EXPLAINED: How Italy has tightened the ’green pass’ rules in September

EXPLAINED: How Italy has tightened the ’green pass’ rules in September
Photo: Andreas Solaro/AFP
Italy’s coronavirus 'green pass' health certificate is now obligatory for school staff and for passengers on long-distance public transport, including trains, domestic flights and ferries.

The changes came in on September 1st under the Italian government’s latest expansion of the certificazione verde or ‘green pass’ scheme.

Proof of vaccination, testing or recovery has already been required since August 6th in order to enter many cultural and leisure venues across Italy, including museums, theatres, gyms, and indoor seating areas in restaurants.

Here’s a look at the new requirements and what you’ll need to do to meet them, whether you live in Italy or are just visiting.

Public transport

The pass will now be required when boarding domestic flights and ferries as well as international services. It will not be a requirement on city buses, trams or other forms of local public transport.

All passengers on high-speed train services and on Intercity services will also need to show a ‘green pass’. The pass will be verified on board the train along with tickets, national rail operator Trenitalia has stated. 

READ ALSO: Q&A: Your questions answered about Italy’s Covid health pass

Passengers who can’t show a valid green pass will be asked to move to an area reserved for passengers without a green pass and will then have to get off at the next stop, according to Trenitalia.

The Strait of Messina ferry route, which connects Sicily with mainland Italy, is considered a local public transport route and is exempted from the requirement, according to the Italian news site Avvenire.

Schools

Under the new decree law, school and university staff will need to show the pass to enter the premises in the new school year, as will university students.

For schools, the extension is a key part of the government’s strategy to ensure that pupils can learn in person, after constantly changing Covid restrictions kept them in and out of classrooms for much of the past 18 months.

The government is also considering a further expansion which would make the pass mandatory for employees at workplaces deemed essential, including public offices and supermarkets.

What is the Italian ‘green pass’ and who needs it?

The Italian Covid-19 health certificate proves bearers have either been vaccinated with at least one dose, have recovered from Covid-19 within the past six months, or have tested negative in the previous 48 hours.

You can download the pass containing a QR code to their phone, or print it out if they prefer to carry a paper copy. If you were vaccinated or tested in Italy, find out more about getting your pass here.

Children under 12 are exempt from the ‘green pass’ requirement. The rules apply to everyone over that age, including tourists and non-resident visitors.

However you may not need the Italian version of the health pass, depending on which country you’re visiting from.

Italy recognises all equivalent health passes from other EU countries and proof of immunisation issued from any of these five non-EU countries, including on paper.

READ ALSO: Can tourists and visitors use Italy’s Covid ‘green pass’ to access museums, restaurants and trains?

That means visitors just need to carry the official proof of vaccination issued by your home country, such as a CDC-approved vaccination card from the US, a provincial immunisation card from Canada or an NHS vaccination certificate from the UK.

If you do not have a pass from one of these countries and plan on using public transport or going to a venue or event in Italy that requires a green pass, you will need to get tested in Italy (or elsewhere in the EU) in order to claim a certificate that remains valid for 48 hours.


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