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When will Italy recognise UK vaccinations via the NHS app?

After Italy announced it will extend its 'green pass' to make the certificate mandatory to visit museums, attend concerts or dine at a restaurant indoors, many readers vaccinated in the UK have contacted The Local to ask when the NHS app will be recognised in Italy. Here's what we know so far.

When will Italy recognise UK vaccinations via the NHS app?
(Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS / AFP)

**Note: This article is no longer being updated. Please see the latest news here.**

Italy’s Covid health pass will cover most venues and cultural sites in the country when the new rules come into effect on August 6th.

From that date, you’ll need to show a ‘green pass‘ to access many places that typically attract tourists, such as museums, galleries, theatres, cinemas, sports stadiums, theme parks, indoor swimming pools, spas, and indoor seating areas at bars and restaurants.

READ ALSO: Italy makes Covid ‘green pass’ mandatory for restaurants, gyms, cinemas and more 

The certificazione verde is available to anyone who has been vaccinated in Italy, including those who have only had the first of two doses. 

People who have recovered from Covid-19 in the past six months or who tested negative for the coronavirus within the previous 48 hours can also claim it.

So if you were vaccinated in the UK, Italy’s Covid health pass currently doesn’t recognise your shots.

(Photo by Filippo MONTEFORTE / AFP)

When will this change?

Since France begun to independently recognise proof of vaccination in the UK, people wanting to travel to Italy for tourism, to make long-postponed trips to family or to attend weddings have been asking when Italy will follow suit.

France is allowing UK visitors who were vaccinated to upload their NHS certificates to the French health pass app, TousAntiCovid.

This recognition isn’t mutual, but the UK government is shortly expected to make an announcement on EU-administered vaccinations being accepted for entry into the UK.

Whether or not more countries might start recognising each others’ health passports may depend on whether apps are compatible with each other, as much as on international agreements.

EXPLAINED: When, where and why will you need a Covid health passport in Italy?

If you were vaccinated somewhere else than the UK, click here to see how it affects you when visiting Italy.

Although Italy and the UK have not yet made an announcement on when the NHS Covid pass will be recognised in Italy, one is due shortly.

The director of prevention at the Ministry of Health, Giovanni Rezza, told reporters at a press conference, “There is no reason for this situation to persist.”

Being unable to access the ‘green pass’ if you were vaccinated in the UK “is being resolved”, he confirmed.

Referring to Italians living in the UK who want to return home for summer visits, the Italian Embassy in London shared Rezza’s announcement on social media.

“‘The problem of the green pass for Italians who have had a vaccination cycle in Great Britain, where two vaccines were given like we have done [in Italy], is being resolved’. This was said by Giovanni Rezza, director of prevention at the Ministry of Health,” the tweet read.

Rezza pointed out that vaccines administered in the UK are recognised by the European Medicines Agency and so should be accepted in Italy.

Travellers continue to wait for a confirmed date on when this will come into force, following Rezza’s comments last week that a decision would arrive within a day or two.

Reader question: Can I use a foreign vaccination certificate to access Italy’s ‘green pass’?

What can I do until then?

If you’re travelling to Italy from the UK, you’ll need to follow the current travel restrictions, which include a 5-day quarantine and double-testing requirements.

However, these are due to expire at the end of the month and are presently under review.

Until then, once you’re in Italy and have completed quarantine, there’s one sure way to obtain Italy’s ‘green pass’ – by getting a coronavirus test in Italy. Find out how to get tested in Italy here, and learn how to download the green pass using your test number here.

What about returning to the UK?

Anyone vaccinated under the NHS can currently return home to the UK after a trip abroad without facing a quarantine period – though people who were vaccinated in Italy would still face quarantine in the UK under current ‘amber’ list rules.

An announcement from the UK government is expected on Wednesday, which may drop quarantine for vaccinated EU arrivals as well, however.

The Local will continue to follow the travel restrictions closely. Please check our homepage or travel news section for the most recent reports on any changes to the rules.

For more information about the current coronavirus-related restrictions on travel to Italy please see the Foreign Ministry’s website (in English).

Member comments

  1. We have the Euro Pass, must we now get an Italian Green Pass too. Also, we don’t use Twitter so no scanning of the green pass. Can we scan the Euro pass to get the app?

