The Catholic University of America

Receiving Mail in Rome

The mailing address

Student name
The Catholic University of America
Via Garibaldi 28
00153 Roma
ITALY

telephone: +39 06 5656 7904
email: student's email

Mailing principles

  • Mail should be addressed to students exactly as given above. This will ensure that the mail arrives in a timely manner.
  • It should be addressed to the student, and not to any of the program staff.
  • Packages should include the student's cell phone number and their email address.
  • Those living with host families should have their mail sent to the Rome Center.
  • Some items cannot be sent to Italy. The US Postal Service has a convenient list.

Important details

Remember that Italy is a different country than the US. Even though this may seem to be common sense, the implications of this for receiving mail are not always clear. Here are some general principles and suggestions.

Shipping times

Average shipping times are as follows

  • Simple letter (paper only): 10-30 days
  • Shipping envelope: 2-6 weeks, depending on contents
  • Package: 1-2 months, depending on contents
  • Express envelope: 2-4 days, depending on shipping company
  • Express package: 4-6 days, depending on shipping company

Customs

All mail (letters and packages) entering the European Union and Italy must pass through Italian customs. This means (1) shipping times take longer than expected, (2) the recipient may have to pay a customs fee to receive the letter/package, (3) certain items will not be allowed into the country at all or will require extensive paperwork. This is not an Italian particularity, but is the case whenever anything is shipped over international borders. Most Italian customs rules are also European rules.

Customs delay

Expect that any items other than papers and books will be stopped in customs. Students will receive by mail or email a form to complete indicating what is in the package and its value.

Customs fee

  • Italy may charge a 20% tax on the value of any goods coming into the country. If a package contains anything of value, the student will have to pay this charge, particularly if the item is or looks new. Also, the value declared by the sender may be used to calculate the customs fee.
  • For example: if the student's parents send a necklace and indicate on the shipping forms that it is worth $200, the student will probably be assessed a customs charge of about 50 euro, which includes the 20% tax, plus handling fees. This is above and beyond whatever shipping costs that the parents paid to ship it.
  • Students receiving something for their own use that they owned prior to leaving for Italy may possibly avoid a customs charge by having the shipper (for example, their parents) indicate this on the customs form that they fill out when shipping the item: "Oggetto personale usato che appartiene già al destinatario. Sarà per il suo uso personale solo per il soggiorno in Italia e sarà riportato negli Stati Uniti alla fine del soggiorno. Il valore indicato e solo per fini assicurativi."

Medicines and other problematic items

    Certain items may not be shipped into Italy. Certain medicines may be shipped, but only with specific and detailed paperwork. Please consult the Italian regulations on this before expecting to have them shipped.

    Further Information

    Further information can be found on the Italian Customs website. There is a brochure in English that may be of help.

    Last Revised 3 February 2017