5 hours per day (8:30 AM to 11:30 or 13:30). My youngest son is in this program and it is awesome. If you only need to get out once in awhile, you can use hourly care. It is $4/hour no matter what.

      You can use the email me button if you have questions that you do not want to post on the blog. Good luck in your move!
      Peggy

  6. Kayla says:

    Hey! There is no on post housing except the barracks. The Villagio allows dogs not sure how many. I know at least two. Then there is government leased housing in the economy and then there are private rentals with Italian landlords. Your best bet would be to join the Vicenza doggie page on Facebook. Plenty of people on there to help you out and they respond immediately. Good luck!

  7. Eric says:

    Is there a limit on the amount of dogs I can have living on post in Italy I have three dogs two mutts and a German shepherd

    • Kayla says:

      Hey! There is no on post housing except the barracks. The Villagio allows dogs not sure how many. I know at least two. Then there is government leased housing in the economy and then there are private rentals with Italian landlords. Your best bet would be to join the Vicenza doggie page on Facebook. Plenty of people on there to help you out and they respond immediately. Good luck!

  8. Kayla says:

    My husband and I (and our 5 month old and cat) will arrive in Venice on Dec 24. We have had no luck booking a pet friendly hotel…we don’t have a sponsor and we haven’t been contacted by the people that are moving us. I’m freaking out….help! We are on Fort Bragg, NC.

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Hi Kayla! YIKES! No sponsor is not a good thing. I would definitely request a spouse sponsor, who could help you out some. You can do this by emailing sponsorshipvicenza@gmail.com and letting them know your situation is a bit urgent. Your husband’s unit should have gotten you a sponsor, but I know it doesn’t always work out that way. I’d have him contact them again, it never hurts to try.

      As far as the hotel, I’d call the Ederle Inn (039-0444-71-8034 or 8035) and make sure you get put on the waitlist. Then if someone cancels or moves out of the inn, you may be able to get a room. If not, they should be able to help you get a room at another hotel. They are supposed to do so if there is no room there. If not there is a list of kennels at this link: http://www.vicenzamwr.com/pdfs/Kennels%20in%20Vicenza.pdf Facebook has a “Vicenza Doggy Club” page that may have someone on it to take care of your kitty, if you are brave enough to go that route.

      Not sure if you have the schedule for the shuttle that takes you from the airport to post. It runs to the Ederle Inn, if you can get in there. Just look for the big yellow sign off to the right of where you exit the gate and there should be someone sitting there, if not you can use the phone to call someone. Hopefully, you will be given a contact soon! Dec 24 is coming fast!

      Talk to your local transportation office about the movers. If you have the name of the movers, call them and harass ask them nicely to get on the stick. It takes about 6 weeks or more to get your things, so it will be awhile before you have your things when you arrive. (You will get loaner furniture to get you through, though.)

      Let me know how this goes! I know this is probably not enough help, but I hope it is some. The travel is one of the most stressful parts of the whole PCS to Italy, so I hope it starts getting better for you. I will help if I can!

      I hope you hear from your moving company soon and get a sponsor, too. These things will make it easier and less stressful.

  9. Nicole says:

    Hi,
    I want to
    Move over there with my husband but If I do so it will add an extra year for him to be there. Is there any way around that?!
    Thanks!

    • Peg Crippen says:

      As far as I know, the only way to do a two year tour is for the soldier (or federal employee) to be unaccompanied. I have known wives who come and stay for the summer or over the holidays and then flew back home to the U.S. As far as I know, you’d have to pay for the trips. (Unless you fly with your husband on Space A flights.) The only way to know for sure is to speak to your command, though. You might like living in Italy, though, so if you want to come with your husband a year extra might not be as bad as the separation. Good luck!

  10. Toka Trau says:

    Hi Peg,

    My family and I are expected to move to Vicenza in July. In researching where to live, I have a few questions listed below.

