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New Covid rules in Italy: to summarize

The new decree has been issued, so there are some rules starting today. Officially are valid until the 31st f January, but is possibile will be extended.
- green pass (or similar CDC document): is obtained with a full vaccination (two doses, plus booster if required), healed by Covid, doing a swab.
- Super Green pass (or similar CDC document): is obtained with a full vaccination (two dosis, plus booster if required), healed by Covid.

The new rules are:
- face masks (FFP2 or better, surgical, hand made) are compulsory outdoor, doesn't matter the color of the Region. Are mandatory (like before) even indoor in places like restaurants, bars, shops, supermarkets...
- face mask (FFP2 or better): are compulsory in indoor crowded places (means, are required to enter, even if the place is almost empty!), like theatres, cinemas, sport domes and so on. Is mandatory in stadiums, even if outdoor.
- Super green pass is now required to enter in bars (even if you only drink a coffee at the counter), restaurants, and similar places. Is required even to enter to sport events (stadiums, indoor domes and so on). Is required to enter in gyms, pools, spas and so on. Is required even in museums. To be short: any place except shops.
- The green pass (and the super, of course) will be valid only 6 months! Are calculated from the last injection (second dose or booster). So check your CDC certificate. This rule will be applied from the 1st of February. At the moment is valid 9 months.
- All public free events with free access has been canceled. For example: new year's eve concert and fireworks show in the main square of the city. All events in theatres, restaurants instead can be confirmed with the rules of the indoor places (FFP2 mask + super green pass). All night clubs (discoteche) are closed until the end of January (but is still in discussion if this rule starts today or from the 2nd of January).
- a swab is mandatory before you enter in Italy from another country. Random tests will be done even when you arrive and if you are positive you have to respect quarantine of 10 days. Any traveller not vaccinated have to respect a quarantine period.

Nothing else at the moment.
For a vaccinated foreign traveller the only great change is the mask mandatory even outdoor. Not a big effort in my opinion and not a reason to be worried to travel in Italy. Enjoy a period where there aren't so many tourists!

Posted by
69 posts

"Random tests will be done even when you arrive and if you are positive you have to respect quarantine of 10 days."

This summary is from the Tripadvisor Forum, courtesy of GAC:
"To further help contain the spread of Covid-19, ALL PERSONS ENTERING ITALY from abroad (and for whatever reason) will be subject to SPOT COVID-19 TESTS at the point of entry (seaports, rail and road crossings, and especially AIRPORTS). Those found to be positive will be subjected to 10 DAYS OF REQUIRED SELF-ISOLATION at their lodging of choice (in the absence of which, at a Covid hotel) to be monitored for compliance by local health authorities. The self-isolation will end only after a negative followup Covid test is registered. This does not imply that everyone will be tested, rather the tests will be required only of selected persons (which may vary from day to day according to traffic flow and other conditions)."

Posted by
3098 posts

Our boosters were 11/19/21
We fly to Italy 4/26/21
Looks like we will be OK?

Posted by
1 posts

My trip to Italy is planned for April 5, 2022. I am afraid I am quite literal and need a little better explanation. For instance what does "healed" by Covid mean?

Also, I got my booster on 10/03/21. If booster shot needs to be within 6 months, am I not eligible to travel?

One other question, suppose I test positive before returning to the US, are there contingency plans for accommodations available from Rick Steves for quarantining?

Thank you

Posted by
12785 posts

If you had the booster on 10/3 get another booster before leaving sometime in March.
If the last injection was over 6 month earlier you won’t be able to enter museums, which I think is the main purpose why people visit Italy.

Posted by
3098 posts

Probably just a bad translation but it means - have had COVID and recovered — would need documentation from your medical provider

You would need booster no more than 6 months prior to your arrival in Italy, the math is clear
You would not be eligible unless you get another booster

If you are traveling on a RS tour I am sure the tour office can answer your questions about possible quarantine accommodations

Posted by
8400 posts

are there contingency plans for accommodations available from Rick Steves for quarantining?

Definitely a question for RS staff.

I suspect RS will not be formally involved in finding lodging. The tour guide may offer some suggestions, but it will not be like having a pre-booked room reserved as is done during the Tour..... ( that's my guess)

Posted by
155 posts

I don’t understand how I qualify for a Super Green pass. Seems like that is necessary to enter any restaurant?

And this random spot testing to enter Italy….so I need to take a test in the days before I fly and then I’m subject to getting spot tested upon my arrival? That’s a game changer. Why anyone would possibly travel to Italy now is beyond me. We fly Delta. I can rebook up until 4 hours before we fly, covering us in case we test positive for either leg of our trip.

Imagine shelling out for a two week trip and you or your spouse are randomly tested at the airport.

Posted by
3098 posts

Your CDC card serves as your Super Green Pass ( 2 vaccinations plus a booster)
There is no mechanism available for US citizens to obtain a Green pass

Posted by
310 posts

As "healed" I mean "cured", "recovered". A persone formerly positive to Covid now negative and with antibodies present. In EU we have a certificate for it and is written in the super green pass. I suppose there is a similar CDC certificate. If not: do a booster.

