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Italy Green Pass - Your questions answered

May 23, 2022

What is the Italy Green Pass? Why do you need it and how can you get it?

italy green pass

A lot of rules have changed throughout 2021 and into 2022.

Before you visit Italy, find out what you need to do and what to bring with you so everything goes smoothly.

Italy Green Pass for tourists - what is it and how can you get it?

Ever since the EU came out with the idea of a Covid Green Pass last year, I've received a lot of questions about what it is, why you need it, and how to get one.

On this page, we'll cover:

You may also want to visit my other two related pages:

  • Can you travel to Rome (This is about whether you are allowed to visit Italy at all and under what circumstances.)
  • Coronavirus situation in Rome (This is about the situation in Rome as relates to Covid-19, and what's open, what's closed, and what restrictions you may find.)

BIG NEWS!!!

As of May 1 2022, the Italy Green Pass system is being removed altogether!

The information below therefore is for information only, there is no longer a widespread requirement to show proof of vaccination, recovery or negative test to access services/locations in Italy!

Be aware that proof IS still needed to enter Italy from abroad however.

What are the Italy Green Pass rules?

Italy originally decreed in July 2021 that you would need to provide proof of vaccination, or proof of a negative test, or proof of recovery from within the last 6 months to do certain things.

This was amended multiple times, extending the locations and actions where the Green Pass was required.

However, recently the Italian government has announced that the Italy Green Pass system will be massively reducing its scope.

FROM may 1, 2022:

These INDOOR activities will still require the Green Pass:

  • Visiting people in care homes or hospitals - FFP2 mask's (also known as N95/KN95 masks) will also still be required

That's it! And hopefully not a situation you will be in while visiting Italy!

So to confirm, you no longer need to show any Green Pass certification for the following:

  • All shops
  • Cinemas/theaters, sporting events, concerts etc
  • Public transport
  • Bars, restaurants, cafes
  • Gyms, swimming pools or other sports facilities
  • Museums - although some sites may still continue to ask for proof of vaccination/recovery/negative test, so always check when booking tickets.
  • Staying in accommodation such as hotels and B&B's
  • Banks and Post Offices
  • Hairdressers/barbers/beauty salons

If you do need to visit someone in hospital, if you're visiting from outside the EU, the Italian government has confirmed that in place of the Italy Green Pass, equivalent documents from the USA, Canada, Israel, Japan and the UK will be accepted, as the vaccines administered there are the same ones that were approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA).

If you live in a different country, you will still be eligible for the Italy Green Pass if you meet the following conditions:

  • You are fully vaccinated with one of the vaccines approved by the EMA (Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Novavax, Covishield, R-Pharm, Fiocruz)
  • If you are fully vaccinated with a different vaccine, you can still be eligible for the enhanced Green Pass access, if you can show proof of a recent negative test result from within the previous 48 hours for rapid antigen tests, and 72 hours for PCR tests, in addition to your vaccine certification.

In all cases, the following vaccination time limits apply:

  • If you have received two doses (or one for Johnson & Johnson), the date of last administration cannot be more than 6 months ago.
  • A certificate of recovery must be dated from within the last 6 months.
  • If you have received a booster dose, there is no expiration date.

So, this means you will need to have one of the following:

  • An official document showing proof of vaccination with one of the EMA approved vaccines, within the time frames set out above.
  • Proof of recovery from Covid-19 within the last 6 months, with an official doctor's certificate.
  • An official document showing proof of vaccination with a non-EMA approved vaccine, within the time frames set out above AND proof of recovery from Covid-19 within the last 6 months.

The only way around the 6 month expiration date for people who have not had a booster, is if you ALSO have proof of recovery from Covid in the last 6 months. Showing the proof of vaccination and the proof of recovery will be acceptable in this situation.

You will very likely need to show photographic ID to prove that you are the same person as named on the vaccination or recovery record. This can be any government-issued photo ID, such as a driving license. I would recommend leaving your passport in your hotel room or apartment, and carry a color photocopy/save a picture of it on your smartphone or tablet.

Children under the age of 12 do not need to show any documentation, although you may need to show proof of their age if challenged.

Note that the age limit of 12 for the Green Pass access differs from the lower age limit of 6 years old for child entry into Italy. So if you have an 8 year old child, you will need to arrange for pre-departure testing for them, but you will not have to have documents for them to access the Italy Green Pass.

