Missing items posted to Italy

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I've noticed that there are a lot of posts reporting items go missing when posting to Italy and saying that Italian buyers are scammers trying to get refunds.  While a few of them may be, I would like to share my experience of this as an expat who lived in Italy for 5 years in 2 major cities, Venice and Milan, but now living back home in London.

I used to buy on eBay UK and other online UK sites while I was living there and have to say that it is more the incompetence of the Italian postal service that is to blame for missing packages.  Pretty much everything I ordered from the UK would go missing unless a signature was required upon delivery and if I went to every various Post Office branch, delivery office, sorting office etc. to enquire about it the staff would pass the buck and tell me to go and ask someone else who would subsequently do the same!  Most people live in apartments where there is either a porter or no porter.  If there is no porter or the porter is not in the lobby, the delivery driver does not leave a card to say there is a package for a resident of the apartment block so there is no way of even knowing that there was an attempted delivery!

If you intend to ship to Italy then my advice would be to post using a service that requires a signature on arrival and also to ask the buyer to confirm the address exactly as the Italian postal system recognises it.  I once didn't receive something on the basis that the number of the apartment block was at the beginning of the first line (as it would be in the UK) instead of the end!  Grrrr!!

Good luck everyone!
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