Dealing with a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) while traveling in Italy: what you need to know

UTI waiting line
How will I manage to walk around Rome all day, if I feel the urge to stop at every single public bathroom on the way?

Most women will know what we are talking about: the UTI, or urinary tract infection is extremely common among women of all ages. 

They may also know that, as uncomfortable as they can be, UTIs can often be treated fairly quickly. 

In fact, you may simply have to add a visit to a urine infection specialist doctor near you, to your sightseeing checklist, or a quick video visit.

If a UTI is threatening to ruin your holiday, don’t let it do so. For a common UTI antibiotics can be very effective, and make you feel better very fast.

Let’s start from the basics.

Need a UTI prescription in Italy?

What is a UTI?

Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) are caused by the presence of bacteria in the urinary tract. Depending on whether the bacteria travel up to the kidneys or stops at the bladder, UTIs are classified as bladder infections or kidney infections.

Kidneys: filter blood to produce urine

Bladder: stores urine till a person urinates

Ureters: transmit urine from the kidneys to the bladder

Urethra: removes urine from the bladder

urinary tract and kidneys

A doctor for urine infection is likely to understand whether you have a UTI simply by checking your symptoms, possibly running a urine test.

Typical symptoms of a UTI

If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, head to a clinic or a video consultation for a check-up visit:

  • Intense pain or burning when you urinate
  • A frequent need to urinate
  • Bloody urine


If the infection has reached your kidneys, you may also suffer from:

  • Fever
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Pain in your back

UTI treatment

It’s not rare to hear someone at a pharmacy asking how to get antibiotics for UTI withoug seeing a doctor.

Remember that in Italy pharmacies are not allowed to sell antibiotics without a doctor’s prescription and there cannot be a doctor in the pharmacy or affiliated to the pharmacy.

Though you can easily find over-the-counter medications at any pharmacy, these are often ineffective, and you will need to have a doctor prescribe you antibiotics to treat the infection.

A dose of antibiotics can last from 3 to 15 days, depending on whether the bacteria have reached the kidneys or not. But don’t panic!

Need a prescription?

Meanwhile, the doctor may prescribe you a pain-killer to ease the burning feel and avoid falling behind on your perfectly planned Italian holiday schedule.

For many men and women, urinary tract infections can be a recurring problem, which interferes with their daily routine, causing pain and discomfort. Here a few tips recommended by urine infection specialists to prevent another UTI:

  • Drink water, water, and more water to flush out bacteria from your body
  • Finish the dose of antibiotics prescribed by the doctor. Do not interrupt the treatment because you are feeling better.
  • Urinate immediately after sexual intercourse (remember that this can help you against UTI, but does not prevent STD!!).
  • Avoid using spermicides as a form of birth-control
  • If you have been through menopause, ask a doctor about vaginal oestrogen


Don’t let UTIs prevent you from exploring Italy and fully enjoying your Italian vacation. Contact us to see a doctor, and start the treatment right away!


Honeymoon Cystitis

Imagine this: you and your partner have just had an amazing wedding and you’re all excited for your honeymoon trip to Italy. But wait, there’s a little hiccup known as “honeymoon cystitis” that might try to sneak into your plans.


It’s like a pesky bug that can affect mostly women, causing uncomfortable bladder infections after you’ve had some intimate fun, like during your romantic Italian adventure together. You see, the closeness can also bring in some unwanted bacteria, leading to issues like needing to pee a lot, a burning feeling, and a bit of discomfort.


The good news is, you can dodge this by drinking water and making sure you use the bathroom before and after.

If you feel the symptoms starting and don’t want to ruin your trip, see a doctor online for a quick prescription.

If you are worried it might be something else, consider getting an STI test for your peace of mind.

Don’t let honeymoon cystitis put a dampener on your Italian adventure – a few precautions can help you enjoy all the pasta, gelato, and amore without a worry!

It usually takes just one day of antibiotics to ease UTI symptoms and feel much better!

DoctorsinItaly Team

This article was written, curated, and updated by the DoctorsinItaly team, as part of our efforts to share relevant and current information on health and wellness related topics, as well as on life as an expat or traveler in Italy.