    1. Do you recommend using an agent vs. using the housing office and the automated military housing website?

    2. Internet Connectivity – I will be working at home and will be corresponding daily with personnel in the US;  a strong internet connectivity is extremely important. Will  different neighborhoods/type of houses provide variation of internet connectivity? What are the supporting factors/service we would have to look for in ensuring the property will have the support for a strong internet connectivity?
    3. Utilities – I see that some rentals include some utilities but not all. Can you tell me what all the utilities are normally needed and an estimate of the cost for these utilities for  let’s say a single family home with 3 Bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. We are trying to determine as best as we can how much of a cushion we should reserve for utilities expenses. This will give us a better estimate of how much we can afford with the property itself.

    Thanks!

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Hello! I will answer your questions the best I can! Every family has a bit difference experience, so yours won’t necessarily be the same as others. (1) I would only use an agent if you have very specific housing needs and are willing to spend the money to support those needs. Any home you find through an agent will still have to go through the housing office to get approved, as I understand. If the landlord and property are not approved, it affects your housing allowance. I know of families that have used an agent, but it extends the length of time to move into a house. When the family moved into the house, they were very happy with it, but it took longer. The government only pays for temporary quarters (motel) a certain length of time, if it takes longer then it is on your dime. (2) Internet is definitely something that seems to be affected by location. Some of the towns still do not have high speed internet and have spotty service, from what I have heard in passing. We have Telecom Italia and have had few problems, we pay the higher rate for faster service. I do not think the higher speed is available everywhere. The towns that seem to have problems are the towns that are further out in the hills and the mountains, but I can’t remember which towns were the ones with slow internet. Some people have gone to using satellite internet, as well. We just use DSL. The time it takes to get internet installed can be frustrating. Some people have waited months for theirs to be installed. Moving in July or August, I would expect to wait because these are the months that most Italians take vacation time. Any kind of service is extremely slow during this time. (3) Utilities are high. I have heard of some people getting bills of several thousand euro during the winter months. Our average monthly bill last year for a small 3 bedroom, 2 bath home is around 500 euro for water, garbage, electricity and gas. It might be more this year as our gas bills have gone up considerably for some reason. Older houses and villas seem to have much higher utility bills. Just for your knowledge, the bills come every other month (or longer) and sometimes are estimated rather than actual amounts, so utilities are a royal pain if you are a civilian who has to do reconciliation. Good luck with your move! Peggy

      • Toka Trau says:

        Thank you Peggy for your reply. It definitely gave me a better insight! As you mentioned regarding the Internet, it may take some time to get the service installed. Since I will have to work immediately when I arrived, is there any place on base or off that offer free wifi or even if i can hard wire in? I need to be connected to the Internet somehow in waiting for connectivity at home. I wasn’t sure if there are places like here in the US where u can walk into any coffee houses and use their Internet.

      • Peg Crippen says:

        There is free internet on post. You can go to the ACS Building or the library, and possibly Burger King. There is paid internet at the bowling alley on post. There are local internet cafes as well. If you frequent a coffee bar or restaurant, they will sometimes give you their password so you can use their wireless for free, at least they have done this for us in the past.

      • Toka Trau says:

        That’s great to know! Thanks again for being so helpful. I do have another question that is rather random. My daughter been asking for a dog. I am considering buying her one but wanted to wait until we get situated with our housing first. Do u know the process of purchasing a dog over there? Is it as easy and are the selection and cost similiar as in the US. I wasn’t sure if it was easier to purchase one in the US and bringing it over. Ideally, I would like to wait until we get over there.

      • Peg Crippen says:

        Bringing a dog here is not too difficult, but the timing might be a deciding factor. If you purchase a large dog and have to travel during the summer months, you might not be able to bring your dog over on a commercial aircraft because of the heat embargo. We ended up leaving our dog in the United States because we were given bad information by the airline that we would be able to bring our dog, then the airline would not accept her as freight on the day we travelled. I do not know if the selection of dogs here are the same, but a lot of people seem to buy or adopt dogs while they are here. There is even a facebook group called “Vicenza Doggie Club” that was started by Americans here if you want to ask specific questions. Everything seems to be more expensive here, so I am sure a dog would be a little bit more expensive than in the U.S. You would not be paying to ship an animal, so it would likely even out in the cost. Hope that helped some.

