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13 – PostePay (Visa debit card)

This may or may not be useful for you, so you might wish to wait a bit first before deciding whether you need one. You may also get other debit cards instead of PostePay.

To get one, go to the Poste Italiane bringing the originals and photocopies of the following documents:

1. Codice Fiscale (even just the temporary sheet if you don’t have the card yet).

2. Tessera Sanitaria (even just the temporary sheet if you don’t have the card yet).

3. Permesso di Soggiorno (they DO NOT accept the receipts from the Poste if you don’t have the card yet).

4. Passport.

As you enter the Post Office door, get a number under the corresponding letter for “PostePay”, and wait for your turn. At the counter, you might be asked to fill up a form and sign. Pay the debit card fee (€5 in 2016) and whatever amount you wish to load the debit card with. You will be given the PostePay debit card along with the password and other information in an envelope.


  • Postepay debit cards are of two types:
    • “Evolution”: black, Master Card, with IBAN (allowing bank to bank transfers, but only within Italy it seems – please check), costs €12 every year
    • the normal one: yellow color, Visa Electron, without IBAN, costs €10 up front (no annual subscription)
  • Both debit card types may be used for in-store purchases and online transactions (such as Amazon, Ebay, Paypal, etc.).
  • Post Office employees tend to sell the Poste Mobile SIM card. They might insist with you, speaking in fast Italian you might not even understand, and let you sign a sheet. This will actually make you shift from your current celphone operator to the Poste operator. Make sure NOT TO SIGN ANY SHEET WITH “POSTE MOBILE” unless you are sure you wish to change your celfone operator!