Book on Airbnb: In Florence, Venice and Rome, you can book your accommodation with Airbnb and save €100 per day. Some of the Airbnb houses are in city center and they are much bigger compared to hotels. Hotel rooms in Italy city centers are generally very small about 15 square meters. For the same price, you can book a two bedroom house and feel the local vibe. €200 saved!
Rent a car: Renting a car will save you at least €100 in total and you will not have to pay that hefty taxi fee because you missed the train. €100 saved!
Florence museums: Before going to Florence, we have read lots of reviews that there are long lines in museum entrances. When we checked the official website of museums, all the tickets were sold out. Buying Firenzecard was recommended as it has a priority pass and limitless entry to all museums for 3 days. Firenzecard has a high price tag of €85 per person. When reading online reviews, Firenzecard seemed to be a deal as you don’t wait on the line and entering only 3 museums is also about €70. Even after buying the Firenzecard, you should call a phone number to book your time. But the phone does not answer at all. It is frustrating trying to get a hold of someone after spending €170 for 2 people.
On Firenzecard official website, below warning is posted.
PLEASE NOTE: THE ACCESS TO CUPOLA IS NOT GUARANTEED AND THE RESERVATION IS COMPULSORY. Temporary suspension of access priority to Campanile di Giotto, Battistero di S.Giovanni, Cripta di Santa Reparata and Museo dell'Opera del Duomo. FOR THE PRIORITY ACCESS TO Galleria degli Uffizi AND Galleria dell'Accademia the reservation is required (see the FAQ below to know the differerent ways to make the reservation).
The reality is buying Firenzecard is not a good deal at all. We went to Florence to discover that there is no line at all. We entered Galleria degli Uffizi in 5 minutes. Firenzecard holders got in a line as well and their waiting time was also 5 minutes. Ticket price of Galleria degli Uffizi is misinterpreted. Ticket price is €20 per person. If you directly enter the museum there is no reservation price which is €4. So you should be calculating ticket price as €20.
Second popular museum is Museo di Palazzo Vecchio which is next to Galleria degli Uffizi. Ticket price of Museo di Palazzo Vecchio is €16.50. It is much smaller than Galleria degli Uffizi. Quick catch is Museo di Palazzo Vecchio is open until 11 PM so you can plan your schedule accordingly and visit Museo di Palazzo Vecchio at night.
One of the most popular museum is Galleria dell'Accademia. Galleria dell'Accademia ticket price is €12. Statue of David is shown in Galleria dell'Accademia.
Most interesting and must-go museum in Florence is Galleria degli Uffizi. If you are not really into visiting museums, the reality is it is not possible to visit more than 2 museums per day. It gets tiring after a while. Buying a Firenzecard is not a good investment at all since it is not physically possible to visit more than 4-5 museums in 3 days. Galleria dell'Accademia is only limited to Statue of David. It looks like a good idea to visit all museums while planning your trip but when it comes to walking down the aisles and standing up the whole day, it gets tiring. €130 saved.
Eat at restaurants with tables: While street food is popular and seems to be cheap in Italy, actually it is very expensive for what you get. There are lots of pizzeria and panini stores that offer a slice of pizza or a panini for €4. It looks cheap at first sight. But a regular restaurant with proper seating offers a full pizza for €8. Soft drink prices are also same. So for the same price, you get a lousy pizza slice without a table. Going for a decent restaurant is much enjoying and cost effective. €70 saved.