*IMPORTANT*

The Italian Government has confirmed that in order for non-EU documents to be accepted, they need to be in at least one of Italian, English, Spanish, German or French. They can be in either digital or paper format, as long as the certificate has the following necessary information on it - although I have heard from people visiting Italy that a paper copy has been helpful to have.

The certificates of vaccination/recovery needs to state:

  • Your full name
  • Your date of birth
  • Details of the authority that issued the certificate (the name of the national health service, ministry of health or local health authority)
  • Name and batch number of vaccine
  • Date(s) the vaccine was administered
  • Or the date you first tested positive, along with the date you were confirmed as being recovered from Coronavirus.

You may also check on the official website of the Italian Ministry of Health.

I SPEAK FROM EXPERIENCE

I am navigating this situation as a legal permanent resident of Rome who has been vaccinated in the USA. I traveled back and forth between Italy and the USA a few times in 2021 and 2022, and I am continuing to visit museums and restaurants in Rome and other parts of Italy.

I have my own Italy Green Pass in place after having been vaccinated in the USA.

So it is in my own interest that I have the most accurate information possible.

The information about the Italy Green Pass on this page is curated from various official sources. While I am doing my best to provide you with the most recent and accurate information possible, I urge you to continue checking with various official sites such as those linked on this page.

I welcome any suggestions for corrections or improvements to this page.

Please use this form to contact me.

By reading this page, you understand that I am providing information with the intention of giving you the most accurate details possible, but that I and this website will not be held responsible for any errors or omissions.


What is the EU (European Union) Green Pass?

The EU created the concept of a "Green Pass" as a way to allow citizens and legal residents of EU member countries to travel more easily within the EU.

The certificate is in use across the EU, and also in non-EU countries Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, San Marino and Vatican City. The UK NHS app is also recognized by the EU system as a valid certificate, as long as the QR code in the app was created after October 29 2021.

This certificate is officially called the EU Digital COVID Certificate. It serves as proof that a person either:

  • is vaccinated against COVID-19
  • has received a negative test result
  • has recovered from COVID-19 within the previous 6 months

To get the certificate based on vaccination, a person must be fully vaccinated using one of the 4 EU approved vaccines (Moderna, Pfizer, Astrazeneca, or Johnson & Johnson.)

The certificate can also show a negative test result or doctor's certificate of recovery from Covid-19.

Each EU country, including Italy, issues their own digital Covid certificates to their respective citizens/residents, but the codes used within the national systems are readable across the different countries.

Of course, citizens/residents of these countries can already legally move freely among them. So this is not about freedom of movement per se.

The bottom line

The EU Digital Covid certificate is about being able to easily identify a person's Covid-19 status if necessary, such as if there are any restrictions in place in a given EU country or region.

The certificate needs to be used when traveling between different EU countries, to prove that you have complied with all relevant travel requirements.

What documents do you need to enter Italy?

Whether you are coming from an EU or Schengen country, or from outside the EU, the documents you need may vary.

As normal, you will need ID, usually your passport (if coming from outside the EU).

Covid-19 records - Green pass, Vaccination cards, etc

In most cases, you will need one or more of the following:

  • proof of vaccination (with an EU approved vaccine)
  • a negative test (antigen or PCR) taken within (usually) 48 (sometimes 24) hours of entry
  • or proof of recovery from Covid-19 within the last 6 months

Keep checking the rules

Individual countries set their own rules, and each country has rules that may be different when traveling to or from any given country. These rules can be changed with very little notice, and the airlines themselves also have slightly differing rules. So the best thing to do is to first check here for the country-specific rules:

EU Reopen official website

And then you should check and double check with the airline with which you will travel.

This is extremely important because airlines can have slightly differing rules so it's crucial to know what you need to have with you.

EU Passenger Locator Form

To enter Italy, you used to have to fill out a Digital Passenger Locator Form, which you should do in advance to avoid delays when you arrive, but this is no longer the case as of May 1.

If you are transiting through another EU country on your way to Italy, you will need to check their specific requirements in case another form is needed.


Does the Green Pass mean you do not have to quarantine when you enter Italy?

The Green Pass is not by itself a way to avoid quarantine, but may be used as a tool to validate if you are eligible for doing so. Italy has different quarantine requirements in place for different countries.