      • Toka Trau says:

        Peggy, I have another question… Sorry ! I’m going to visit for a wknd in a few weeks to check out the neighborhoods. What are the best airports to fly in/out of Vicenza coming frm Munich Germany..

      • Peg Crippen says:

        I have only flown in and out of Venice Marco Polo. You might be able to get cheaper flights coming into Venice Treviso or Verona. There are cheaper flights to and from Milan, but it is a couple of hours away! Good luck!

  11. Ann says:

    Again, great advice. Thanks so much. I’ll figure it out some time this week and I’ll post anything I learned for other users who might have had the same questions as I did.

  12. Ann says:

    Hi there Peg,

    I recently moved to Italy a few weeks ago. I’m waiting for my car to be delivered and was wondering how the bus transportation to the base runs here. I’ve taken public transportation in the U.K. before, but I was a student then and had a student bus pass that I simply showed to the bus driver. I’ve heard that you can purchase tickets on some buses, but not all buses allow you to do this. I’ve also read online that there are places that sell tickets. However, I’m not sure where to buy bus tickets off of the base. Is there any information you can give me on where to purchase tickets and general information on riding buses here to Caserma Ederle? I’ve heard that you must get dropped off near “Chapel Gate” or “Gate 2”? I’m very new at this; any information could help me!

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Hello Ann.
      If you want to buy bus tickets, the easiest place to get them on-post is the Ederle Inn. They are a little bit more expensive than they are off-post, I have heard. You can by tickets at about any tabbacheria (tobacco shops) or newspaper stands. If you walk out the chapel gate and cross the street to the left, there is a sporting goods store that sells tickets. I honestly can’t remember the price, because I haven’t taken the bus a lot. I have gotten tickets at the sporting goods store and at a newspaper stand, also. Just ask for “un biglietto.”

      The stop you will get on or off for post is just outside of the Chapel Gate. It is called the Stanga neighborhood or Stanga stop, if I am not mistaken. You can kind of figure out a bus schedule by reading the signs at the stop. The bus that runs past post is the #1 bus. Just make sure you get on the #1 bus to get back to post, otherwise you might end up somewhere you don’t want to be! 🙂 I use google translate a lot to try and understand the websites with information in Italian, so you can usually figure out some of the schedules that way, too.

      It is scary the first time you try and figure it out, but it is not hard to do once you figure out where you need to get on and get off. Watch out for the crowds if you go downtown on Thursday market day. It is very crowded then! Good luck! Peggy

      • Ann says:

        Thanks Peggy, you were so quick with your reply and very helpful indeed. I didn’t know that they sold tickets at the Ederle Inn as well. Thanks for the advice about Thursdays, too. Just a few more questions and I’ll be done!: If I have to take 3 buses to get to post and 3 buses back from the post, should I buy 6 bus tickets? I ask because I heard that you must validate your ticket upon entering the bus, but if you are riding another bus/other buses within a certain time frame stamped on your ticket, you do not need to validate a separate ticket. Is this correct? Also do you have any websites you can refer me to for bus schedules for the #1 bus? THANK YOU!!

      • Peg Crippen says:

        Hi Ann! I just happened to be online. So I will give you the information I have. The two bus sites I know are AIM http://www.aim-mobilita.it/ which is the in-town bus that runs in Vicenza and FTV http://www.ftv.vi.it/a_ITA_4_1.html which runs to the surrounding communities. You have to download a pdf schedule book from the FTV website to get schedules.

        As I understand, you have 90 minutes on a ticket. So if you are getting right on and off the bus, you should’t need another ticket unless you are changing from a regional bus to a local bus. You can purchase tickets that are good for one or two days, so you could do that as well. I can’t remember if you can get those everywhere or only downtown at the main bus station. If you get it good and figured out, let me know. I am not so good at navigating by bus! Good luck!

