Covid-19: Italy's new travel rules for Christmas

Italy introduces blanket quarantine over Christmas season to discourage travel in a bid to avert a new spike of covid-19.

Italy's latest emergency decree includes strict travel rules over the Christmas period, affecting both domestic and international travel, effective until 15 January 2021.

From 10 December, all travellers arriving in Italy from EU member states, the Schengen Area and the UK must present a medical document proving they have undertaken a “molecular or antigen test, carried out by means of swab” and tested negative for covid-19 within 48 hours of their arrival.

Christmas quarantine

Anyone arriving in Italy from abroad between 21 December and 6 January 2021 will be required to quarantine for 14 days. This rule includes Italians and anyone arriving from the EU, regardless of nationality or their departure destination.

In addition, the rules state that "anyone who enters Italy from 7 to 15 January, having stayed or transited in other countries, for tourism, between 21 December and 6 January will have to undergo quarantine."

Countries on ‘safe’ list

Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Rwanda, Singapore, Thailand and Uruguay are on the list of 'safe' countries outside Europe from which travel to Italy is permitted for any reason, including tourism.

Residents from these countries are free to visit Italy but are required to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

Countries where Italy has relaxed travel rules

Armenia, Bahrein, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Kosovo, Kuwait, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Oman, Panama, Peru.

Italy has relaxed its previous restrictions against these countries whose residents can now enter Italy once they provide proof of “foreseen reasons” such as work, health, study or emergency, however they will be obliged to quarantine for 14 days on arrival.

Countries with new restrictions

Italy has removed Canada, Georgia and Tunisia from its non-essential travel list. This means that residents of these countries must show proof of their urgent work or emergency situations to enter Italy, where they will be required to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival.

Rest of the world

There is no change in travel rules for everywhere else outside the countries listed above, including China, India, Russia or the US, whose residents can travel to Italy for essential reasons – work, study, health or family emergency – but not as tourists. Those who are eligible to travel to Italy from these countries must self-isolate for 14 days on arrival.

Vatican and San Marino

There are no limitations on travel to and from these tiny sovereign states located within the borders of Italy.

Cruises

Italy has suspended all cruises from departing, stopping over or arriving in Italian ports from 21 December to 6 January.

Domestic travel restrictions

In addition to international travel, Italy has restricted domestic travel from 21 December to 6 January 2021. No non-essential travel is allowed in or out of Italy's regions during this period.

It will also not be possible to move outside one's town or city of residence on Christmas Day, St Stephen's Day and New Year's Day. *However Italian news agency ANSA reported on 10 December that the government is considering relaxing the travel rules on these three festive days. We will update this article if anything changes.

For full, detailed official information regarding travel to Italy, check the Viaggiare Sicuri website (in Italian) or Italy's health ministry website (in Italian and English).