Italy launches 'Covid-Free' flights between Rome and Milan

Rapid covid-19 tests for passengers departing on Fiumicino-Linate flights with results back in half an hour.

Fiumicino airport in Rome and Linate airport in Milan will offer rapid covid-19 tests to passengers departing on certain daily flights between the two Italian cities, in trials beginning today.

Passengers will only be allowed to board the planes if they have tested negative for covid-19, either availing of the airport's free swab test - which offers results in 30 minutes - or showing certified proof that they have tested negative following a swab test within the previous 72 hours.

The experimental scheme will affect two of Alitalia's seven daily flights between the two cities, from 16 September until 16 October, in an attempt to kick-start an aviation industry left reeling by the coronavirus crisis.

Fiumicino already offers rapid testing to passengers arriving from Croatia, Greece, Malta and Spain, and airport authorities have not ruled out extending tests to passengers on flights to and from other destinations, according to Italian media.

The news coincides with a major international recognition of Fiumicino (FCO), also known as Leonardo da Vinci airport, which was awarded a 5-star rating for its efficient response to the covid-19 crisis.

In August Fiumicino, along with Rome's smaller airport Ciampino, became the first airports in the European Union to receive the Airport Health Accreditation for the fight against the spread of covid-19, from the Airports Council International (ACI).

The ACI held up Rome's airports as an example of best practice for the entire air transport sector, with Fiumicino opening a drive-in centre for coronavirus tests in its long stay car park earlier this month.

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Address 00054 Fiumicino, Metropolitan City of Rome, Italy

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Italy launches 'Covid-Free' flights between Rome and Milan

00054 Fiumicino, Metropolitan City of Rome, Italy