  13. Mari says:

    Hello Peg,

    I’m hoping you can give me some suggestions. We arrived here in Italy 3 weeks ago and dealing with housing has made my experience living here horrible. Its me , my husband and my teenage daughter. I wish there is some way that when you get orders overseas there is some kind of briefing to soldiers about what to expect. We are told here in Italy there is a mandatory govt housing policy and my family are having to suffer and be forced to live in whatever they have available. When we first arrived we were told nothing was available to come back next week and sure enough the most smallest 3rd floor apartment was available. We are told if we decline, our TLA and housing allowance will be taken. We declined the first one and second one due to the properties just didn’t meet our needs. Other families with children and without children living here at the hotel have the option to private rental which gives them option to choose there house. This is demoralizing to us to hear everyone else was given the choice. We somehow got stuck in this mandatory housing but feel we are being shown leftovers that others have turned down and is not fair. Any suggestions?

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Hi Mari! I am so sorry your experience has been horrible. I hate to hear it. Unfortunately, with the federal budget cuts, I think it is becoming more common that people are rushed to make a housing decision to save money spent on temporary quarters. Before all this budget crisis started I know families that lived at the Ederle Inn for over two months.

      I am not a housing expert, by any means. We are civilian, so my experience is different. We go straight to private-leased quarters. I know that for active-duty families Villagio is mandatory if there is a unit available. There is no choice but to take a unit there if one is open. Usually there are families who want to live on-post and want Villagio, so I have never heard of anyone not having any other choices. Then you have to look at govt-leased housing, then private rental. Most active-duty families I know around my area (Camisano) are in government-lease housing. The houses they live in are all nearly new.

      I wish I had some great idea to help out. Unfortunately, I’m guessing your small family size is giving you fewer choices. Make sure you go on the AHRN website http://www.ahrn.com/ and check what is available yourself. You might talk to some of the other families at the hotel and see who they are dealing with at housing that might be easier to work with. Make a list of all your questions so you can ask them over and over until you can understand why they are telling you what they are. That is what I would do. Sometimes being a pain in the neck will make them see your point more clearly! 🙂

      Good luck in figuring this out. I know it is not good to think about living in a house you don’t like for that many years! My thoughts are with you!

  14. Marissa says:

    How do I get a sergento (sorry I know that is spelled wrong)? And I’ve been over in Italy for about 5 months now and still have no idea how to get our things over. They are just sitting back in the states. Because I came over before I got my no-fee passport and my parents sent it over when they received it!

    And is it true, that once your over here and your husband goes on deployment your not allowed to go home? We have private rental because to get it through the govn’t, well lets just say that i wouldn’t have moved over here for two years! and that isn’t happening! Because I heard if you go home for the duration of your husband’s deployment they will take away your allowances? and they don’t need to inform you about it either?

    • Peg Crippen says:

      You have to go to the sogiorno office on post to apply for a sogiorno. It is the yellow building next to the Ederle Inn. I would talk to them as quick as you can. If you have command sponsorship, it is just a matter of filling out paperwork. If not, I really am not sure how to go about it. You are supposed to have one within a few weeks of you getting here. I know we did not meet the deadline, because we did not get housing as quick as the requirement.

      You’d have to talk to the transportation office to talk about moving things. I don’t know how they will handle it. I think it depends on who you talk to most of the time. The number to transportation is 0444-71-6925.Good luck. I had a horrible experience with movers on the U.S. side, so I hope you will have better.

      I know a lot of people go home over deployments. I can’t say whether they let the unit know that it was what they did. I think if you are getting housing allowance and you are not paying for housing in Italy and they discover it, you will end up paying it all back and it would be a lot of trouble. My guess is if they know they will change your entitlements to reflect that you are living in the U.S.

      Perhaps you can return to the U.S. over deployment then return when he comes back and take care of the sogiorno and the household goods at the same time. It might be easier than taking care of it once, then doing it all over again.

      My disclaimer is that I am here because my husband is a DOD Civilian. He does deploy and has things in common, but the rules are not always the same. So I hope this is helpful in some way.

  15. Bekki says:

    Peg,

    Do you know if DOD Civilians pcsing to Vincenza are authorized base housing? Also, can you give me a bal park on how much a 3 or 4 Bedroom apt/villa would cost (roughly)? I have 5 children ages 19 to 1 and want to take as much of the guessing out the move.

