Italy holidays: Foreign Office update as airlines and airports operate ‘reduced service’

Holidays: Simon Calder advises to use ‘human’ travel agents

Italy holidays now come with further complications it was announced today. The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) updated its travel advice for Italy this afternoon. The authority explained Italian airlines and airports are operating ‘reduced service’ as the covid pandemic rages on.

Italy travel advice

“Many airlines and airports serving Italy are operating a reduced service and may be subject to change,” detailed the latest FCDO advice.

“You are strongly advised to check your airline’s website, as well as the website for the airport you are intending to fly to for the latest information.

“You should also expect to be asked to wear a face mask throughout your flight and within the airport terminal.”

The country has strict entry rules in place with Britons currently banned.

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“Until March 5, entry into Italy from the UK is currently only permitted for those with official residency in Italy or those with absolute necessity, which must be declared in writing,” stated the FCDO.

“You should contact your travel provider for more information. If you are a UK national resident in Italy, we advise carrying proof of your residence when entering Italy.”

Covid tests are also a requirement.

“Until March 5, all those wishing to fly must present the airline with a negative COVID-19 rapid antigenic or molecular swab test taken no more than 72 hours before travel,” said the FCDO.

“You must also take a COVID-19 rapid antigenic or molecular swab test within 48 hours of entering Italy – arrivals by air from the UK will take this test at the airport.

“Whatever the result of the two swab tests, those arriving in Italy from the UK must also report to their local health authorities on arrival and must self-isolate for 14 days.”

The Foreign Office added: “Everyone arriving in Italy must also call the COVID-19 helpline for the region you are travelling within 48 hours, to inform them of your visit.”

Travellers also need to download and complete a self-declaration form from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs before travel.

Life in Italy is currently very different from what tourists will be used to.

A nightly curfew is in place in all regions from 10pm to 5am.

“Public transport is operating at 50 percent capacity and its use is discouraged except for essential purposes,” said the FCDO.

It went on: “Eateries are open in yellow zones from 5am to 6pm. Only four people can sit together at a restaurant, bar or café. In all zones, a home delivery service is available until 10pm.

“It is not permitted to consume food and drink outdoors, between 6pm and 5am.”

Theatres, cinemas and concert venues are closed and “dance activity in nightclubs and open-air venues has been suspended.”

However, museums in yellow zones are open on weekdays.

Skiing in Italy won’t resume until at least the middle of February. “Ski stations will remain closed until 15 February,” stated the FCDO.

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