“Given the worsening of the epidemiological situation in Europe, the Foreign Ministry recommends all compatriots avoid travel abroad unless for strictly necessary reasons,” an update on the ministry's website stated on Monday.
The ministry also warned that travel to Italy could be complicated by new travel restrictions – as previously happened when the country began to restrict entry from many countries during the initial emergency phase.
“It should also be noted that given the high number of infections in many European countries, future further restrictions on travel cannot be ruled out, which would risk complicating re-entry to Italy,” the ministry warned.
“Similar repatriation problems could arise, with a much more serious impact, in the case of travel to non-EU destinations.”
While Italy currently allows travel from European and Schengen zone countries, travel from many countries outside Europe remains heavily restricted.
Arrivals to Italy from some countries including the UK are subject to mandatory coronavirus testing.
The rules on travel from within Europe could change, depending on the number of infections seen in each country.
While the situation in Italy has worsened dramatically in recent weeks, the infection rate is currently even higher in some neighbouring countries including France and Spain.
The average 14-day Covid-19 case notification rate per 100,000 inhabitants in each European country. Chart: ECDC
For more details on the rules when travelling to or from another country, the Foreign Ministry recommends that travellers check the relevant country information on the government's Viaggiare Sicuri (Safe Travel) website.
Find all The Local's coverage of the coronavirus outbreak in Italy here.