If you’ve been dreaming of visiting Italy this summer, you can finally start making plans. Last Friday, Italy’s foreign minister announced that the country is ready to welcome Canadian and American tourists again, with two caveats: one, they quarantine for 10-days upon arrival – or two, as long as they arrive on a Covid-tested flight.
Following the news, Delta and American Airlines announced Covid-tested flights from various cities in the United States, dubbing them ‘quarantine-free’ flights, as arriving on one allows passengers to skip the 10-day quarantine in Italy.
Italy Now Open for Tourism
The Italian government has been hinting at relaxing restrictions from mid-May for travelers wanting to visit. On Friday, the country’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Luigi Di Maio, officially made the announcement in a Facebook post.
A few of the updates are as follows:
Starting May 16, there will no longer be a quarantine for travelers from EU countries, the Schengen Area, the United Kingdom, and Israel who have a negative PCR or antigen test taken within 48 hours before arrival.
Travelers from the USA, Canada, Japan, and the United Arab Emirates coming on specific Covid-tested flights are also allowed to visit per the new decree, which is in effect until June 30th, 2021.
Which Airlines Are Offering Covid-tested Flights?
Following the announcement from the government lifting entry restrictions, Delta announced they will be the first airline to offer COVID-tested flights between the U.S. and Italy effective May 16.
“Delta was the first U.S. airline to launch quarantine-free service to Italy, and our COVID-tested flights have proved a viable means to restart international travel safely,” said Alain Bellemare, Delta’s E.V.P and President – International.
“It is encouraging that the Italian government has taken this step forward to reopen the country to leisure travelers from the U.S. on our dedicated protocol flights and further supporting economic recovery from the global pandemic.”
Delta is offering several choices of nonstop COVID-tested services to Italy:
- Daily service between New York (JFK) and Milan (MXP)
- Three-times-a-week from New York to Rome (FCO), increasing to daily July 1
- Five-times-a-week between Atlanta and Rome, increasing to daily May 26
Additionally, Delta will be launching three more nonstop routes to Italy this summer, including New York to Venice beginning July 2, and Atlanta to Venice, and Boston to Rome beginning Aug. 5.
Italy is the fourth European destination Delta will offer to travelers this summer, following Iceland, Greece, and a brand-new service to Dubrovnik, Croatia.
American Airlines Now Offering Quarantine-Free Flights To Italy
Starting May 16th, American Airlines is offering customers quarantine-free flights from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) to Milan (MXP) and from JFK to Rome (FCO).
American currently offers daily flights between New York and Milan and a three-times-weekly service to Rome. The company is also expected to announce quarantine-free flights from Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) to Rome in the coming days.
What Is Required To Visit Italy on Covid-tested Flights?
To fly on COVID-tested flights from the U.S. to Italy, all travelers must complete a series of mandatory testing both before departure and on arrival. This is regardless of vaccination status.
Prior to travel, customers will need to provide proof of the required negative COVID-19 test taken up to 72 hours before departure. Travelers will also be required to take a rapid test at the airport just before boarding, and then a second rapid test on arrival in Italy.
If all three tests come back negative, travelers can enjoy a quarantine-free vacation to Italy.
“This is how we open to safe tourism from all G7 states after over a year,” Di Maio said. “So far, with the covid-free flights, you couldn’t come to Italy for tourism from the extra EU countries. Now let’s reopen to this opportunity, which allows safe travels without quarantine… With hard work, we work to bring Italy out of crisis and save the tourist season.”
Can Canadians Take These ‘Covid-Free’ Flights From The USA to Italy?
On May 15, Italy updated their border rules to add both the USA and Canada to the ‘D’ country list, meaning tourists from either country can enter for leisure/tourism. They also stated they would accept Covid-free flights from the USA, Canada, UAE and Japan. Only the USA has launched such flights as of yet, which has Canadians wondering if they can take those flights too.
Delta’s site says: “All customers, including leisure travelers, eligible to enter Italy can travel on Delta’s Covid-Tested flights”. Since Canadians are now listed as a ‘D’ list country, the same status given to the U.S., and have the same eligibility rights to enter Italy as the U.S., it seems as if Canadians will be permitted to use these flights.
Any Canadian looking to fly with Delta or American Airlines on these specific flights should contact them before booking to ensure their eligibility.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com