Published: 01/03/2021 By The Abode Team
Under Italy's current emergency decree, a national tiered framework means some Covid-19 rules differ based on where you are in Italy.
Regions are divided into red, orange and yellow zones, under a system based on how severe the coronavirus situation is locally. A fourth tier has also now been added for regions with a lower contagion rate: white. People in the highest-risk red zones are told to stay within their town, and are only allowed to leave for work, study, health or other urgent reasons. The regional rules first came into effect on November 6th, and the classification now changes weekly on Sundays based on the latest health data.
On Saturday February 27th Italy's health minister signed the latest ordinance moving three more regions into the orange zone and two into the red zone, as well as declaring Italy's first white zone. The government also stated that the changes will now come into effect on Mondays, rather than Sundays as has been the case previously. This means that from Monday, March 1st, Italy's regions are classified as follows:
Yellow zones: Calabria, Friuli Venezia Giulia, Lazio, Puglia, Sardinia, Sicily, Valle d'Aosta, Veneto
Orange zones: Lombardy, Marche, Piedmont, Abruzzo, Campania, Emilia Romagna, Liguria, Tuscany, autonomous province of Bolzano, autonomous province of Trento, Umbria.
Red zones: Basilicata, Molise. Local lockdowns are in place in some towns and provinces.
White zones: Sardinia.
Note that in addition to the regional classifications, many towns and provinces have declared their own additional restrictions. Here is a reminder of the the rules.
Regions classified under this band are exempt from most restrictions in other zones, including the 10pm curfew and 6pm closing time for bars and restaurants. However, the final set of rules in place in each region varies depending on the local authority. In Sardinia's case, the regional governor signed an ordinance on Sunday stating that the evening curfew has been moved back to 11.30pm, and that restaurants must close at 11pm instead of 6pm. Bars must close at 9pm. Health Minister Roberto Speranza stressed that those living in white zones would need to continue "respecting all social distancing measures".
Residents can circulate freely in their own region, including between towns, but may not leave the region except for work, health, emergencies or other essential reasons. A nightly curfew applies from 10pm to 5am; you should only leave the house during these hours for essential reasons. Police can stop you and ask you to fill in a self-declaration form. Bars, cafes, restaurants and all other food businesses are open and can serve customers on the premises until 6pm. No more than four customers may share a table. All shops are open, though malls and outlet centres must close at weekends. Museums can open on weekdays only. Cinemas, theatres, concert venues, bingo halls and casinos remain closed. Schools can conduct up to 75 percent of lessons in person, with the rest taking place remotely.
All the national rules will apply, plus:
Travel restrictions - People in orange zones will not be allowed to travel from one municipality to another, unless for essential reasons, by either public or private transport. You can enter or leave an orange or red zone only for reasons of work, study, health or emergency, which must be justified using a self-certification form.
Business closures - Bars, cafes, restaurants, pastry shops and other food businesses must close to the public. Home delivery is still allowed, and takeaway is permitted until curfew at 10pm. Shops including hairdressers and bookshops will remain open.
All the national and orange zone rules apply, plus:
Travel restrictions - In addition to not being allowed to travel from one municipality to another, people in red zones are not allowed to move around within their own area unless for essential reasons, by either public or private transport. If you need to leave your home for work, study, health or emergency reasons these must be justified using a self-certification form. You can only enter or leave an orange or red zone for the same urgent reasons.
Business closures - In addition to bars, cafes, restaurants, pastry shops and other catering businesses being closed to the public, as in orange zones, shops are to be closed except for those deemed essential, which include supermarkets and other food shops, tabacchi, bookshops and stationary shops. Hairdressers and beauticians can also remain open.
No sports - All sports activities are to be suspended but “motor activity” (solo exercise such as running or walking) is allowed.
Regional and city authorities may also put their own additional measures in place in response to the situation locally.
How are the rules decided?
Italy's Health Ministry decides which region is in which zone based on the advice of its Technical Scientific Committee (CTS), effectively bypassing regional authorities - many of which have said they were against a local lockdown or other tough measures. The CTS takes 21 indicators into account, including each region's Rt number (which shows the transmission rate) as well as factors like hospital bed capacity and whether local health authorities are able to successfully trace the source of outbreaks.