What you need to know about travelling within Italy right now

In addition to international travel restrictions, there are new limits on where you can go within Italy right now - but they vary depending on region and time of day.

What you need to know about travelling within Italy right now
Roads in central Milan were unusually quiet on Saturday after new restrictions came in. Photo: AFP

Italy's current coronavirus rules include restrictions on movement within the country.

The whole country is under a nighttime curfew from 10pm-5am, and this means no unnecessary travel is permitted during those hours.

If you need to go out during curfew hours, for example to go to work, you can. But you'll have to justify your reasons for doing so using a self-certification form. The form is only available in Italian and must be completed in Italian – see our guide to downloading and completing it here.
Other rules however vary depending on where in Italy you are, due to a new three-tier system based on the local coronavirus situation in each of the 20 regions.
The current rules came into effect on November 6th, and the classification has already been updated twice since then.

The regions are divided as follows, as of November 13th:

What are the travel restrictions?
People in the highest-risk red and orange zones are told to stay within their comune, or municipality, and are only allowed to leave for work, study, health or other essential reasons, as Italy brings in the strictest measures since its two-month spring lockdown was eased.

In red zones, restrictions on movement resemble those imposed earlier this year during a severe national lockdown, with residents' movements curtailed further.

READ ALSO: How Italy decides which regions are Covid-19 red zones

In addition to not being allowed to travel from one municipality to another, people in red zones are not allowed to move around within their own area, unless for essential reasons, using either public or private transport.

If you need to go out for work, health or other essential reasons these must be justified using a self-certification form
Can I travel between regions?
You can only enter or leave an orange or red zone for urgent reasons.
This means residents in a yellow zone would not be allowed to enter a red zone region without a proven need to do so, and vice versa.
The rules also forbid non-essential travel between provinces or comunes within red and orange-zone regions.
Just as during phase one of Italy's emergency, you're allowed to travel between regions or municipalities for work, health reasons or other emergencies.

What counts as an urgent reason for travel?

The decree states that people can travel for “proven work or health reasons and situations of urgency.”

So if you have a medical appointment or need to be somewhere for work or business, you're allowed to travel.

If you work in one region and live in another, you are allowed to travel between them.

Travel to and from school to drop off and pick up your child is of course allowed.

And if you're currently in a different part of Italy than the area where you are registered as a permanent resident, you are of course allowed to travel home.

If you're in Italy at the moment and need to leave the country for an urgent reason, this will be permitted, whether or not you are a resident.

However for all of the above trips you'll need to fill out a self-certification form.and be able to provide proof, as police may check your story.

What exactly counts as an emergency or a “situation of need” can in some cases be open to interpretation by local authorities.

If  in doubt, contact your local comune or caribinieri police station before you leave.

Can I stop along the way?

If your drive is a long one and you'd usually make one or two overnight stops within Italy, there is nothing in the emergency decree which expressly states that this isn't allowed – and hotels can remain open everywhere, including in red zones.

There are limits on entering and leaving both orange and red zones for non-essential reasons, however, and you would need to complete a self-certification form and be prepared to explain your stop if you encounter a police check.

Every region and city has its own rules and restrictions in place, so you'll need to check the local rules if planning to stop somewhere.

Can I enter or leave the country?

Returning home is a valid reason for travel, whether you're returning to Italy or leaving Italy for another country.

Italian citizens and residents have the right to enter the country under current travel rules. However, there may be some measures such as mandatory testing depending on where you're travelling from.

You can also travel if you need to leave the country.

Whether you've been staying at your second home, or your visa is about to expire, if you need to leave Italy to get home this counts as an essential reason for travelling.
If you're driving, motorways and service stations are open as usual and there is no restriction on passing through a red zone such as Lombardy (as long as you're not stopping).
You will need to fill out a self-certification form explaining your reason for travel in case you encounter a police checkpoint. It's the same form you need when going outside under curfew. It's only available in Italian, but here's where to get it and how to fill it out.
For more travel information consult your embassy or see the Italian government's Viaggiare Sicuri website.

Can I use public transport?

Yes. Public transport is still running. However, it's limited to 50 percent of maximum capacity (with the exception of school transport.)

People have also been asked to avoid using public transport however unless absolutely necessary, for example to get to work.
For more information please see the Italian Health Ministry's website (in English).
Find all of The Local's latest coronavirus updates here.

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What to expect when travelling to Italy this spring

If you're planning a visit to Italy in the coming warmer months, here's what you need to know about Covid rules, strikes, and more.

What to expect when travelling to Italy this spring

Spring is one of the best times of year to visit Italy, and with Covid travel restrictions now a thing of the past, international visitors can look forward to a hassle-free trip this year.

READ ALSO: Nine of Italy’s best events to catch in spring 2023

But while Covid’s unlikely to disrupt your plans, upcoming transport strikes and potential drought restrictions could throw some curveballs your way, and it’s always best to plan accordingly.

With this in mind, here’s what to expect on your trip to Italy this spring.

Covid rules

There are no longer any Covid-based requirements for entering Italy from abroad, or for accessing goods and services within the country.

Anyone who tests positive for the virus is required to isolate for up to five days, but can leave as soon as they test negative.

Under current Italian law, those who leave isolation after five days without a negative test should wear an FFP2 mask in public until the tenth day from the onset of symptoms or first positive test result.

Anyone who comes into close contact with someone who has tested positive should wear an FFP2 mask indoors or in crowded spaces up to the fifth day from the last point of contact.

Masks are required in hospitals until April 30th, 2023.

While masks are otherwise no longer mandated in Italy, you’ll still see plenty of people wearing them on public transport and in shops, and in some places you may see signs asking you to put one on as a courtesy to the staff.

Transport strikes

Italy has recently been hit by a series of nationwide transport strikes by workers protesting high living costs and job insecurity. Airports, trains and local public transport services are all affected. 

Several nationwide and local strikes have been announced for late March and April, including an air traffic operators strike on the afternoon of April 2nd and a nationwide train strike from Trenitalia staff on April 14th.

READ ALSO: Calendar: The transport strikes to expect in Italy this spring

Staff at Milan’s main public transport operator, ATM, will strike on March 31st and April 19th.

Keep checking The Local’s strike coverage for the most up to date information on transport strikes.


In the first half of 2022, along with much of the rest of Europe, Italy experienced a record-breaking heatwave and drought, with temperatures more than 10°C above the norm.

Scientists fear Italy may experience further severe drought this spring, in which case some areas could experience water shortages and be subject to restrictions on filling swimming pools and other non-essential uses.

READ ALSO: Why Italy is braced for another major drought this spring

If you’re a regular visitor to Italy, temperatures may be higher than you’re used to for the time of year: check the forecast before coming and pack accordingly.