Italy relaxed its most stringent coronavirus restrictions on Sunday, allowing people to once again enter restaurants, theaters and gyms without presenting a health pass that shows full vaccination, recovery from Covid-19 or a recent negative test.
The health authorities also dropped requirements to wear masks in restaurants, bars and shops, but protective FFP2 masks — roughly comparable to N95 masks in the United States — remained mandatory in crowded indoor venues like sports arenas and cinemas, and on public transportation.
FFP2 masks and health passes are still required to enter hospitals and nursing homes. Children over the age of 6 will still have to wear masks in school because the virus is now largely circulating among children, though the masks need not be the highly protective type. And Italy still requires people 50 or older to show proof of vaccination to enter their workplaces.
Dr. Giovanni Rezza, who is in charge of prevention at Italy’s Health Ministry, told reporters at a news conference last week that virus circulation in the country was “high,” and he advised people to wear masks indoors or in crowded places where there is a risk of contagion, even if masks are no longer required there.
Travelers to Italy will still need to show proof of vaccination, recovery or a recent negative test to enter the country, but airline passengers bound for Italy will no longer have to fill out a European Union passenger locator form before checking in at the airport.