Why anyone would possibly travel to Italy now is beyond me.

For USA travellers: remember that USA is in "Group D", so a swab was mandatory to travel to Italy even before the new rules. The possibility to be found positive (so stay in insulation in an hotel for several days, if not in hospital) was present even before.
In any case, if you don't have an hotel or pace to stay insulated, you can go to a Covid hotel: there is at least one in each city.

Also, I got my booster on 10/03/21. If booster shot needs to be within 6 months, am I not eligible to travel

I suppose is the 3rd of October. After the 3rd of April you cannot travel to Italy. The green pass is required for any traveller from countries of the Group D (like USA). If you arrive before, for example the 30th of March, you can enter in Italy and for some days you can even enter in any place, but after the 3rd of April your pass is refused in museums, restaurants, bars and so on. So better be sure to have a booster whom expire after the end of the trip.

Posted by
155 posts

Ricky - you mentioned that they can now test travelers that arrive even after they have taken the pre-flight COVID test. Can you confirm these random spot checks? That's what my comment was in relation to.

Posted by
22 posts

I am a health department clinic vaccinator and we are currently giving boosters (3rd shots) for adults. Until a recommendation from CDC and FDA comes for people to get a 4th shot it won’t be standard operating procedure to give a 4th shot just for travel purposes. I’m supposed to go to Italy in late May and will be more than 6 months out from my booster by then. So unless things change both here and in Italy it may be a trip I (and others) won’t be able to make.

Posted by
310 posts

@ Kevin
Yes, that is what they have declared. Is possibile being checked with a swab even when you arrive in Italy. How many people I don't know. Is even possible that the controls will be concentrated to the people arriving from countries of the European Union, from where the movement is free without swabs before departure.

Is a concern even to Italians. At the moment we are doing the first booster (third inoculation) but nobody hasn't decided yet to do a fourth or maybe more. If I'm right only Israel started with the fourth. My status is the same: I've been vaccinated in August and I have the third and of January: what happens after July? We can only wait the decision of the Minister.

Posted by
5766 posts

Regarding a fourth booster.

One thing to keep in mind is that these rules are not written in stone and change frequently.

Another is that much of the data on effectiveness of the vaccines and recommendations for boosters are determined only shortly before they are needed, because the test groups for the vaccines are only about 60 days ahead of the general public.

So far as a fourth booster, Israel has started with high risk individuals, and drug companies are anticipating that they will be needed, or possibly a revised dosage to account for variants. IF the six months rule for the booster stands, then it will only be after a fourth booster is recommended. If a fourth booster is not recommended, then the rule would likely be revoked (won't require something not medically recommended).

Yes, the uncertainty drives the high level planners mad.

You do need to pay attention, if a fourth shot is recommended, you need to consider timing with your trips planned. In other words, you might not want to be the very first in line, unless your trip is in a couple weeks.

Posted by
66 posts

We are traveling to Italy April 1-8 my son and I are getting booster this month however my daughter and husband had their second Pfizer dose 10/15/21 I believe they are covered until 4/15/21 I’m not sure if they will be getting the booster before our trip. Do they fall under covered at this point?

Posted by
310 posts

Their super green pass expires the 4/15/21, so after that day during a control from the 16th they will not allowed to enter where a "super green pass" is required. If rules will be the same than now.

Posted by
13314 posts

my daughter and husband had their second Pfizer dose 10/15/21 I
believe they are covered until 4/15/21

I think you meant 4/15/2022 (or by European dating, 15/4/2022?)

Posted by
503 posts

Regarding boosters, the pharmacy where I received mine has no restrictions on number of boosters or timing in between. YMMV. I will be back in Italy for the month of September and plan on having another booster done in June.

Posted by
308 posts

We will be arriving in London, then to Croatia and in to Italy. We will have had a test prior to arriving in London. Do we need to test each time we cross a boarder? Ie. Croatia to Italy?

Posted by
3098 posts

You will need to follow whatever the protocol is at the time for UK, Croatia and Italy

Posted by
13 posts

I have a friend that arrived in Italy 3 days ago and provided his CDC vaccine card as proof of vaccine and booster. It was not accepted at restaurants and was told he would have to obtain a Super Green Pass before being allowed in any restaurant, bar or other venue in Italy. Also, he was told he could only use N95 masks.

Posted by
3098 posts

I’ll be curious to hear how that works out since there is technically no mechanism for US citizens to get a Super Green Pass
The CDC card has been widely accepted in Italy for months and the current requirements indicate that it is to be accepted

Where exactly is your friend?

Posted by
35 posts

Can anyone else verify the claim about the CDC Card not being accepted for entrance into restaurants and such? I find that hard to believe since US citizens can't get the Green Card. Also, that is the first I have heard regarding requirement to use only N95 masks.