    Thank you in advance,

    Bekki

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Bekki,
      As far as I know, civilians are only authorized private rentals. I have not called housing to verify this, though. Housing is expensive. It depends on what community you live in and if the house is a villa or an apartment. We live in a duplex that is a small 3 Bedroom. It is about 1450 Euro a month, which is about $1800. We are in a mid-range house. I know people who live in larger villas that pay around 2000 Euro a month. It may take awhile to find a 4 bedroom. They are less common than 3 bedrooms. Good luck on your move. If you want an idea on what is available, make sure you look at the housing website. It lists all the available housing and prices. Good luck on your move. Peggy

      • mom2tictacs says:

        Now that we’re here, I thought I’d chime in on this…I have four kids (all age 5 and under) and we are DOD civilians as well. We only got the choice to see private rentals, which was almost everything on the AHRN website. Peggy is right, it is hard to find anything over 3 bedroom and a lot of the homes with more bedrooms are teeny tiny rooms. We saw 2 and passed on them for this reason. The house we ended up taking and now live in was listed on ahrn as a 4 bedroom, however it actually had six. One is downstairs (all other bedrooms are upstairs) and one is off the kitchen (we use as an office). Our rent is 1800euro or about $2250. While it sounds high, it’s within our LQA allotment and is perfect for our family. We are 5 miles from post, it takes around 20mins to get there from here. We have a big yard, could have our dog and we have a house, not an apartment or duplex. Overall very happy!!

  16. Jose says:

    Hello Peggy,

    I read in one of your post about others shipping a second vehicle space-a. Do you know what office I would contact about this because this is the first I’ve heard of this and would love to ship my classic over as well as my daily driver. Thanks, Jose.

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Jose, I would contact your Transportation Office. When I moved, there was a link for shipping a second POV space A on the American Auto Logistics – Where’s my POV website. It is no longer there, so maybe they don’t do it. I know many people have two cars, so it can be done. Hopefully, your transportation office can recommend something. If you find out, can you come back here and share it. I am sure many people have this same question. Thanks and good luck!

  17. jeff says:

    Peg,

    might pcs to vicenza and was wondering if anyone knows the max amount of pets you can ship to italy. I saw the website said 2 pets, but does that mean 2 will be paid for by transportation and you can ship another one at your expense or does that mean you can have only a maximum of 2 pets while stationed in Italy. thanks

    • Peg Crippen says:

      As I understand it, the govt. will only pay to have two animals shipped. After that, you pay. I have friend that has four animals and shipped them all. I am not sure of the logistics, but I know they paid to get their large dog here. They ended up shipping her through Delta and went to Milan to pick her up. Good luck!

  18. Riann Doyle says:

    One more question and then I promise, I’ll stop. My husband heard word that his clinic might be on Dal Molin. I am finding very little about it, other than there have been a lot of protests against it. I can’t find a good map or really any information other than that it will house the German component when they consolidate the 173rd. I read one place that it was 5 min from main post, another that it was 20-30 min away. Do you know where it is? My reasoning is that we will want to live close to his work, however, I know I’ll probably spend a lot of time on post, so don’t want to live far from there either. So if the two are miles apart, do we aim to live in the middle (although I know housing will put us in what’s available)? Anyway, that’s why I am trying to find out where it is! Should’ve been easy, huh? Thanks again for your help!

  19. This is a crazy, confusing question, but would love your advice. My hubby is PCS’ing there and will deploy essentially 3-6 months after arrival. I am already EXTREMELY apprehensive about living there, and the thought of doing it alone after only a few months terrifies me! So my thought is this… send his as a geographical bachelor, so we can stay in the states for his deployment and we will meet him there afterward. However, I don’t want to be separated for those 3-6 months on top of a deployment. I was thinking about me and the kids coming out on our tourist visas and staying there (on our own dollar) and doing a short term furnished rental. We’ve done this numerous times on the past for his TDY’s- but NEVER overseas! But are there any short term rental places? In the states, I could look at vacation homesites or craigslist, but there… no idea on how to find anything like that. I wouldn’t even know how to communicate with the landlord! Do you think this would even be feasible to do?
    (And on a side note, thanks for the car seat info! I, too, have four kids, so I need all the family information too!)