If traveling from an EU or Schengen area country, to avoid having to quarantine upon entering Italy, you will need the EU Digital COVID Certificate to evidence one of the following:

  • Proof of full vaccination (if you have not received your booster, your last dose must have been within the prior 9 months. There is no time limit if you have had your booster dose)
  • OR A certificate of recovery from Covid-19 from within the prior 6 months
  • OR a negative PCR or antigen test result from within 72 hours for PCR tests, or 48 hours for antigen tests before entering Italy

If traveling from any other country, to avoid having to quarantine upon entering Italy, you will need to evidence the following, with your country's equivalent documents:

  • Proof of full vaccination with an EU approved vaccine (if you have not received your booster, your last dose must have been within the prior 9 months. There is no time limit if you have had your booster dose)
  • Or, a certificate of recovery from Covid-19 from within the prior 6 months
  • Or, a negative PCR test result from within the 72 hours, or a negative antigen test from within the 48 hours, before entering Italy - you will NOT need to provide this in addition to your vaccination or recovery certificate.

In all cases, children under the age of 6 do not need to provide documentation, and do not have to take a test before traveling.

For more information, visit the official website of the Italian Ministry of Health.

Is the Italy Green Pass different from the EU Green Pass?

The Italy Green Pass is for Italian residents, as well as people who have been vaccinated or tested in Italy.

Every EU member issues their own Digital Covid Certificates to their citizens/residents, but they are all readable across the different countries who are part of this program, with each country having their own national version.

There is no Italy Green Pass for non-EU tourists.

Your vaccination record or negative test is your "green pass", however as of May 1, this is no longer needed in most cases.



How to get an Italy Green Pass if you are Italian or a legal Italian resident?

If you are an Italian citizen or legal resident of Italy and you have been vaccinated in Italy, you will receive an AUTHCODE on your mobile device.

This will allow you to get your Italy Green Pass.

For further details, visit the official page of the EU Digital Certificate in Italy.



How to get an Italy Green Pass if you are Italian or a legal Italian resident who was vaccinated outside of Italy?

While it's straightforward and simple to get your Italy Green Pass if you are an Italian citizen or legal resident, AND if you've been fully vaccinated in Italy, many Italian citizens/residents (including me) have been vaccinated outside of Italy and these vaccination records are not in the Italian system.

This means that these people, while fully eligible to get an Italy Green Pass (they legally reside in Italy and have been fully vaccinated), are not in the system automatically.

And while documents from abroad and from other EU countries are valid in Italy and will be accepted where necessary, many eligible people would prefer to have an Italy Green Pass.

For an Italian citizen/legal resident who was vaccinated outside Italy, here is the procedure to get your official Italy Green Pass:

  • Visit the health website of the region where you reside. Here are the links for all the Italian region health sites.
  • Use your SPID (here's how to get one if you don't have one yet) to enter the site and see your health records (fascicolo sanitario).
  • Once you can see your health record, upload a scan of your vaccination record (in my case, the CDC vaccination card). Ensure it was uploaded correctly. You should see at some point that the document was received and read.
  • Visit the Italian Ministry of Health website and follow the steps to get your AUTHCODE.

Here is the page on the Italian Ministry of Health where I found this information.

How to get an Italy Green Pass for tourists?

If you have your proof of vaccination or recovery from Covid-19 from when you entered Italy, this will be sufficient as the rules are the same for the Italy Green Pass and entry into Italy in the vast majority of cases.

If you have come to Italy using a negative test result, you may continue to take tests while here.

You will receive a code to access the Italy Green Pass system (which you will also need if you were vaccinated with a non-EMA approved vaccine), which will be valid for 48 hours for rapid antigen tests and 72 hours for PCR tests.

Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel

sistine chapelItaly green pass - tourists do not need one to visit the Sistine Chapel!

On the Vatican Museums website it still states that a basic Italy Green pass is required to enter the Vatican Museums, so proof of vaccination, recovery or negative test result is needed.

FFP2 face masks (also known as an N95/KN95 mask) are mandatory.

Colosseum

colosseum in romeTourists and residents alike are no longer required to show an Italy Green Pass to visit the Colosseum.

No Green Pass checks are being done anymore, and they do recommend that face masks are worn, although this is a recommendation, not a requirement anymore.

Are face masks still required?

At the time of this writing, face masks are required only in specific situations, including public transport and events.

Many locations are continuing to request that masks are worn however, so when visiting many sites and museums you may still be required to properly (covering the mouth and nose) wear face masks at all times.

vatican museums tour with face masksWhen visiting the Vatican Museums, you will need to keep a face mask on at all times.

Bear in mind that organizations have the right to set their own entry procedures, so always carry a mask with you just in case you are asked to put one on.


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