As of January 2020, the health emergency caused by COVID-19 persists worldwide.
All persons intending to travel abroad, regardless of destination or reason for travel, should consider that any journey during this period may involve a health risk.
In particular, if molecular or antigenic testing is required for entry into Italy or returning to Italy from a foreign destination, travellers should consider the possibility of a positive test result.
In this case, it is not possible to travel by commercial means, and you will be subject to the quarantine and containment procedures provided by the hosting country.
With some possible differences due to different local regulations, such procedures also affect those known as ‘contacts’. ‘Contacts’ are those who came in contact with the positive person and are also subject to quarantine/self-isolation imposed by the local authorities of the hosting country and who, to protect public health, may return to Italy only at the end of the self-isolation period. Therefore, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs recommends planning every aspect of the travel carefully, including the possibility of spending an additional period abroad. The Ministry also suggests signing a health insurance policy that also covers the risks associated with COVID-19.
Taking effect from 16 December until the end of the state of emergency and, in any case, no later than 31 January 2022, this Ordinance issued by the Minister of Health establishes that those whoever enters Italy coming from any of the countries included in List C of Annex 20 to the Decree of the President of the Council of Ministers of 2 March 2021 must: fill in the Passenger Locator Form (PLF), present a green Covid-19 certification providing proof of vaccination or recovery (or equivalent certification), and also present a negative swab test (either molecular, if taken within 48 hours prior to entry into Italy, or antigen, if taken within 24 hours prior to entry into Italy). Whoever is unable to present a green Covid-19 certification of vaccination or recovery will nevertheless be required to present a negative swab test, as stated above, undergo self-isolation for a period of 5 days, under medical supervision, and then mandatorily repeat the (molecular or antigen) swab test.
The countries included in list D of Annex 20 has also been updated. Persons travelling from these countries are required to: fill in the Passenger Locator Form (PLF), present a green Covid-19 certification providing proof of vaccination (or equivalent certification), and also present a negative swab test (either molecular, if taken within 72 hours prior to entry into Italy, or antigen, if taken within 24 hours prior to entry into Italy). The time limit for the molecular test is reduced to 48 hours for persons travelling from the United Kingdom. Whoever is unable to present a green Covid-19 certification of vaccination (only travellers from the USA, Canada and Japan may present a certificate of recovery instead of the vaccination certification) will nevertheless be required to present a negative swab test, as stated above, undergo self-isolation for a period of 5 days, under medical supervision, and then mandatorily repeat the (molecular or antigen) swab test.
The guidance for travel from South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Eswatini, provided for by the Ordinance of the Minister of Health of 26 November 2021, is also extended until the end of the state of emergency and, in any case, no later than 31 January 2022.
(For details, click on the link at the bottom of the box)
From 26 November to 15 December 2021, prohibits the entry into and transit through Italy of persons who have stayed in or transited through South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Eswatini in the previous fourteen days, with the exception of Italian citizens who have been registered as resident in Italy since before the date of this Ordinance, provided they do not show symptoms of Covid-19. (For more details, click on the link at the bottom of the box).
The Ordinance also bans air traffic from the above-mentioned countries.
Since 26 October, this order by the Ministry of Health has abolished the special restrictions previously applying to arrivals from Brazil, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, which have since been included in list E and are therefore subject to the rules applying to those countries. The countries included in lists C and D have also been updated (for more details, click on the link at the bottom of the box).
As of 28 September, this Ministry of Health Order has established Covid-free travel corridors for Aruba, Maldives, Mauritius, Seychelles, Dominican Republic and Egypt (limitedly to the tourist zones of Sharm El Sheikh and Marsa Alam), returning from which it will NOT be necessary to quarantine. To benefit from this exception, passengers must:
- Upon boarding, show their Green Pass and a negative test taken within the last 48 hours;
- Take an additional test at the place of their destination, if they are staying abroad for more than seven days;
- Present a negative test taken within 48 hours before boarding, when returning to Italy;
- Take a further final test, with a negative result, at the airport, upon arrival to Italy;
Effective from 23 September, the Ministry of Health – through this Circular – has recognised the equivalence of several vaccines administered by foreign health authorities to those carried out under the National Vaccine Plan for the Prevention of SARS-CoV-2. Namely:
- Vaccines recognised by EMA – European Medicines Agency (see Annex 1 to the Circular);
- Covishield (Serum Institute of India), manufactured under license from AstraZeneca;
- R-CoVI (R-Pharm), manufactured under licence from AstraZeneca;
- Covid-19 vaccine-recombinant (Fiocruz), manufactured under licence from AstraZeneca.
As a result of this recognition:
- Italian citizens (including those residing abroad) and their cohabiting family members, regardless of whether they are registered with the National Health Service or the SASN (health services for seafarers), and all persons registered for any reason with the National Health Service who have been vaccinated abroad with the above vaccines or who have recovered abroad from COVID-19, may apply for a Green Pass, if they find themselves in Italy, from their competent local health authorities.
- All other foreign citizens vaccinated abroad with the above-mentioned vaccines are entitled to access all venues and services for which a Green Pass is mandatorily required in Italy (see box below). In order to be recognised as equivalent to a Green Pass, the foreign vaccination certificate must contain the following information: the personal details of the holder, the details of the vaccine, the date(s) of administration of the vaccine, the identity of the certificate issuer; and the above information must also be written in Italian, English, French, Spanish or German or, if issued in a different language, must be accompanied by a sworn translation.
THE COVID-19 GREEN PASS: WHERE IS IT MANDATORY?
Since 6 December 2021 two different Covid-19 green passes have been introduced:
A basic Green Pass: issued to persons who test negative to an antigen or molecular swab test;
A super Green Pass: issued to fully vaccinated persons with a full course of an approved vaccine or who have recovered from Covid-19.
The basic Green Pass is valid for all essential services and for work, while a super Green Pass is required, among other things, to access entertainment venues, such as cinemas, theatres and sports stadiums. Click HERE for a detailed list of the venues and services that can be accessed with each type of Green Pass.
Find more information about the green pass at https://www.dgc.gov.it/web/