    1. If you have a EU Green Pass, that is all you need. Italy’s C19 app will authenticate and pass any issued Green Pass from anywhere in the EU.

      France’s TousantiCovid app allows non French Covid passes to be added, for some countries… I believe the NHS is one of them. Once in the French app, it will be recognized by the Italian authenticator app.

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VENICE

EXPLAINED: How will the tourist-control system work in Venice?

Venice is introducing a new system to discourage day-trippers in hopes of curbing problems with overtourism in the popular hotspot. Here is what you need to know.

EXPLAINED: How will the tourist-control system work in Venice?

After years of discussing a possible “tourist tax”, the city of Venice has confirmed it will make day-trippers pay from €3 to €10 for access to the city centre starting on January 16th.

Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro said the goal of the new tourism fee is to discourage day tourism at certain times of the year and encourage overnight tourism. Day-trippers will have to pay a fee, but those who stay overnight continue only to have to pay the city tax of €2 to €5, according to a government press release.

The Commission and the City Council will now examine the regulatory text for the final green light scheduled for the summer.

“We are the first in the world to introduce this system, and we are aware that not everything will work well from the beginning, but we will be ready to improve in the course of work. We want to guarantee the tourist the best quality of the visit and make sure that the city is able to give visitors all the services they need”, said Tourism Secretary Simone Venturini.

READ ALSO: After flooding and coronavirus, is it time Venice stopped relying on tourism?

How much will I have to pay?

The contributo di acesso, or access contribution, will cost from €3 to €10, depending on factors such as tourism numbers for the day and season.

The city will determine a certain threshold of tourists, after which people will be required to pay higher sums. Travellers are encouraged to book in advance to avoid price increases.

Does the payment have to be made in advance?

The government said that nobody would be denied entry to Venice, meaning a pre-registration is not necessary. However, the mayor said that those who book their visit in advance would be “rewarded”. The reward will likely discount the fee.

How will the system work? Where do I pay?

According to the City of Venice, the payment is an alternative to the city tax. It will be required from every person that goes to the old city centre of Venice, as well as other major tourist destinations and islands in the region.

READ ALSO: 16 surprising facts about Venice to mark 16 centuries of the lagoon city

A single payment guarantees access to the old town and the smaller islands.

Tourists will be able to pay through an online and “multilingual” platform where they will receive a QR code to present in case of controls. Tickets should also be available to buy in connection with public transport – so if you are arriving by train, it will be possible to buy the train ticket and the entry pass together.

Who is excluded or exempt from the payment?

There are several exceptions to the payment, according to the website. Among them are residents from the Comune di Venezia, those who work or study there, and those who own homes in the city.

Additionally, exceptions include those born in the Comune di Venezia, children under six years of age, people with disabilities and their accompanying person, public workers, volunteers, people visiting family members, prisoners, or attending funerals, and many others.

Residents of the Veneto region “up to the thresholds that will be set by a specific Council resolution” are also exempt.

Those who stay overnight and, therefore, already pay the city tax through their hotel or short-term rental booking are also exempt from the fee.

The city of Murano, in the metropolitan region of Venice (Photo by Claudio Schwarz on Unsplash)

What about people arriving on cruises?

Venice is a very popular stop for cruise ships and people visiting the city on a cruise tour will also have to pay the fee as they disembark in the old town. However, the City of Venice said they might determine a lump-sum measure in agreement with the relevant carriers.

READ ALSO: OPINION: Why more of Italy’s top destinations must limit tourist numbers

Which smaller islands are included?

Only one ticket and payment is required for those travelling to multiple islands, including Venice. The islands that are part of the group are:

  • Lido di Venezia
  • Pellestrina
  • Murano
  • Burano
  • Torcello
  • Sant’Erasmo
  • Mazzorbo
  • Mazzorbetto
  • Vignole
  • S. Andrea
  • La certosa
  • S. Servolo
  • S. Clemente
  • Poveglia

What if I simply don’t pay?

If you fail to produce proof of payment or that you are exempt from the fee, the sanction is from €50 to €300. The fine is the same in the case of people making false statements trying to obtain exemptions or reductions.

Additionally, visitors who don’t pay in advance will have to pay the full €10 fee.

For more info click here.

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