Bologna Inside - Second Edition

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Contact Hera, the city’s water and gas authority, to set up new services or to ask questions about your existing contract.

Hera Bologna

Via C. Berti Pichat, 2/4
Tel. 051.287111
Numero verde 800.999500 for new contracts
Numero verde 800.250101 for existing service

You will get your gas bill every three months. You can pay it at the post office, through your bank’s automatic bill pay, or directly at Hera. The authorities only come to read the meter once a year. Periodically, you may be requested by mail to read your meter and send back the reading on a special postcard. If you do not update the information, the authorities will charge you according to the previous year’s usage. The difference between your actual usage and what you’ve paid is calculated at the next meter reading. If they have overcharged you, they give you a credit. If you use more than projected, you’ll have to pay the difference, called a conguaglio.


The electric company is called ENEL. ENEL services, including initial set-up can be handled by phone, fax and mail. A standard contract gives you a usage capacity of three kilowatt-hours. This may not be enough to run many electrical appliances at once. To avoid blowing a fuse, use only one major appliance at a time or ask for a higher base consumption level. Bills are sent out every other month. Here too, prepare yourself for the occasional conguaglio.


Numero verde 800.900800

At the little neighborhood post office where I pay all my bills, I have found I can avoid the long lines at the bill-paying sportelli by having something to send at the letter sportello where they will then happily process my bill. I have been known to write a postcard to myself and mail it, just to get in and out quickly. I always marvel at the twenty-five people waiting in line for the other sportelli - don’t they know this trick?

Stephanie Jurs


Hera services all of Bologna with garbage/recycling services and street cleaning. Put regular household trash in the dumpsters located everywhere. Unlike in many other countries, there is no limit on the amount of trash you produce nor is there required sorting. Once you become a resident, go to the Ufficio Tassa Rifiuti Urbani (Urban Waste Tax Office) to put yourself on the garbage tax list. Know the exact size of your apartment in square meters as well as any other space such as garage or basement.

Ufficio Tassa Rifiuti Urbani

Via Capramozza, 15
Tel. 051.203429

In most neighborhoods you can find colorful recycling receptacles known as campane (bells). There are also special smaller containers for used batteries. Used or expired pharmaceutical items can be disposed of in collection boxes in the pharmacy. When you need to dispose of furniture or other large items, call Hera and they will give you a specific time and date to leave the items by the dumpster. Nearby the campane, you will sometimes also find donation receptacles for used clothing.