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EXPLAINED: How has Italy changed its rules on travel from the US and Canada?

Fully vaccinated travelers who’ve been hoping to visit Italy this summer now have the green light after the country announced it would drop the quarantine rules from this week.

EXPLAINED: How has Italy changed its rules on travel from the US and Canada?
Photo: Miguel Medina/AFP

Italian Health Minister Roberto Speranza announced in a Facebook post that Italy would allow entry from the United States, Canada and Japan under the same terms as the EU’s ‘green pass’ scheme as of June 21st.

That means the ten-day quarantine rule will not apply to passengers who can provide proof of being fully vaccinated or having recovered from Covid-19, or can show a negative result from a test taken within the 48 hours before arrival in Italy.

READ ALSO: ‘Health pass’: What documents do Americans need for travel to Italy?

Until now, Italy had only waived the quarantine rule for those who took special ‘Covid-free’ flights operated by four airlines.

The scheme allowed passengers flying from 10 designated airports to skip quarantine if they showed negative results in a series of tests – prior to departure, at boarding, and upon arrival. 

How do I enter Italy under the ‘green pass’ rules?

The Europe-wide health certificate scheme allows quarantine-free travel between EU member states as of July 1st.

Italy has already started rolling out its own version of the digital document, and has chosen to also recognise equivalent documents from some non-EU countries with high rates of vaccination – and to begin allowing those travellers to enter Italy before the EU-wide rollout date.

This means you don’t need to download an Italian ‘green pass’ – you can instead use documents issued in your home country and these will be accepted by Italian authorities.

The Italian government’s updated rules state that people can now enter Italy quarantine-free from the US, Canada or Japan by presenting one of the following health documents:

  1. Certificate of vaccination – such as a US CDC-issued vaccination card or EU green certificate. Keep in mind you must be fully vaccinated, meaning you have had your last vaccination 14 days before departure.
  2. OR
    A negative antigen, PCR, or molecular test result from a test taken within 48 hours of arrival in Italy.
  3. OR
    A certificate of Recovery from Covid dated no more than six months before arrival to Italy.

All passengers travelling to Italy still need to fill in a passenger locator form giving their contact details. Find it here.

Anyone who cannot show the requested documents may be required to undergo a ten-day quarantine period on arrival.

The Italian government reminds travellers that new restrictions “may be adopted at national and/or regional level depending on the risk assessment carried out on a regular basis by the Health Ministry.”

For further details of the requirements, see the Italian Foreign Ministry’s website (in English), or contact your airline or the Italian embassy in your country.

For more information about the current coronavirus situation and health measures in Italy please see the Health Ministry’s website (in English).

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COVID-19 RULES

Masks to remain mandatory on Italian flights after May 16th

It will still be obligatory for passengers to wear masks on flights to Italy until mid-June, despite the end of the EU-wide requirement on Monday, May 16th, the Italian government has confirmed.

Masks to remain mandatory on Italian flights after May 16th

The Italian government reiterated on Friday that its current mask-wearing rules remain in place until June 15th, reports newspaper Corriere della Sera.

This means the mask mandate will still apply to all air passengers travelling to or from Italy, despite the end of an EU-wide requirement to wear masks on flights and at airports across the bloc from Monday.

READ ALSO: Reader question: What type of mask will I need for travel to Italy?

National regulations take precedence, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) confirmed when announcing the end of the EU rules.

“Wearing face masks at airports and inflight should be aligned with national measures on wearing masks in public transport and transport hubs,” they said in a joint statement published on May 11th.

READ ALSO: Why are so many Italians still wearing face masks in shops?

“If either the departure or destination States require the wearing of face masks on public transport, aircraft operators should require passengers and crew to comply with those requirements inflight, beyond 16 May 2022.

“Further, as of 16 May 2022, aircraft operators, during their pre-flight communications as well as during the flight, should continue to encourage their passengers and crew members to wear face masks during the flight as well as in the airport, even when wearing a face mask is not required”.

The Spanish government also said on Thursday that air passengers would have to continue wearing face masks on planes.

Italy’s current rules specify that higher-grade FFP2 masks should be worn on all forms of public transport, including buses, trams, regional and high-speed trains, ferries, and planes.

Though rules were eased in some settings from May 1st, masks also remain a requirement until June 15th at Italy’s cinemas and theatres, hospitals and care homes, indoor sporting event and concert venues, schools and universities.

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