Updated May 2021, will continue to update with changing regulations
Well, that title might be a bit misleading, none of us are really in the post-CoVid phase. Restrictions are back easing again for our second year. And come Mid May/June, US and UK citizens will be allowed back to Italy and be able to skip quarantine. However, there is still a little hesitation out and about and it is important to keep certain rules in mind for your trip to Italy in post COVID times.
Who can start planning a trip to Italy?
US and UK citizens will soon be able to enter Italy IF they can show proof of vaccination, show that they have been cured of COvid in the last 6 months, or have a negative swab test within 48 hours of entering Italy. Quarantine will not be required for US, UK, EU, and Israeli travelers.
However you will want to know current rules
Current Covid Restrictions
Italy is still in a state of emergency, and we are still following the Yellow, Orange, and Red zones. Throughout Italy, we have a curfew. Here are some additional rules that may affect your trip, these are subject to change and are on track to be lifted come June.
In Yellow Zones-
- Bars and Restaurants are open but can only serve outdoors
- Gyms are open!
- Museums are open, masks required
- Malls are closed on weekends
In Orange & Red Zones
- Bars and Restaurants are closed, you can only have take out
- Only individual sports allowed, like running or biking outside
- Museums are closed
- You may have to have a certification to cross town and region lines
For more information keep an eye on the changing regions here.
If you need to get tested while in Italy, you can check out this great directory for Covid tests: http://www.faiuntestevai.it/en
ItalY in the Times of COvid: Tips for your Trip
Keep a mask handy
At the moment, no matter what is open, you will need to have a mask with you at all times, as every indoor shop requires you to wear one. At restaurants, you are allowed to take it off when you sit, and outdoors if you are distant from others you are allowed to lower or take it off.
Leave room in your budget
Prices of experiences and restaurants are a bit scattered, so it is hard to discuss budgets for your trip to Italy, be ready to pay possibly a little more than in the past. Leave some wiggle room in your budget, and though tipping is still not common, it could be greatly appreciated when eating out.
Book an experience with a local
Italy’s economy was is heavily based on tourism and it really took a hit these last few months. The best way you can help, and gain an authentic view of Italy. is by booking experience with a local.
Be it a cooking class, tour or tasting, Italy is filled with unique experiences that will add a whole other layer to your trip to Italy. When possible, try to book directly, rather than through Airbnb Experiences or another third-party site. These websites take a percentage from hosts, though for the next few months AirBNB is waiving their commission.
If you are still trying to budget your trip, search for a free walking tour. They are normally available in all major cities. They are offered for free, with the idea that you can then tip your guide whatever you can afford.
If you are heading to Venice, check out: Touring Different.
Stay, Shop, Eat Small
No matter what the situation is in Italy, this is a top rule to follow on your trip to Italy. The most authentic Italy is found in the small. The small streets hold the most beautiful, the small restaurants always have the tastiest dishes, and the small shops have the most talented artisans.
But now more than ever, it’s important to help these small store owners and restaurants to get back on their feet after the lockdown has put them in a difficult position.
Be it for dinner, or the beach, reserving a spot is necessary all around the country. Do a little research beforehand to choose a restaurant and call a day in advance. For the beach (from June onward), you can reserve most spots on this website: https://www.bookyourbeach.net/
Slow Down, and Enjoy.
Things have always had a slow pace in Italy, but now with quite a few lines and social distancing measures, things are even slower. But, hey, that is part of the beauty of Italy, just taking things slow and enjoying the experience. My favorite pastime is and has always been an aperitivo outside just watching people in the piazza. This is one thing that has not changed one bit after the pandemic.
Remember when planning a trip to Italy in COVID times to keep an eye on any local regulations, your country’s own travel restrictions, and check-in with your Embassy for any other information.