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How to save on food in Italy?

Remember that you are traveling in the most famous country in the world when it comes to food, so it is important to find a balance between what you will choose to eat! Today you are going to learn how to eat in a low cost way, but without leaving the quality of what you’re eating behind! Let's check the tips?

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How to save on food in Italy?

There are so many ways to save, but that doesn’t necessarily mean not eating well. Here you will have all the tips and information to know how to save with food in Italy. Stay with us and make the best of the country in a boot shape! Here at Your Travel to Italy with Ana Patricia you make the trip of your dreams!!! ALSO: see our “Accommodation in Italy – Tips for your holidays!”

See our Food Segment for tips on restaurants in the main Italian cities, how to save money, where to go for Happy Hour, better wineries and much more, just click on the link below BEST TIPS ON FOOD IN ITALY

1) How to save on food in Italy? WATER

Water (acqua): Almost all Italian cities have natural and pure water sources. Everywhere you can see the fountains and someone drinking water there. That is why it is important to always have a bottle of water with you. All Italians do it this way because buying a bottle of water in tourist places can cost up to 5 Euros! Also read: What to do in Italy in 10 days?

2) How to save on food in Italy? BREAKFAST

Breakfast (colazione): If you want to try a typical Italian breakfast, it can be a good experience. Make a “Italian” day and have your breakfast at a bar, it’s delicious and usually costs less than 3 euros. Try a “cappuccino with a cornetto”. Also read: What are the 20 most visited cities in Italy?

3) How to save on food in Italy? SUPERMARKETS / FOOD FAIRS

Supermarkets (supermercati) or food fairs: A great alternative to save money is to buy sandwiches and various snacks to eat.


  • To get an idea of how much you’ll spend in a restaurant, just look at the price list before you enter. Bars, restaurants and accommodations are required to display it outside the establishment. To save money you can use the counter, as service at the counter is always cheaper than the service at the table.
  • Some wines can be very expensive. If you don’t want surprises, ask for the “carta dei vini” (the wine menu) to know the prices. Usually the ‘house wine’ is more economic and really good!
  • Remember that in Italy, the tip is appreciated, but not obligatory.

4) How to save on food in Italy? FOOD OPTIONS

Here are some options on how to save on food. We will detail all the options for you to prepare for your trip.

Tourist Menu

There are many restaurants that offer the option of the “Tourist Menu” which is usually: “un antipasto (starter), primo (pasta) secondo (meat, fish etc) water and the house wine.” Normally the price is between 8 to 15 euros, it depends on the neighborhood where you will be. A tourist menu with 20 euros is a great cost benefit between economy and quality.

Pizzerie a Taglio (Sliced pizza)

There are hundreds of Pizzerie a Taglio. How does work? Well, you go in and choose a piece of pizza (there are many types of pizza displayed on the counter) and eat it there (usually standing) or while you walk appreciating the city view. You can also try the “rustici” which are similar to snacks. Pizza is paid by weight, but usually for a piece of pizza you will pay between 1.50 and 3 Euros. It always depends on the types of topping you choose. The “rusticis” usually cost between 1 and 2 EUR/unit.


The Kebab is an economical and delicious option; they are Arabic, Persian or Turkish sandwiches with lots of turkey and chicken meat and salad inside! Some are served with chips! Average price 3,50 – 4 euros. But it’s worth a full meal.


Generally a menu costs between 5 – 7 euros. That’s the tip for those who like: go for fastfood! After all I have to put all the options for you, but make the most of Italian cuisine and remember that those places have different menus in different countries, so go for an Italian option in their menu! 😉

Happy hour!

The Happy Hour is an excellent option to save a dinner. It is usually between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m.. You pay a price for a drink (alcoholic, non-alcoholic) that is served with a few things to eat. Depending on the place you can eat so much that it can certainly be considered as a dinner, they serve the finger food in a buffet system! This “happy-hour” is usually done in bars, but the best are those in pubs.


I’d like to say that it’s important not only to think about saving when it comes to Italian food and wine. You absolutely must, at least once, taste the typical dishes of each city you’re visiting and obviously the local wines. Most of the ‘trattorias’ are not so expensive. Pizzas almost always cost less than 10 euros, it all depends on the toppings you choose.

Full Meal

The “primi” and the “secondi” go from 7 to 16 euros. The vino bianco (white wine) costs about 10 euros the bottle and that rosso (red wine) around 20 euros the bottle, but certainly worth it. Obviously we are talking about a normal wine, a famous label wine you will hardly find for less than 40 euros.

Important Tips

I always advise to see the price on the menu before ordering, in case you don’t have it on the menu, ask the price to not run the risk of reaching the table with a bottle of wine of 100 euros or a plate with an exaggerated price. Many restaurants offer the tourist menu which is usually traditional dishes or local specialties prepared with seasonal products. Just ask: quanto costa questo? (how much is it?)

Besides, I mainly suggest you to run away from restaurants located in tourist areas, sometimes walking 500 meters you will be able to find small restaurants that will surprise you and a very important thing, the fuller you find the restaurant, the greater the possibility of eating well. Escape from empty restaurants or from restaurants where a person stands in front calling you in, because if the food was good, believe me, nobody would call you in!


In short, it is possible to feed yourself very well by spending relatively little! An average expenditure for a complete lunch/dinner (antipasto, main course, dessert and ¼ of wine) is between 15 and 25 Euros, depending on the city and the chosen restaurant. What if I just have a snack? An average spending would be between 7 and 10 Euros per person.

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