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Laundry in Florence

Currently thinking of taking 1 medium sized check bag to Italy for 10 nights. I was going to take a bigger one but I wanted to see if I can avoid that. I pack a lot of clothes and outfits, so a carry on only for that long is a no go.

Some of my clothes can only be hang dried. Would Laundry Mats in Italy, hand dry a few of the shirts instead of putting in the dryer if I asked? I know most would in the states

Thanks

Posted by
15313 posts

To be honest, if you want some items hang-dried, wash them yourself in the sink at your hotel.That's what we do, and it's not difficult. I've done that for years. We also do laundromat wash-and-dries ourselves so we can control wash-water temps and dryer timings. No, I don't expect that laundry services will hang-dry your items.

I pack a lot of clothes and outfits,

Cut it back. Take only tops and bottoms that all can all go together, and no fabrics that need to be babied. No one cares if you are wearing the same thing for multiple days, and you don't want to be hauling a lot of luggage that you can't handle yourself.

Posted by
14678 posts

A full service laundry will do whatever you ask for a price. However I would carry only stuff that can be worn multiple times and with no special needs. You are going to be a tourist not in a wedding. Nobody will notice or care about the cute outfits you wear.

Posted by
2871 posts

With only ten nights in Italy, how many towns/cities are you going to, and for how long in each place?
Is it 10 actual nights in Italy, or does that include travel days?
Can I ask why you need so many outfits?
Finding a laundromat, trying to explain what you want, then going back later to pick it up may take longer than you think.
Small businesses like laundries may not be open with convenient hours or may close a day a week.
You can take as big a suitcase as you want, but have you thought about how you will manage a big case, especially if you are taking the train between places?
I used to take a big case to Italy.
12 trips later and now I take carryon only….it’s so much easier while you move between stops.
Sometimes I check it, but it’s the small size of it that facilitates moving about with it once I’m there that is the best part.
Last trip I didn’t even wear everything I brought.
My trips are usually 12 to 17 days long.
Let us know!

Posted by
32110 posts

I tend to sink wash smaller items at least every other night, and the travel clothing I use can easily be dried by just hanging in the hotel room. If it's necessary to wash a lot of larger items, I use local self serve laundromats ("lavanderie"). I have used service wash places in many countries on occasion and they've always done a good job.

If you're going to be in Florence for 10 days, I'd suggest asking the desk staff at your hotel for suggestions. They usually know where the closest laundry facilities are. If you do a Google search on "Lavanderia Florence", it will show a map with the locations of many facilities.

Posted by
4086 posts

As a person who packs for one week, coordinates everything around an inspiration piece like a fabulous scarf, typically travels for 4-5 weeks and does laundry along the way, I'm quite puzzled by your question.

If you're only going to be in Italy for 10 nights, you could pack lots of outfits and not wash anything. If you're planning to wash stuff for some reason, you don't need to pack a lot of outfits.

Do the math. Simply taking 3 pairs of pants and 8 tops that will work with each other adds up to at least 24 outfits. Add another pair of pants or a skirt and the number increases to 32. Doing different combinations of the tops (like a short-sleeved tee+long-sleeved button up shirt or tank+short-sleeved button up shirt and on and on) increases the number of outfits even more, especially if the inspiration scarf and/or jewelry is added. If you plan around a particular color scheme, everything will work together, whether you wear the scarf or not. Truly grab and go.

Considering that's it's unlikely that a laundry would give your clothes the special attention they need, thereby requiring that you wash and hang them yourself, you might want to rethink what and maybe how much you pack.

Beyond that, remember that you'll have to manage your bag(s) yourself wherever you go and however you get there.

Posted by
2871 posts

What Lo said.

The OP has another post about Venice, so presumably is taking trains?
A good reason to take a smaller, easier to lift bag.
No porters at Italian train stations.

Posted by
2447 posts

Since most of the clothes I take, hang dry, even at home when they are washed in the machine on delicate. It's easier on the fabrics and less wrinkles. So when traveling, I sink wash everything.

As for the size of your suitcase, most here recommend carry-on. I always carry-on outbound but check inbound. But after United delaying my bag coming home, I will now carry-on both ways (and not buy so many Christmas ornaments!). My trips are around 25 days. It's been a challenge packing light, but with persistence it's very doable.

If you choose to take a larger bag, just be sure you can handle it on and off trains, trams, vaporetto in Venice, and up and down stairs. There will be no one to help you and on transportation you will need to move quickly.

