Free museum week to be introduced in Rome and across Italy in March 2019.Italy's culture minister Alberto Bonisoli has announced that state museums and archaeological sites will have up to 20 annual days of free admission, from 2019.
The museum shake-up by Bonisoli, of the populist Movimento 5 Stelle, includes the inaugural Settimana di Cultura, comprising six days in a row of free admission to Italian museums and archaeological sites.
Bonisoli has reduced Domenica al Museo, the free entry scheme to Italy's museums on the first Sunday of each month, which remains in place during the off-season from October to March. The minister had previously announced his intention to scrap the popular initiative entirely but subsequently backtracked.
Culture officials say the previous system created long queues and overcrowding. Under the new system the dates would be variable, with museum directors authorised to make local decisions taking into account regional differences and seasonal fluctuation in visitor numbers.
In addition, museums will remain free for those under 18 while young people aged between 18 and 25 will be pay the new reduced rate of €2 to enter museums and archaeological sites. Bonsoli said that the raft of new measures, which are set to be introduced in March, are aimed at encouraging a "hunger for culture among young people" and that there would now be "more free entry [to museums] compared to the past."
Separately, Bonisoli recently announced that people aged between 18 and 25 will be able to purchase opera tickets in Italy for the discounted rate of €2. The move is offered by 14 Italian opera foundations including La Scala in Milan, Teatro dell'Opera di Roma, La Fenice in Venice and S. Carlo in Naples.