When you first arrive in Catania, it is important to quickly complete the steps for your housing, transportation, and communications. Here are the steps that we will take together to get you up and running with your logistic details as soon as possible.
There are two steps that need to be completed for your housing while you are in Catania:
- Temporary housing upon initial arrival
- Long-term housing for your stay in Catania
You will need to find a place that you can stay during the first few days here in Catania. This will be the housing that you will keep while finalizing your long-term housing solution. You will probably need a location for 3-5 days, depending on when you arrive. You should coordinate with your Search Party supervisor for determining your temporary housing plan.
You will be responsible for booking your own temporary housing and we suggest booking this through Airbnb or Expedia. We also suggest finding a location within short walking distance to a Metro train station in Catania to make it easier for you to move around as you may not have access to a car, at least in the early days of your time in Catania.
Prior to your arrival, the Search Party team will assist you in locating an apartment for you to rent during your time in Catania. Our goal will be to find adequate housing at a reasonable price to meet your needs. We will also help you in establishing your utility services as well.
Once you arrive, you will sign a contract with the landlord for the period of time that you will be in Catania and you will be responsible to pay for and manage your housing during this time.
There are several transportation options in Catania, although this can be one of the more challenging aspects for newcomers to the field training. Here are three modes of transportation that we suggest:
The Metro is a relatively short, underground train system that runs through Catania. You can pay €1 for each one-way trip that you make, or you can purchase a metro card at the Borgo station for €15 per month. Our recommendation is to purchase the metro card on your first day in Catania and plan to use this as your primary means of transportation until you are able to purchase a car in a few months.
The bus system in Catania is a primary means of transportation for many people in Catania, although it is not as reliable in its time schedule as many might hope. We suggest using the bus as a back-up transportation and it costs €1 to ride one-way.
You can rent a car from the airport or from various rental car (autonoleggio) dealers around town. This can be a good short-term solution, but can become expensive over a sustained period of time. We suggest using rentalcars.com or another similar service to book your car. We also recommend purchasing the full insurance on the car as first-time drivers in Catania frequently have incidents that could be very expensive without the insurance.
There are also car and bike sharing services available. You can learn more about these services on the Amigo Car and Bike Sharing website.
Buy a Car
For most people, quickly purchasing a car when coming to Italy will be difficult. You must establish residency in Italy to purchase your car, and to do this, you need to complete your permesso di soggiorno and residency request processes before establishing residency. This could take 3-6 months, depending on the speed of the Questura, so our suggestion is that you expect to initially use public transportation and purchase a car later in your time in Catania, if at all.
Pre-paid mobile phones are the most common type of phone in Sicily. The service for mobile phones is typically pretty inexpensive and costs €5 – €15 per month with an activation fee of around €20. The most common carriers are Vodafone, TIM, and Wind, although several others are available as well.
You can also establish internet service to your new apartment. You will want to make sure that any contract that you sign will not extend past the time that you will be in the apartment.