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I've read other posts -- but I must be thick as I still don't know the answer!

Hi...I've read numerous posts on this topic but I am still confused about the timing of taking a rapid antigen test. If I provide my details here can someone provide a specific timeframe? The more I research this topic the more confused I become.

Here are my particulars: Non-stop flight Newark to Rome 5:15 PM departure on SATURDAY and an arrival in Rome at 7:40 AM SUNDAY -- what time do I have to have completed my rapid antigen test by?

I was hoping it was based on 24 hours before DEPARTURE from NEWARK but now that I read info on the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs site it seems to be based on 24 hours prior to ARRIVAL in ROME. Please help me understand this as I'm going to need an Advil soon!

Posted by
3349 posts

Within 24 hours of arrival for antigen test
So take the test on Saturday morning

Posted by
21037 posts

There's a 6-hour time difference between the US east coast and Italy. You are scheduled to land in Italy at 7:40 AM on Sunday, which is 1:40 AM on Sunday in the US. You need to test no more than 24 hours before arrival, so not before 7:40 AM Saturday Italian time, which is 1:40 AM Saturday in the US. So you need to test the day of departure, but not before 1:40 AM.

Posted by
5112 posts

acraven's answer is excellent. I wanted to mention that I would do a proctored home test that you order in advance. It only takes about 20 minutes and you get instant results.

Posted by
124 posts

Thank you all -- especially Acraven for that detailed explanation that I actually understood. I agree that the home proctored test seems to be the way to go. Did I read correctly that the Abbott BinaxNOW antigen test is accepted in Italy?

Posted by
21037 posts

I may be facing the same situation in April (though with United rather than Delta), so I look forward to hearing some real-world results of your encounter with the airline employees.

Posted by
5112 posts

I wanted to point out that as of 1/15/2022 private health insurance is required to cover the cost of home Covid test kits. (or at least a certain amount per test). Save your receipts and submit them to your health insurance company.

Posted by
859 posts

Thank you for this post, I was feeling the same way. Now I understand the confusion. U.S. rules state one thing, Italy another. But we have to go by Italy’s.

Plus, we need the expensive binax tests, correct? The ones that say “emed proctored” or something to that effect. We will need to take ours after 2:00 am the day of our departure, and leave our home at about 9:00 am for the airport. I’m concerned CVS won’t be doing them early in the morning like 7, so will probably have to go that route.

I wish Italy would just do the 24 hour before departure. Would make life so much easier.

Posted by
859 posts

Aimee, aren’t the PCR expensive? Now, those can be 72 hours before arrival? And..you have to go someplace to have it done, correct?

Posted by
256 posts

We took the proctored antigen test at home for a cruise in early January. Be warned, it took us 7 hours to complete registration, get a proctor and complete the test. This was two days before the cruise and was very stressful. There was more than a few people on the ship that had the same experience. You might want to order an extra test to “practice” the whole process ahead of time if you aren’t a tech expert with newer tech phones/computers. My iPhone 6 was too old to use. The test went smoothly once we hooked up with the proctor. Print out the results as a backup proof of results. Note: it was great to finally get in a trip, just have to be ready to accept changing rules.

Posted by
859 posts

Thanks, Aimee. I’m starting to finally figure this all out. The PCR can be 72 hours out, though, correct?

Posted by
2564 posts

just to follow up, yes there are two types of BINAX tests make sure you are getting the one you need. Rule of thumb, the proctored one is going to be the expensive one.

Posted by
1595 posts

Lulu, instead of writing this all down, bookmark the topic on the forum. I also have sites bookmarked in topic folders on my google browser for quick reference.

Posted by
119 posts

We went to Italy in November and we had the same timeframe questions. We flew United and on their app they told us exactly to the minute when we would be within the timeframe to take our test. I believe it was 72 hours before the flight was scheduled to leave Newark for Rome. The point being that the airlines has your back on this because everyone onboard the flight was required to have that test.