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Woman warns tourists about strict Rome dress code

‘I was dressed too slutty,’ said traveller barred from Vatican

Natalie Wilson
Wednesday 14 June 2023 09:00 BST

Related video: I got 'dress-coded' over my 'inappropriate' top: 'Disney doesn't like backs'

An Australian tourist caught out by the modest dress code of several iconic buildings in Rome has warned future tourists to plan their outfits around the rules.

In a video posted on TikTok, Jacki Hodge, 26, shared a picture of the white summer dress she had worn to explore the ancient attractions of the Italian capital, alongside a warning to others.

“You can’t have your shoulders out, you can’t have your boobs out, you definitely can’t have cut-outs and the dress is backless,” Ms Hodge said of her outfit.

Although the dress looked “great in photos”, Ms Hodge was denied entry to the Pantheon, the Vatican, and the Museum of the Dead.

“At places like the Pantheon, they just said ‘no, get out’ as robes to cover up were not available,” she said.

She advised others to pack a scarf or jacket and bring clothing that hides the knees, especially for entry to the Museum of the Dead, after being forced to wait outside for friends while they explored the bucket-list destinations.

Her “hot tip” was to “just be aware and dress appropriately” and to steer clear of crop tops and short shorts if you want to avoid “funny looks” and risk getting denied entry to churches and monuments in Europe.

The video has been viewed 1.9 million times since being uploaded last month and sparked conversations about cultural ignorance in the comments.

Some thanked Ms Hodge for the warning. “I would never have thought of this, thank you!” one user replied.

Others were shocked at the “lack of basic research” and “common sense”.

“I don’t get it. Do people not read up on the places they’re going to before going? Appropriate attire is such a basic thing”, wrote one user.

Another commented: “How do people not know this?”

Many Italian regions have cracked down on disrespectful and disruptive tourist behaviour in recent years.

In 2022, Sorrento mayor Massimo Coppola introduced a fine of up to €500 (£425) for tourists walking around the popular coastal town shirtless or “indecently” dressed in bikinis.

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