As Italy seeks to restart its tourism industry, the country has reopened to some international visitors from Wednesday June 3rd – but not to everyone. Here are the new rules, explained.
Italy has now begun to allow some international arrivals, and has also reopened regional borders, as planned under the government’s latest emergency decree.
The country hopes to attract summer tourism, with the economy heavily dependent on the large tourism industry, however the government has repeatedly urged caution at what it describes as one of the riskiest stages of reopening.
Can I travel to Italy now?
Most of Italy’s travel restrictions have been dropped from June 3rd, meaning that residents and visitors alike can move freely throughout the country for any reason – including tourism.
But for international tourists, the rules depend on which country you’re travelling from (more information below).
From June 3rd Italy plans to drop the quarantine requirement for people arriving from certain countries, namely:
- The 26 other members of the European Union
- Schengen Area members Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland
- The United Kingdom
- Andorra, Monaco, San Marino and Vatican City
Tourists arriving from these countries will not face any restrictions upon entering Italy, though depending on their own country’s rules they may be required to quarantine when they return home.
Likewise, Italian residents who travel abroad will not be required to quarantine when they return to Italy.
However, people travelling from Italy may face checks or restrictions imposed by other countries. For examples, Austria has chosen to keep controls in place on its Italian border.
Travel restrictions are based on where you’re departing from or travelling to, not on your nationality. And of course the usual visa requirements apply.
The latest Italian emergency decree states that you will face restrictions when entering Italy if you’re coming from one of the approved countries (listed above) but have visited somewhere not on the list within 14 days of travelling to Italy.
For example, an Irish resident who visited Russia, returned to Ireland, then flew to Italy less than two weeks later would be required to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival, as would a US resident who connected in Germany on their way to Italy.
When will other foreign tourists be allowed back?
People from other countries will have to wait a bit longer before visiting Italy.
According to the government decree, tourists from outside the countries listed above will not be allowed to enter Italy until at least June 15th.
In late May the EU set out plans for a phased restart of summer travel, urging member states to reopen its internal borders, while recommending that external borders remain shut for most travel.
Due to the coordinated closure by all EU membe states, the EU’s external borders effectively remain closed to non-essential travel until at least June 15th
The Italian government is expected to confirm when exactly Italy will reopen to other visitors by June 14th, which is when the current rules expire.
What if I need to travel to Italy from outside Europe for urgent reasons?
People who officially reside in Italy but are currently overseas may return to their Italian home, while anyone who can demonstrate that they need to enter the country for urgent work or health reasons or in an emergency will also be allowed in.
Upon arrival they must observe a mandatory 14-day quarantine, giving the address where they’ll self-isolate and informing local health authorities.
Many countries currently have issued travel warnings for Italy or even blanket bans on all overseas travel, advising residents to cancel or postpone their trip if possible. Check your embassy’s latest advice before planning to travel.
Photo: Marco Sabadin/AFP