Posted by
4086 posts

What horsewoofie said, " If you choose to take a larger bag, just be sure you can handle it on and off trains, trams, vaporetto in Venice, and up and down stairs. There will be no one to help you and on transportation you will need to move quickly."

I love Venice. I've been there 3 times, the last one for 5 nights in an apartment. What a lot of people don't realize is that those beautiful arched bridges have steps. They aren't gently curved paved walkways.

Likewise, getting into and out of a vaporetto can be somewhat dicey depending on the stop because they are boats on water. Larger stops are generally more stable, but still may have a step to go up or down. That can be challenging even without luggage and more so the bigger or heavier the bags may be.

Posted by
3 posts

Thanks for the help.

Seems like washing in the hang and hang dry is the way to go.

First time traveling internationally, so just wasn't sure how much to bring.

This helps a-lot.

Posted by
2871 posts

You can look on this forum for many good …no, great….packing tips.
Congratulations on your first international trip to look forward to!

Posted by
4086 posts

Not being sure how much general research you've done for this trip, you might want to fully explore the Travel Tips section here on the RS website: https://www.ricksteves.com/travel-tips It's one of those resources that help to provide information on those things we didn’t know we needed to know.

Also there's a good section on Italy with links to a variety of relevant information and suggestions: https://www.ricksteves.com/europe/italy You may be surprised to see this topic of yours listed there. 😃

Posted by
2447 posts

1stTime, how exciting for you to go to Italy. It will be the first of many European visits I'm sure. I'm going to Italy next September for the second time, third for Venice which I love. I've done carry-on each time, learning and improving each trip. I've been able to cut weight and struggling less with practice. There are sample packing lists in Travel Tips and on the forum (use the search feature).

For an example, here's what I'm taking next year for 25 days, which is just about the same as I took this year to Germany/Austria for 29 days. The list includes what I wear on the plane.
3 pair pants (I wear leggings because they pack small)
7 shirts/tunics, long and short sleeve
5 sets underwear
1 set PJs
2 pair shoes, walking shoes and sandals
1 sweater
1 lightweight jacket
1 packable rain poncho

I don't know how old you are, but as I age, I take more "get me through the day" supplies, eg drugs, supplements, misc needs. These all add weight so only take the bare essentials. Electronics add weight too. So do lotions and potions.

As you attempt to pack lighter and smaller, first check your airlines' size and weight requirements; that's your maximum packing goal. Then make a detailed packing list. Test pack, revamp list, weigh what you're taking, test pack again, repeat until you are happy with your list. Packing cubes are very helpful to keep things organized. Remember that only you will know what you wore each day. No one will nor will they care.

Here's a concurrent thread about laundry that may help you
https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/packing/laundry-fd05c295-20ba-4cdc-818f-a2a516d90dc2

Posted by
21 posts

We are taking our 5th Rick Steve tour in October. 1st trip we did with carry-on and backpack. Next three trips we used a 25” check-in bag and backpack and ugh towards the end of trips exhausted from lugging around the bigger suitcase. Many times no elevator so my not so young husband would haul the big suitcases up and down the stairs. Hotel elevators in Europe are rather petite with two people and their luggage maxing them out. This trip coming up we are going back to carry-on and backpack.

The hotel hangers are usually wooden and the kind that hang only in the closet, not ideal for hanging wet laundry. On our 1st trip we took just the rubber travel clothes line we had purchased and used for a 23 night cruise. After the first trip started taking travel clothes pins that we purchased from IKEA and Amazon plus a couple of carabiners with the travel clothesline. The travel clothes pins have a strap that goes over shower bar or towel racks. We have tried washing clothes at laundry mats but rather expensive and dryers run too hot. Used hotel send out service and big mistake, clothes came back clean but wrinkled. I spent lots of time ironing to try and get wrinkles out. Always take along a few gallon size zip lock plastic bags just in case laundry didn’t completely dry and time to move on to the next hotel where I then just rehang it to finish drying. Usually pack a travel size bottle of baby shampoo(in a quart size zip lock bag in case bottle leaks) to use as laundry soap or just pick up some in the country we are in. One time we could only purchase a medium size box of laundry packets. Didn’t need to use them all so offered them to other tour members.

Safe travels!

Posted by
15313 posts

The hotel hangers are usually wooden and the kind that hang only in
the closet,

I pack a couple of lightweight plastic hangers for drip-drying shirts in the shower. IMHO, .they keep their shape better than hung on a clothesline. Some people pack inflatable travel hangers, and prefer those as they say clothes dry faster on them.