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Riann,
      I can imagine you are apprehensive about living here alone, especially with kids. I will say that the American community is pretty supportive. Many of the families are in the same circumstance, so there are resources available to help you through the deployment, but I am sure you know that.

      It would be very expensive to live here with no adjustment for the cost of living. Our rent is double what our house payment is in the U.S. and we chose a less expensive rental. School might be an issue depending on the age of your kids. Although there is a strong homeschooling community here.

      There are real estate agents around that help people find housing, the one I know about is http://housinginvicenzaitaly.com/. I have a friend that used a private real estate agent, but I can not find the information. If I do, I will post again. Perhaps Vacation Rental by Owner would have some rentals for the amount of time you are looking.

      Good luck in making your decision. It has to be tough.

  20. mom2tictacs says:

    Hi Peggy!
    I find myself reading and re-reading your blog in preparation for our move! I was wondering, what are the car seat restrictions/requirements in Italy for children? I know we’re going to ship our van (I have 4 kids under 5, so no choice really) but didn’t know what to do with their car seats. I didn’t know if I should have them left in the van or brought with on the plane, sent with household belongings? An odd question, I know but I’m trying to get prepared. Also are their specific neighborhoods you would recommend for families with young children? Thank you!

    • Peg Crippen says:

      I actually shipped my car with the car seat in it. You can fly with car seats, but it may be difficult to get through the airport with several different car seats. You can borrow car seats at ACS to use until your car gets here, because that is what I did. Your household goods may not get here for a few weeks, so I would ship them with the van if you haven’t already shipped it. If you have already shipped the van,definitely put the seats in your vehicle.

      I don’t know every neighborhood around Vicenza, but I can say I love Camisano and have friends that love Grumolo, Torri and Quinto Vicentino. I know that in Vicenza there is less likelihood that a yard will be part of your rental. The villages outside of Vicenza are better because they have bigger yards and are more safe ( in my opinion). You will have to drive more to live in these towns, though.

      • mom2tictacs says:

        Thank you so much! I tried researching and couldn’t come up with any answers. We have not shipped the van yet so this is perfect. In fact we don’t have a start/move date yet, we JUST found out that he officially got the position and that we are really moving to Italy. *eek!* Now my mind is going nuts thinking of all the things that need done and looking at places on AHRN website.

  21. Bill says:

    Peggy,

    We were stationed in Italy a few years ago and bought wonderful pieces of furniture from the, “chicken man”. During our last PCS move a bunch of the pieces were destroyed and I have a feeling the moving company is going to want a receipt of estimate. I’ve looked around on line and have been able to find his address and phone number, but not an email. Do you happen to know what it is? I have seen you reference him in your blog.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Bill

  22. Christina says:

    My brother just arrived in Vicenza this week for a 3 year tour. He is single but will be required to find off base housing. What are some nice areas off base that would be great for a single soldier? He is not a party guy, but he needs opportunities to meet others.

    • Peg Crippen says:

      If I was single, I’d live in Vicenza downtown. However, there are a lot of younger Americans living in Torri (Del Quartesolo). Base is so small that he will have a lot of opportunities to meet people. There is an organization called BOSS (Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers) that seems to be very active here. He might want to check into that.
      Hope you have an opportunity to visit him here. It is beautiful!
      Peggy

  23. Vasty says:

    Peggy,
    I read your blog about Gypsy break ins, and trying not freak out! My husband, daughter and I will be PCS’in there in spring of next, and would like to live on post, but know the space is limited. I have started looking on the AHRN site for homes, but it’s difficult because I do not know what areas are nice and “safe”. Are you able to share some areas that fit those requirments?

