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Italy imposes new travel rules over Christmas

Italy updates its covid travel rules for EU visitors ahead of the festive season.

People travelling to Italy from European Union countries must now undergo a covid test before departure - including those who are vaccinated - while unvaccinated EU travellers must quarantine for five days on arrival.

As of 16 December all travellers from EU countries are required to have a negative antigen test within 24 hours, or negative PCR result within 48 hours of arrival in Italy.

The new travel rules, in force until at least 31 January, extend a requirement already in place for arrivals from many non-EU countries.

The pre-travel covid test requirement applies to everyone, even those who are double or triple-vaccinated against covid-19.

Travellers who are unvaccinated are obliged to undergo a five-day quarantine on arrival. This is followed by another covid test and if the result is negative the quarantine ends.

The five-day quarantine rules do not apply to children under the age of 12 if travelling with adults who are vaccinated or have recovered from covid, Italian news agency ANSA reported, citing government sources.

The new ordinance extends a ban on entry into Italy from eight southern African countries introduced in late November amid concerns over the Omicron variant.

Italy's existing rules for travel from non-EU countries do not change. Travellers from non-EU countries, including the UK, must show a negative covid test on arrival.

Full travel requirements for each country, including the US, can be found in English on the website of the Italian health ministry (currently being updated with the latest rules).

For official information relating to the covid-19 situation in Italy - in English - see the health ministry website. Photo credit: VILTVART / Shutterstock.com.

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