A no-chow zone? Florence to ban eating on pavements, tourists could face up to R9k in fines

2018-09-06 19:00 - Marisa Crous
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Florence, Italy

Florence inner city. (Photo: Getty)

Local shop-keepers and other restaurants in the vicinity of the increasingly popular Florence sandwich shop, All’ Antico Vinaio, is fed up with tourists eating on their doorsteps, in their doorways and on pavements situated in front of their establishments.

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Sitting in a prime spot between the Uffizi Galleries and Palazzo Vecchio, the eatery is incredible popular with tourists and foodies alike, especially seeing as it has received very favourable reviews on TripAdvisor, with 79% of people rating its cold meats-filled sandwiches as 'Excellent'. 

(The sandwiches look truly drool-worthy). 

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And with more and more tourists flocking to this magical Italian city (about 10 million people visited in 2017), combined with a lack of public benches in the inner city, chowing down on your La Favolosa al-fresco style, just seems to be a natural progression.

But, unfortunately, this will no longer allowed.

Florence mayor, Dario Nardell is calling for "boorish" tourists to be fined up to €500 (almost R9000 at R17,79/€), if caught. The Florence council instituted this bylaw this week, reports the Telegraph. 

The bylaw will, however, only apply to certain streets in the Renaissance city, including streets near the Uffizi Galleries, and at traditional 'meal times', i.e. between 12pm-3pm and from 6pm-10pm

It will be in effect until January 6th of next year, but could be extended if the council sees fit.

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Apparently, shopkeepers in the area have been encouraged to put up signs in both Italian and English to inform tourists (and locals) about this new bylaw. It has been reported that the owner of  All’ Antico Vinaio supports the new rule, but has called for more benches to be provided in this busy tourist area city for tourists to enjoy his and other restaurants' tasty delights. 

Interestingly, in 2017 mayor Nardell opted for a similar approach when seeking out a solution for tourists snacking on the steps leading up to Renaissance churches in Florence. He deployed council workers to hose down the steps, hoping tourists would be deterred by the dampness of the steps. 

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