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Going to Venice, Lake Garda, Dolomites - Idiosyncrasies?

Going to Venice, Lake Garda, Dolomites - Idiosyncrasies?

Aug 24th, 2009, 06:14 AM
  #1  
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Going to Venice, Lake Garda, Dolomites - Idiosyncrasies?

I know there's a cover charge of about 1.2 - 2 Euros at Venetian restaurants for meals, but I read a comment from someone recently who was in the Lake Garda/Sirmione area who said that when she and hubby went to a caffe and had either just an espresso or glass of wine, that they were also charged a cover! Felt like she was ripped off. Anyone else have this experience? Is it usual?

Any other idiosyncrasies that we should now about these regions before we go?
kenav is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 07:10 AM
  #2  
LJ
 
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Throughout Italy you will pay more to sit down in a cafe with your espresso or glass of vino than if you 'belly up to the bar'-perhaps that is what happened to "someone"?

But this is not being 'ripped off': this is standard practice in that country. What is an oddity to a foreigner is merely how it is to a native.

However, to add to your list of idiosyncrasies, I guess what I would say is that Italians are much more inclined to the small niceties of trade, for example, entering a store and browsing: It is considered rude not to acknowledge the person behind the counter with a 'buon giorno' or at least a couteous smile upon entering and exiting.
LJ is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 07:49 AM
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Further, it is not being ripped off because this difference in prices is posted, usually near the cash register. The extra cost pays for the table service and allows you to stay for as long as you care to sit, even if you just have one coffee.
ellenem is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 08:16 AM
  #4  
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I'm not saying the poster was ripped off, just that she was surprised that an additional 2 euros as a coverto was added to the approx. 3 euros for espresso.

I'm aware that it usually costs more to sit down in a cafe, especially outdoors, than it does to stand up or eat indoors in many places in Europe. Been there, done that. But a coverto is new to us (except at a bar with music.)

I'm glad to hear about these things - gain some knowledge - before my hubby and I go to Italy.
kenav is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 08:34 AM
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Coperto has been the practice in Italy for many years and is well documented in travel guides as well as on this site. Just another example of how a little research can smooth your travels.

Another part of this system: When ordering at a counter, whether it be coffee, gelato, or a panini, often you pay first at the cash register and then bring your receipt to the counter. (It is considered un-hygenic for people handling food to handle money.)
ellenem is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 08:54 AM
  #6  
LJ
 
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Also, it is considered good manners in Italy to attempt to make the correct change. Now, don't panic over this one...of course, the clerk will make change from, say, a 10 EU note. But you will see around you that Italians in a cash line will take a moment to count out the correct change more often than we would likely do in North America where we are quite accustomed to pocketfuls of coin.
LJ is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 10:04 AM
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Don't know if this is an idiosyncrasie or not but we found that being seated with a great view of the water on Lake Garda was a bit more expensive than further back (this was in simione). When you drive around Garda, be aware that the roads are two lanes with barely enough room for cars/trucks going each way...add that to tunnels where the walls slope up to the top and as a result, the trucks have to move slightly to the center of their lane to avoid scraping the sides which means you'll have even less room as an oncoming vehicle. Just don't panic, for whatever reason, it does work out. The great dolomite road will take you a full day - even tho its about 75miles total. Visit the waterfall north of Riva as its a lovely hike.
cmeyer54 is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 10:09 AM
  #8  
 
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ref what cmeyer said, an easier way to get round is by local bus or the boats.

you really don't need a car if you are travelling round lake garda.
annhig is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 10:11 AM
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Another idiosyncracy (sp?): you must ask for the check in a restaurant. If you don't ask, they don't bring it. And, even if you do ask, it may take some time.
Mimar is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 10:33 AM
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Not trying to hijack the thread, but a followup question. Is the bread/cover charge per person or per table?

Thanks
Steve
bocacpa is offline  
Aug 24th, 2009, 01:02 PM
  #11  
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I believe it's per person. Doesn't really make sense if it were for the table, seems to me. If it were for the table that would mean it was € 2 (for example) for 2 people, or for 8! (Now watch, someone will tell me I'm wrong.)
kenav is offline  

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