UK residents heading to Italy now need to prove they don’t have coronavirus - what it means for holidays

Friday, 9th October 2020, 10:50 am
Updated Friday, 9th October 2020, 11:52 am
UK residents heading to Italy now need to prove they don’t have coronavirus - what it means for holidays (Photo by TIZIANA FABI/AFP via Getty Images)

If you’re heading on holiday to Italy you will now need to take a coronavirus test 72 hours before departing and show proof of a negative result.

The country has introduced new entry requirements for anyone arriving from the UK, Spain, France, Greece, Croatia, Malta, the Netherlands, Belgium and the Czech Republic.

It's not the first destination to require travellers from the UK to take a test before travelling - Cyprus also asks visitors to show proof of recent testing before departing, with a confirmed negative result.

Travel advice

The Foreign Office has updated its travel advice for Italy, warning UK travellers that they should not use the NHS testing service to get a test so they can travel abroad.

At some airports, fast testing is available, and you will be able to get your results within an hour. At these airports, you usually won’t be allowed to leave until your results are available. Check the website of the airport you are flying to for more information on their process and operating times.

Alternatively, you can take a free Covid-19 test at the airport when you arrive in Italy. You will have to self-isolate at your hotel or accommodation until you get the results back from your test.

However, the Foreign Office warns, "If you test positive within Italy, you will be required to quarantine. The time spent in quarantine can vary greatly from a few days to several weeks. Travellers should be prepared for this eventuality."

Some airports in Italy do not have Covid-19 testing facilities. If you are flying to one of these airports (or if the facility is closed when you arrive) then you will be required to self-isolate and take a test at an alternative facility within 48 hours of your arrival instead.

You should call the Covid-19 helpline for the region you are in to arrange this. You can be fined if you do not comply with this requirement.

Entering the UK from Italy

Italy is currently exempt from the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) advice against all non-essential international travel, meaning that travellers do not need to self-isolate when returning from the country.

To stay up to date with the latest on entry requirements and restrictions check the FCDO Italy travel advice website section.