Rome Coronavirus. The Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte issued a decree on March 9, 2020, by which he declared the entire Italian territory a “red zone” until April 3rd. In an interview with the Corriere della Sera on March 18, he said that the measures “can only be extended” without setting a new date. Find out what this means for you if you are in Rome or planning a stay in Rome.
After the interview with the Prime Minister, we can assume that the measures will last at least after Easter or until the beginning of May. In connection with the travel restrictions in other countries, your Easter holiday in Rome must unfortunately be canceled this year.
Basically, people should keep a minimum distance of 1 meter from each other. To avoid the gathering of people, all museums, theaters and exhibitions, but also schools, kindergartens and universities, are closed until April 3rd. Public events are canceled until April 3, 2020.
Basically, the slogan of the Prime Minister, #iorestoacasa, translates to “I stay at home”. People should only leave the house when it is necessary. This includes going to work, doing the necessary shopping, visiting relatives in need of help, seeing a doctor or driving home. According to this interpretation, visiting a friend is not a necessary activity.
Only grocery stores, tobacco shops and pharmacies are open between 8:30 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., on Sundays and public holidays until 3:00 p.m. As an alternative, you can choose a hotel that offers a restaurant only for its own guests with flexible opening times. Shopping centers and markets are closed on weekends.
Documentation if moving
Of course, you need a valid ID document such as an identity card or passport. You should also have a completed form with you, under the threat of punishment, to declare that you have not given false information about your change of location being a necessity. Declaration on the reason of movement Coronavirus Rome 26.03.2020
You enter your name, date and place of birth, place of residence, type and number of the ID card and telephone number and then tick the reason for your change of location: □ proven professional necessity □ situation of a necessity – here also the shopping of food etc. □ health reasons □ return to your own home.
Below you can enter further details, such as place of work, place of residence, other special motives such as a doctor’s appointment, etc. There are currently no special provisions for tourism.
Of course, you should provide adequate health insurance during this time. It is sufficient for citizens of the European Union to have their health insurance EHIC card with them.
In case of suspected infection in Rome COVID-19
If you suspect that you have been infected with the SARS-Cov-2 coronavirus – the disease caused is called COVID-19 Corona virus desease 2019 – you should not leave the house so as not to infect other people. In Rome call a family doctor or call 800 11 88 00, the phone numbers of other regions in Italy can be found on the website of the Ministry of Health.
Arrival and departure
In Italy the arrival and departure is currently only possible to a very limited extent. There are very few flights. You must also obtain information on this from the authorities in your country of origin or destination. There are temperature scanners in airports and train stations. Due to the reduced number of flights, Ciampino Airport closes on March 14th, Terminal 1 of Fiumicino Airport closes on March 17th and all passengers are handled at Terminal 3.
What to do in Rome
Unfortunately, you can currently only see museums and sights from the outside. St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums are also closed. Basically, you should only leave the house if necessary and visiting sights is not one of them. In our section 3 days in Rome you will find many suggestions for walks and activities in Rome.
Public transportation in Rome keeps functioning until 9 p.m. and there are no night services. Hop on hop off Buses are suspended until 3 april.
Always keep a distance of at least one meter between yourself and others in public spaces, bars, restaurants and shops. Businesses must ensure that there are not too many people in the business so that the distance can be maintained.
Vatican and catacombs closure due to corona virus
The Vatican has also followed the rules of the Italian government. St. Peter’s Square, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican Museums and the Necropolis are closed until April 3rd. The catacombs remain closed throughout Italy. Access to the Vatican pharmacy remains open. Info on Vatican News
The Pope’s Angelus prayer and audiences are not public until April 12 and are only broadcast on television and on the Internet. The Easter week celebrations are also not public. Papal audience live
Unfortunately, due to the special situation in Rome, all bars and restaurants are closed. Ask your hotel whether a bar or restaurant is open for house guests. If you have an apartment, you can take care of yourself. Many supermarkets also offer takeaway snacks, pizza and fried foods. They close at 6:30 p.m., on Sunday at 3:00 p.m. You can also have food delivered with Just eat, deliveroo or glovo. For further information read our category Food in Rome
Night life in times of the corona virus in Rome
In principle, night life is currently canceled in Rome. In addition to the closure of the bars and restaurants, there is a general ban on having drinks from glass bottles in public in the evening. All government action is aimed at avoiding crowds.
What happens after April 3rd?
April 3 is the Friday before Palm Sunday. Easter is April 12th. The Italian government’s expectation is that due to the strict measures, the epidemic can be contained to such an extent that normal life can be resumed. From April 4th, all sights should be open again.
However, there may then no longer be a box office to avoid the known queues. The tickets could then only be ordered online, as was already the case for the Milan Cathedral in February. You can find tickets for all sights on our website.
Motivation of the protective measures against the corona virus in Rome
In February there was an exponential increase in corona infections in northern Italy. One reason that the virus was able to spread so much was that the symptoms of the coronavirus were similar to the symptoms of other colds and the infection was therefore recognized too late. On March 9, the Prime Minister therefore issued a decree restricting northern Italy. However, information about the decree leaked ahead of time. Many northern Italians then fled to other parts of the country to anticipate possible travel restrictions. The decree was therefore extended to cover the entire country on March 10.
Italians are naturally sociable. Hugs and kisses are good manners. Italians also love a cozy meal in large groups, the quick coffee in the morning and the extensive aperitif in the early evening. The Italian government is now trying to implement a series of measures to increase the distance between people and thereby prevent the further spread of the coronavirus.