Safety tips for niche groups in Italy

Hints, advice, and a frank assessment of what you can expect on a trip to Italy for women, gays, racial minorities, and the handicapped

I realize "niche groups" is an odd phrase, but I was looking for something that could sum up, well, basically everyone who doesn't fit under the category of an able-bodied, heterosexual, white male.

In other words, these are hints, tips, and notes on what to expect for women traveling in Italy, gay and lesbian travelers in Italy, the physically challenged traveling in Italy, and racial minorities traveling in Italy (and that category includes blacks, East Asians, South Asians, to some extent Middle Easterners, and anyone else who isn't obviously white or Mediterranean).

Since nothing really ties any of those groups together, each gets its own page. There is, unfortunately, one other thing that all share in common.

The sad truth is that anyone who isn't an able-bodied white male will probably find himself or herself the more frequent target of attempted scams and rip-offs—either because you are viewed as an easier target or because of latent (or blatant) racism, sexism, or otherwise small-minded behavior. Sadly, you can find plenty of bigotry and hatred even in as easy-going a country as Italy.

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