Posted by
3098 posts

I’m also pretty sure there are no “N95” masks in Italy
It goes by a completely different name/number

Posted by
3098 posts

Your masks will be fine
The above post is an unconfirmed “rumor”

Re-read the post at start of thread

Posted by
310 posts

I have a friend that arrived in Italy 3 days ago and provided his CDC vaccine card as proof of vaccine and booster. It was not accepted at restaurants and was told he would have to obtain a Super Green Pass before being allowed in any restaurant, bar or other venue in Italy.

Wrong. Probably your friend has a long expired CDC card or an illegible one or a false one with a different name.
I work as guide and even if there aren't so many US tourists the CDC certificate has been ALWAYS accepted in EVERY place I went (museums, restaurants, shops, bars, food producers secluded in the countryside....). Sometimes the control take few seconds more than the simple QR code scanning, but nobody cares about it.

Also, he was told he could only use N95 masks.

Half correct. Mask N95 are the ones produced and verified in USA (and the KN95 in China), while the FFP2 are the ones produced and verified in Europe. The law state that are required the FFP2, so I don't know if are accepted even the N95/KN95 in a deep control. In the most of places both version are accepted, because the tests are similar.
They have to be used in the most of indoor spaces and mean of transport. Outdoor a normal surgical mask is enough.
Remember that in Italy the FFP2 are available in any pharmacy, supermarket, mall at a cost of 0.75 - 1.5 euro.

Posted by
3098 posts

Thanks for the clarification Ricky

These “I have a friend” posts should always be taken with a grain of salt and the OFFICIAL policy should be confirmed and followed

Posted by
556 posts

I am in Vignola at the bar closest to the train station did NOT want to accept my CDC card with my three shots (I am boosted as of November). I am going to the Castello tonight for dinner and hope that I will be allowed in to eat. I am registered AIRE so I will get the Super Green Pass as soon as my form is processed.

Posted by
159 posts

My real concern with this is the 6 month expiration of the SGP (CDC Card) after the booster dose. I had my booster dose in October and am ticketed for Italy in late May. There hasn't been an authorization for a 4th shot so it appears I will be out of luck unless the rules change. My tickets are refundable but I am really anxious to get back in the swing of traveling.

Posted by
503 posts

@ Kevin…..upon entering France we had to sign a sworn statement that we agree to random test upon arrival and if positive to quarantine. We were not tested nor did I see anyone being pulled out of line for testing.

@Jack….I would not panic yet regarding 4th booster. Requirements can change. Before the 3rd booster for Moderna was FDA approved we were able to get it from a local pharmacy a full month ahead. I anticipating getting a fourth the same way.

We have EU Certificate issued from France reflecting our 3rd booster (10/15/21) and was hoping to add the QR code to the Swiss Covid app but we will have to get the 4th before applying for the Swiss Covid Certificate since our trip is 7/1/22 - 7/15/22

Posted by
805 posts

Jack, I’m in the same position. Our 6 month ends in March and we have our trip planned for May. However, even if we get a 4th booster we may not go. I don’t want to wear an N95 mask outside all the time and am very concerned about testing positive and having to quarantine. I wasn’t that concerned before the very transmittable Omicron, but I am now.

Posted by
725 posts

Think a lot of us are going to be in the same boat regarding the 6 mo. rule after last booster. We too had an extensive trip planned for late spring through France and Italy that we are now wondering what to do. We will be well beyond the 6 months after our booster, and since they haven't rolled out a 4th, not sure how this is going to play out. I don't mind the mandatory masks one bit. But for now the rules are pretty clear on the six months.

Posted by
21 posts

Re; 6 month window for last vaccine immunization. My booster was August, 2021 (first responder for public transportation on the water), We leave for Italy in mid March. My gut feeling is, in the next couple weeks, CDC will announce 4th vaccine specifics. We leave in two months. There will undoubtedly be changes between now and then; for USA, for Italy, etc. I have my "Steps to Departure/Covid Protocols" document prepared, for what is now. Ready to adapt, ready to adjust. Feel gratitude to travel again.

Posted by
138 posts

So am I understanding this correctly........? I had the J&J (1 dose) on March 13th 2021. I have not had a booster shot yet, but if I get it now (01/16/22) I'll be within Italy's vaccination guidelines for a trip booked June 7th - June 21st of this year?

Also, do I need a "Green Pass" or "Super Green Pass" or will my U.S.A. CDC card work in Italy?

Posted by
310 posts

@ Linda
Since you live in Vignola, come back to the bar with a carabiniere or a policeman to explain that your certificate is valid. If you are fond of that bar, of course. In Vignola we are plenty of better bars.

The FFP2 (or N95) mask is mandatory only indoor in some places. Outdoor can be used any kind of mask.

To anybody else worried about 6 month expiration: remember that even a lot of Italians received the 3rd dose in September/October. For example teachers and professors. Has been decided this short expiration to speed up the vaccination, but is almost sure that in February/March will be decided what to do. 4th dose? A longer period? We don't know yet. Be patient.