It depends on when you expect to be in Florence and where you want to
stay. For certain properties (such as my favorite, the Morandi alla
Crocetta), six months is not too early to at least try to make reservations.
For others, you may be able to go without reservations, again depending on
when you're traveling. I found that many hotels would tell me that it was
too early to reserve and to contact them 3 to 4 months before my arrival
date. I suggest you determine where you want to stay and then contact the
hotel with your request.
As for airports, I've found that many of the lower-priced Italy flights
go into and out of Milan. It's about a 2 1/2 hour train ride (I think) to
Florence on the Eurostar. Also, open-jaw tickets (arriving at one airport
and departing from another) are often no more expensive, and sometimes
actually cheaper, than round-trip fares (arriving at and departing from the