Canadian traveller’s controversial advice for what not to wear in Italy to avoid ‘looking like a tourist’ divides thousands

A traveller has divided thousands after she gave her how-to guide for dressing in Italy so you don’t immediately look like a tourist. 

Nicole said she has travelled from her home city of Toronto to Italy every year for over a decade and suggested visitors avoid wearing ‘tourist clothes’ like ripped denim mini shorts or activewear. 

The 31-year-old said to instead opt for linen trousers, ‘romantic’ off-shoulder or camisole tops and flowy dresses leaving many Italian viewers scratching their heads.

While some were thankful for the advice, Italian natives said they frequently wear what Nicole described as ‘tourist clothes’ without any issues. 

‘Here is everything that you should wear and everything that you absolutely should not wear in Italy coming from someone that has gone to Italy almost every year since 2010,’ she said in a TikTok video. 


She also advised against opting for activewear in major cities however Italian locals were quick to slam her advice

Nicole, who has travelled to Italy every year since 2010, has shared what to avoid wearing while visiting the European destination including denim shorts and a crop top

‘My favourite thing to do is to blend items that I’ve found at home and items that I’ve bought there.’

Rather than stocking up on outfits for your European summer holiday where you live, Nicole said to only pack ‘staples’ and find clothing when you arrive. 

‘This was first day in Rome, I ran into linen boutique, and I bought a bunch of inexpensive, beautiful linen items that the locals wear, and I wore them for my whole trip,’ she said. 

‘Show up with a half empty luggage and buy for €20, €30, buy your vacation outfits first day, first week.’

Nicole said she felt ‘much more confident’ in the items she bought on her travels she than she would have in ‘tourist clothes’.

‘Do not wear ripped, short denim shorts in Rome, Venice, Milan. You’ll be treated as a tourist, you will be looked at as a tourist, you will stick out, not in a good way. Denim shorts and a crop top: Never,’ she said. 

Nicole (pictured) said to find 'romantic' and flowy linen clothing while travelling however Italian viewers were quick to slam the advice

Nicole (pictured) said to find ‘romantic’ and flowy linen clothing while travelling however Italian viewers were quick to slam the advice

‘Athletic sets in the major cities, you will stick out: Tourist, let’s overcharge. She’s going to overpay, she doesn’t know what she’s talking about, she doesn’t know where she is, what she’s doing.’

While Nicole admitted activewear can be appropriate when going on a hike or near the beach, she claimed it was best to avoid it when in a city having lunch or going to a wine tasting. 

Instead, she said to don ‘romantic, colourful, off-the-shoulder tops’ paired with linen pants and comfortable sneakers or ‘flowy, loose, and breathable’ dresses. 

Nicole’s controversial clip drew in more than 3million views but not everyone agreed with her hot takes. 

‘Girl, I’m a local, I wear top and denim shorts and no one look at me as a tourist,’ one woman replied. 

‘I think it’s the opposite. Looking aesthetic is what gives you away as a tourist. I live in Barcelona and here is the same,’ a second said. 

‘Honestly white dress, very long and elegant in the middle of Milan (where I am from) is what makes me think of a tourist,’ a third agreed. 

‘Denim shorts and a crop top are my everyday outfit in the summer (I’m from Milan), just wear whatever you want,’ a fourth wrote. 

Many were quick to point out that it’s irrelevant what a tourist wears as they can easily be identified by their accent or if they don’t speak the language. 

However the response wasn’t all negative as plenty of viewers were thankful for Nicole’s advice. 

‘Spot on! I’ve been more focused on getting pieces that stand the test of time and can be paired with many outfits on trips,’ one user said. 

‘I really needed to hear this. It’s a wake up call but I needed to know, I can’t wear my denim cut offs and I am thankful,’ another added. 

‘100 per cent agree with this! Same goes for Bali! I went and bought linen trousers first week when I went Bali,’ someone commented.