Now that my time abroad has come to an end, I have most certainly learned a few things. There are several concepts I wish I would have known before coming to Italy. First, I wish I would have done more research before coming. By research, I mean that I wish I would have come up with a list of restaurants and sightseeing activities beforehand. I had looked at a few restaurants before coming, but I would have been able to try more places if I would have planned which restaurants to go to each week before coming. Not only is this true for Florence, but also for the other cities I visited while in Europe. With the API program, we had two weekend trips planned for us, which were Venice and Rome. I regret not booking tickets to the churches and monuments in advance, because in some cases, we were unable to get them while in the city. In regards to packing, I would suggest a few things. First, print out a photocopy of your passport. I had not heard this tip before, but if something happens to your passport, you are able to take the photo copy to the embassy and get a new one much more quickly. Additionally, be sure to get out any cash you think you may need in advance, including coins! It costs money to use public restrooms here, and the machines only take small coins, no bills. Finally, use packing cubes to help organize your things. I got mine from Amazon. I had never packed with packing cubes before, and I did not end up having a dresser in my apartment, so being able to keep my clothes in the cubes kept me organized.