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Q&A: How does Italy’s new Covid ‘super green pass’ work?

The Local Italy
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Q&A: How does Italy’s new Covid ‘super green pass’ work?
Photo: Andreas SOLARO / AFP

The Italian government has brought in new 'super green pass' rules aimed at keeping the coronavirus infection rate under control this winter. Here's what you need to know.


Italy has introduced new restrictions for those who are not vaccinated against or recovered from Covid-19 under so-called ‘super green pass’ rules.

The measures, which Prime Minister Mario Draghi says are needed to “preserve normality”, will be in place until at least January 15th, with the possibility that they will be extended further into 2022.

The Italian government announced the details of the new restrictions on Sunday afternoon, just hours before the ‘super’ or rafforzato (reinforced) green pass rules came into effect.

As the government on Monday morning published full details of the new rules (find them here, in Italian) here’s our latest update with what you need to know.

What is Italy’s ‘super green pass’ and how have the rules changed?

Italy has been requiring some form of ‘green pass’ or health certificate within the country as well as for travel since August.

But now, the 'strengthened' version of the green pass will be used to prove vaccination or recovery, in cases where a negative test result will no longer suffice.

"The reinforced green pass only applies to those who are either vaccinated or cured," stated a government press release.

From December 6th, basic green passes issued based on negative test results will no longer be valid for entry to many cultural and leisure venues.


Where is the ‘super green pass’ required?

Those who are not vaccinated or recovered will now be unable to access many venues where the green pass was previously required. 

This applies to theatres, cinemas, concerts, indoor restaurants, and sporting events - regardless of which coloured zone they are in under Italy’s four-tiered system of risk assessment: 

The government on Sunday issued further details of how the green pass would apply differently in different settings and under different tiers. See the full breakdown here.

How do you get a ‘super green pass’?

If you already have an Italian green pass due to being vaccinated against or recovered from Covid, you don't need to do anything to upgrade it.

These certificates will automatically be considered a ‘super green pass’, and users can go on as before.

The Italian health ministry announced that its verification app used to check passes has been updated to reflect the changes.

Due to the large number of rule changes recently, many people in Italy believe that a 'super green pass' refers to one issued based on three doses of a vaccine.

But the name in fact refers to passes based on any number of vaccine doses, or recovery from Covid-19.

Updated green passes will be issued following booster jabs, showing an extended validity period. These updated passes will also be considered 'super green passes'.

What do I do if I can't download my green pass?

When you get a first, second or third dose of a vaccine in Italy your personal data should be uploaded to the national health ministry database, which will then release an updated green pass automatically. 

“If you have had a booster dose of vaccine, remember that a new Covid-19 green certification will be issued,” states the health ministry’s official green pass website.

“You will receive a message via SMS or email with a new AUTHCODE code to download it. If you do not receive this within 48 hours of vaccination you can try to retrieve it yourself on this site.”

This advice may not work for foreign residents who are not registered with the national health service, however.

If you have not received your updated green pass (including if you are not registered with the national health service) the current advise is to email your local health office (ASL or USL) to request that the code be resent. You will need to submit proof of your most recent vaccination, a copy of your ID, and any other details requested by the office.

If this doesn't work, you’ll likely need to make a phone call to your regional health authority or speak to your doctor or pharmacist to see how they can help you.

Do these rules apply to foreign visitors?

All previous health measures including green pass rules have applied to everyone in the country aged over 12 regardless of nationality or residency, and this continues to be the case with the new restrictions.

It is important to note however that the new decree only covers domestic rules and does not mention changes to restrictions on international travel. So you do not currently need a ‘super green pass’ at the border.

READ ALSO: How do Italy’s new Covid green pass rules affect tourists?


Do the ‘super green pass’ rules apply to children?

Italy's current green pass rules do not apply to under-12s and this will remain the case under the new decree.

Italy is currently recommending vaccinations for all those aged over 12 years old and has just approved the administration of vaccines for 5-11 year olds, though it’s not yet known when jabs for younger children will be made available.

There are no plans to extend the green pass requirement to under-12s.

Please note that The Local cannot advise on individual cases. For further details about Italy’s current Covid-19 health measures please see the Italian Health Ministry’s website (available in English).



Comments (5)

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Homepage 2022/02/13 03:17
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irene_60e35c269c38c 2022/01/13 21:21
I have a question regarding length of validity of the pass. My understanding from the article is that a green pass used to be valid for 12 months, and now it will be 9. I have other people telling me that starting February, it will be 6. I traveled from the US to Italy in Oct/Nov 2021 without a green pass, but used my CDC card everywhere with no problem. My question is if I were vaccinated and boosted longer than 6 months from my future travel date, does that present a problem for me? For example, my husband was boosted (3rd dose) in October 2021. We want to travel in May of 2022. Because his last dose will by then be 7 months old....will that be a problem. Or is the fact that we've had 3 doses, no matter how old they are, ok?
Anonymous 2021/12/09 20:31
We have US CDC certificates which have been accepted everywhere until today. We were denied entry to the Mercato Centrale Roma because we did not have a green pass on our phones. Does anyone else have experience with the new green pass rules and an American CDC certificate?
  • Anonymous 2021/12/10 16:09
    My internet is behaving badly so hopefully, there won't be duplicate responses to your answer. I tried to use my CDC card in Arezzo at a restaurant that had accepted it before, this time (Dec. 5th) I was turned away but it was accepted at another place. I've used it at the Florence mercato without a problem. I believe it's how well a person is informed as to whether or not you'll have a problem. I'm going to ask my local health department if there is some way to upload the CDC info to my records here (doubtful). What I am going to do is print the page on the Health Ministry website which references the CDC card as acceptable in place of the Green Pass, and carry it with me. I haven't had a lot of issues with the CDC card until Arezzo and I've traveled back and forth from the US this past month alone. Hotels and other places here accepted it without a problem.
Anonymous 2021/11/26 01:05
Will the super green pass be required for museums as well?
martina_415889 2021/11/25 20:00
I wonder for kids 12-15 from the UK, that have had only one vaccine, will they be allowed to get on ski lifts with a negative Covid test? If not, this will be a blow for Uk tourists going skiing this winter

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