    Thanks for your help,
    Vasty

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Vasty,
      I don’t think that you need to worry so much about Gypsy break-ins. I have never felt unsafe where I live. When you look at houses, be aware of the surroundings. Look for Gypsy encampments around the edges of town. Gypsies tend to live out of vans or RV’s and find an out of the way road to park them. I see them from the highway on the outskirts of Vicenza. Sometimes the camps are temporary, others seem to always be there. I don’t know all of the areas around Vicenza, so I can’t speak to all of the areas. I know people who live in Torri (Del Quartesolo), Camisano (Vicentino), Marola, Quinto Vicentino and Grumolo (Della Abbedesse). All of these areas are west of Vicenza and have populations of Americans that like living there. There are areas east of the city that people love living in as well, but I am not familiar with them. Common sense will tell you whether you feel comfortable in an area. I would say make sure you have a good landlord, because they will be a great help no matter where you live. My landlord is really hands off, but others I know have landlords they have become great friends with and it will make your experience in Italy much more positive. I will try and talk more about safety in a post soon!

  24. Chul-Soo Jo says:

    Peggy, I’m so glad to find your blog. I’m an Army Daddy, and my son will just get out of the AIT amd will be deployed to Vicenze next month, and I’m wondering if he should bring his car over there. How inconvenient is it living there without a car?
    Do you recommend to bring his car with him? Thanks for your advice…

    • Peg Crippen says:

      If your son is living in single soldier quarters, he will be able to survive fine without a car. Post is small and the commissary and PX are right there. There is a bus that goes to downtown and around the area and trains if he wants to travel or sight see. It is expensive to have a car here. Insurance is high priced and even the gas ration coupons are a bit expensive.

      I live off post and have to drive a good deal. My family and I have done a lot of day trips around the area, so we need a car. We get by on only one car, because I am trying to save money. It is really a personal choice. Hope that helped some!

  25. Rick Trevino says:

    Peggy,

    When your car was shipped, where did you pick it up from? Also, since we have read that Italian homes don’t have closets, that wardrobes were used. Do you recommend us buying a few here in the States and having them shipped with our HHG? Or should we wait and buy them from the PX in Italy? We are just trying to prepare and save money on costs and selections.

    • Peg Crippen says:

      There is a facility just outside of Vicenza that you pick up your car. It was pretty easy, the hard thing was waiting for the car to arrive! : )

      The Army will issue you a certain number of wardrobes here. If you want a specific type or quality of wardrobe, you may want to buy it and ship it. The movers are not always kind to what you move, though. Another option is to wait until you get here and buy wardrobes from the PX, Ikea or one of the many local businesses. We just took the ones from the Army, because we are not likely to ever use them again. I have seen some really nice high quality wardrobes that people have purchased, though.
      Good luck in your move.

  26. Andre says:

    Peggy,

    Recently the car I’ve been using has broken down and I’m going to have to junk it. I need a new car, but I’m unclear about shipping a POV. I read the blog you posted about PCSing to italy, but I’ll be ETSing soon and I didn’t bring a POV over when I came to Italy. Someone told me that if I didn’t bring one with me, I can’t take one home. So even though I would rather buy a nicer car that would last me a bit and just take it back with me, but I’m reluctant because I don’t just want to have to turn around and sell it/waste money and I keep getting the run-around so I don’t know who to trust. If you have any information on this can you please help?

    Thanks

    Andre

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Andre,
      I honestly am not sure of the answer to your question. I would think the transportation office could give you a square answer, but then again it is the Army, so who knows… I have friends who bought a car while here and paid to have one shipped space A in addition to the one the Army shipped. I think it cost about $700. I will try and find out the answer, though. I’ll post it if I find out.

  27. Destiny Jeffries says:

    So happy I came across this blog I will be PCSing to Vicenza late summer and I am super excited. I’ve visited Italy before and when I when I found out they had slots for me I was all over it. I plan on checking this blog frequently for new updates.

    Thanks

    Destiny

    • Peg Crippen says:

      Destiny, thanks for visiting my blog. I hope I am posting something helpful. Most of what I post comes from my experience or from discussions I have with others who live here. I think this area is great for families, but would be even more fun for younger people without kids. Good luck on your PCS!