Coronavirus: Italy to reopen borders to EU tourists ‘without 14-day quarantine’ from June 3
• Government to allow people to move freely around country for first time since March
EU tourists will be able to travel to Italy without a mandatory 14-day quarantine from 3 June as part of measures to lift the country’s strict coronavirus lockdown, Italian media has reported.
The move, which will also apply to countries in the Schengen Area, came as the Italian government announced plans to ease travel restrictions to allow people to move freely inside the country from the same day.
The newspaper la Repubblica has reported those who enter the country from EU states will not be forced to quarantine in isolation for 14 days to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
In a bid to slow its epidemic, Italy was the first European country to impose strict nationwide restrictions in March and only allowed a slight relaxation of the rules on 4 May, when it allowed factories and parks to reopen.
Some regions had called for a swifter rollback of restrictions but Giuseppe Conte, Italy’s prime minister, has insisted on a gradual return to normal due to fears of a second wave of infections.
More than 31,600 Italians have died from Covid-19 since February, giving Italy one of the worst death tolls from the pandemic in the world – behind only the US and the UK.
On 18 May, shops are due to reopen and movement within individual regions will be allowed, meaning people will be able to visit their friends.
The further lifting of travel restrictions will not come into effect until after Italy’s 2 June Republic Day to prevent any mass travel over the long holiday weekend.
From 3 June, travel will only be restricted if an area is considered to be at high risk for coronavirus infections.
Regions will also be allowed to reactivate all sectors of the economy, so long as strict safety protocols and social distancing measures are followed.
Restaurants will be able to reopen so long as customers are kept at a distance of one metre from each other, with mandatory face masks for both staff and customers when they are not sitting at tables.