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What you need to know about Italy's winter sales

The Local Italy
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What you need to know about Italy's winter sales
'Saldi' season is the best time of year to go shopping in Italy. Photo by MARCO BERTORELLO / AFP.

Shops in Italy are gearing up for their big winter sales. Here's when they begin in each region.


The law in Italy dictates that shops are allowed just two big saldi, or sales, a year - one in the summer, one in the winter - with dates varying according to region.

The practice aims to boost consumption and give vendors a chance to shift the last season's stock while ensuring an even playing field between competitors.

The custom actually dates back to the Fascist era, having first been introduced via a 1939 law. It was scrapped for about four decades after the collapse of Mussolini's regime, but was brought back in an updated form in 1980.

READ ALSO: How to make the most of winter sales shopping in Milan

In 1997, the law was revised to hand autonomy over to individual regions, which is why the saldi in different regions have different start and end dates.

All this means that while in many countries sales start as soon as Boxing Day, in Italy you'll have to wait until January to pick up a bargain in the saldi invernali (winter sales).

The good news is you'll have plenty of time to do so, as they typically last at least a few weeks.

People walk past a clothing store announcing sales in Milan on January 5, 2018.

People walk past a clothing store announcing sales in Milan on January 5, 2018. Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA / AFP.

When do the 2024 winter sales start?

Here’s when the 2024 sales officially begin and end in each Italian region:

  • Abruzzo: January 5th-March 4th
  • Basilicata: January 5th-March 4th
  • Calabria: January 5th-March 6th
  • Campania: January 5th-March 4th
  • Emilia Romagna: January 5th-March 4th
  • Friuli Venezia Giulia: January 5th-March 31st
  • Lazio: January 5th-February 15th
  • Liguria: January 5th-February 18th
  • Lombardy: January 5th-March 4th
  • Marche: January 5th-March 1st
  • Molise: January 5th-March 4th
  • Piedmont: January 5th-February 29th
  • Puglia: January 5th-February 28th
  • Sardinia: January 5th-March 4th
  • Sicily: January 2nd-March 15th
  • Tuscany: January 5th-March 4th
  • Umbria: January 5th-March 5th
  • Valle d'Aosta: January 3rd-March 31st
  • Veneto: January 5th-February 28th

READ ALSO: Life in Italy: ‘How our shopping habits have changed since we moved from the US’


The autonomous provinces of Trento and Bolzano have their own sales periods: vendors in Trento hold sales for any 60-day period of their choosing, while different towns in Bolzano, Oltradige and Bassa Atesina will hold sales either from January 13th to February 10th or February 24th to March 23rd.

Italian law states that the items on sale must come only from the season just gone, rather than things that have been sitting on the shelves for months (though the rule is hard to enforce).

When it comes to fashion, that means you’ll mainly find stock from autumn-winter collections on sale.

Discounts usually start at around 20-30 percent and climb as high as 70 percent.

Shops are required to display both the original and discounted prices, so you know exactly how much of a bargain you're getting.


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