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Everything that changes in Italy in October 2020

Everything that changes in Italy in October 2020
Photo: Vincenzo Pinto/AFP
From the upcoming review of coronavirus restrictions to the clocks going back, here's what we can expect this October in Italy.

Coronavirus rules up for review

One thing we’ll all be watching closely is the revision of Italy’s current set of coronavirus rules, with the government’s emergency decree (DPCM) up for review on October 7th. 
 
It’s not known yet what ministers are planning, however as the number of new cases is now rising again here in Italy it’s thought unlikely that any rules will be relaxed.
 
 
State of Emergency extension?
 
As well as the current rules being up for review, on October 15th ministers also have to decide whether to extend the country’s existing state of emergency (What’s the difference between that and the emergency decree? Here’s a full explanation.)
 
Again, the government has not given much indication of what it plans to do, but with cases rising and the situation still volatile in Italy, the provisions are widely expected to be extended.
 
Flu jabs are available earlier
 
Flu jabs are starting earlier than usual this year. Italian health authorities have confirmed that vaccines will be available from the beginning of October this year, in an attempt to lessen the impact on health services of flu season combined with the coronavirus outbreak. 
 
Free vaccines will be extended to 60-64 year olds this year, and those eligible are urged to get their jabs as early as the beginning of October – almost a month earlier than is usually recommended.
 
 
Electricity and gas prices are going up
 
Get ready for higher utility bills in Italy from this month – and not only because you may need to switch your heating on. Energy prices have gone back up and are now close to their pre-Covid levels, reportedly rising from October 1st by +15.6% for electricity and +11.4% for methane. Prices plunged during Italy’s lockdown but are now returning to normal due to increased energy consumption as businesses get back to work.
 
No more free museum Sundays
 
If you were hoping to visit your local attraction for free this weekend, you’ll need to know that entrance will no longer be free on the first Sunday of every month. Italy’s popular free museum Sundays programme has now been suspended until further notice in an attempt to keep crowds down.
 
No more free entry to the Colosseum: Italy has suspended its free museum Sundays. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP
 
The way you access social security is changing
 
The INPS (Italy’s social security office) is getting rid of PIN numbers for users. From October most people will have to use a central government electronic ID to login. Find more details on the INPS website here.
 
Some extra admin for business owners
 
From October, businesses will have to officially register their 'digital domicile' (ie. a secure PEC email address). This was not compulsory before. Find out more here.

 
Clocks go back (but you get extra sleep!)
 
It's that time of year again. During the night from Saturday October 24th to Sunday October 25th, clocks in Italy will be set to winter time. At 3am the clock will go back one hour, back to Central European Time (CET).
 
The good news is that we all get an extra hour of sleep. But it will get darker earlier in the evening.
 
Sicily brings back Sunday bakery ban
 
If you're in Sicily, be aware that if you want a loaf of bread on a Sunday you'll have to bake it yourself. The regional government on the island is reintroducing a ban on bakeries opening on the first and third Sundays of every month.
 
The rule, in place until June, is reportedly intended to protect bakery workers by limiting how many Sundays they can be expected to work. Any bakeries found open on those days can be fined up to 400 euros.
 
(This article has been updated to clarify that this ban does not apply to baking at home.)
 
 

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  1. Question: you said that pricking the ginger corona virus test is good enough for italy. This would mean that antibody testing is ok. But they say “antigen” and this is different. Can you clarify!!

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