Last updated: 19 Sep 2021

Italy

About

The Italian welcome is as warm and traditional as a glass of fine wine and you will find the Italians to be the ultimate hosts throughout your stay.

Italy is one of the most popular vacation countries in Europe as all seasons are good for a visit. It's an international playground in summer with many famous resorts inland and at the water's edge. In winter, the Italian Alps are unequalled for scenery and skiing conditions. And in spring and autumn, the visitor can take in all that Italy has to offer, at a more leisurely pace.

Go shopping in Milan (Milano), Italy's most sophisticated city. Do not miss the chance to wear an elaborate costume and mask at the Venice Carnival. Be fascinated by Rome's historical sites - the Colosseum. Enter the Vatican City an independent sovereign state best known for the magnificent St Peter's Basilica. Among the principal features of the Vatican Palace (the Pope's residence) are the Sistine Chapel and the Vatican Museum.

In Milan (Milano), appreciate Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece, The Last Supper, which may be viewed at the convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie.
Capital:  Rome (ROM)
Currency:  Euro (EUR)
Language:  Italian (dialects vary across regions). Albanian, Slovenia and Greek are spoken in certain regions. English, French and German may be spoken in tourist areas. 
Dialling code from SA:  + 39
Time Zones: UTC / GMT +1 (1 hour behind South Africa)
Daylight Savings Time: From last Sunday in March to last Sunday in October: UTC / GMT +2 (same time as South Africa)
Public Holidays 2021: 

Jan 1, 6; Apr 5, 25; May 1; Jun 2; Aug 15; Nov 1; Dec 8, 25, 26

Side of the Road: Right
Best Time to Go: April - June and mid-September – October. From July – September there are many holiday makers. In August, many Italians also go on holiday, making the holiday regions very busy, but the urban areas may be quieter during this month. 
Best for: Art and Architecture, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Wine
Plugs: 230 volts AC, 50Hz. Plugs either have two round pins or three pins in a row
Drinking Water: Mains water in hotels and towns is safe to drink, including fountains unless there is a sign to indicate otherwise. 
Health: There are adequate and well-equipped medical facilities, however visitors are required to pay for these services. Comprehensive health insurance is recommended. If you require any medication on your travels it is best to bring it with you, in the original packaging, with a signed and dated letter from your doctor detailing exactly what it is and why you need it.
Customs: Normal social courtesies. Dress is casual, but smart as clothing and appearance are important to Italians. Beachwear should be confined to the beach. Conservative clothing should be worn when visiting religious buildings and rural communities. When visiting churches, you should not bring food inside or drink from your water bottle, and cell phones should be switched off. Public drunkenness is not appreciated. “Ciao” is only used among friends, if greeting strangers use the more formal greetings such as “buonasera.” 
Local Offences / Laws: A service fee may be charged for using credit / debit cards in restaurants. If visiting Vatican City, check for local restrictions on use of debit/credit cards and ATM withdrawals, as they have been subject to suspension. Italy has a Charter of Rights for Tourists (click here: http://www.italia.it/en/useful-info/rights-for-tourists.html). Strikes by transport workers happen regularly. Avoid protests. 
Duty Free: Italy is within the European Union. If you are travelling from the UK, you are entitled to buy fragrance, skincare, cosmetics, champagne, wine, selected spirits, fashion accessories, gifts and souvenirs - all at tax-free equivalent prices.

If you are travelling from within the EU, there is no limit on the amount or value of goods you may import, providing your goods are for personal consumption. Goods imported for commercial purposes are subject to duty and the following guideline amounts are in place to determine whether this is the case:
• 800 cigarettes or 400 cigarillos or 200 cigars or 1kg of tobacco.
• 10L of spirits over 22% volume, 20L of alcoholic beverages less than 22% volume, 90L of wine (no more than 60L of sparkling wine) and 110L of beer.

If you are arriving from a non-EU country, the following goods may be imported into Italy by persons over 17 years of age without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco.
• 4L of wine and 16L of beer and 1L of spirits over 22% volume or 2L of alcoholic beverages less than 22% volume.
• Other goods up to the value of €430 for air and sea travellers and €300 for other travellers (reduced to €150 for children under 15).
Prohibited Imports: Meat and milk and any derivative products from most non-EU countries, protected animal and plant species, unlicensed firearms and weapons, and counterfeit goods.
Prohibited Exports: Cultural artefacts which are more than 50 years old must be accompanied by an export licence.

Travel Alerts

Last updated: 13/09/2021

Italy is open for travel from the EU and some third countries for essential reasons, including students, businesspersons and relatives of Italian nationals.

Mask requirements

  • Passengers aged 7 years or older need to wear a surgical face mask during their entire trip.

Entry restrictions

  • Passengers are not permitted to enter Italy.
  • This does not apply to:
    • Nationals and residents of Italy,
    • Nationals and residents of the European Union, Schengen Area member states, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino or Vatican City State and their family members;
    • Passengers travelling from the European Union or the Schengen Area member states, Andorra, Armenia, Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Georgia, Japan, Korea (South), Kosovo, Kuwait, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, New Zealand, Oman, Panama, Peru, Republic of North Macedonia, Romania, Rwanda, San Marino, Serbia, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay,
    • Passengers in transit,
    • Passengers holding valid long-stay visas or residence permits for the Schengen Area,
    • Passengers travelling for work, study, health, emergency or humanitarian reasons,
    • Diplomats and staff of international organisations,
    • Passengers travelling to meet their European Union, Schengen or British national partner legally resident in Italy,
    • Participants of sports competitions (athletes, technicians, judges and race officials), provided holding a negative molecular or antigenic test obtained within 48 hours prior to arrival.        
  • Passengers travelling from or who have been in India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka in the past 14 days are not permitted to enter Italy.
  • This does not apply to the following passengers, provided they are holding a negative Covid-19 PCR or antigen test result obtained within 48 hours prior to arrival. They will be subject to Covid-19 testing on arrival and must quarantine for 10 days on arrival with further testing at the end of their quarantine:
    • Nationals of Italy enrolled in the Register of Italians Residing Abroad (AIRE);
    • Passengers entering for study purposes;
    • Passengers intending to travel to their place of residence which was established prior to 28 August 2021;
    • Passengers intending to travel to the home of their minor children, spouse or Civil Union partner;
    • Passengers authorised by the Italian Ministry of Health;
    • Crew members;
    • Seafarers; or
    • Passengers arriving in Bologna Guglielmo Marconi Airport (BLQ) from 07:00 to 18:30 Italian local time.
  • Passengers who have visited Brazil in the past 14 days, including for transit, are not permitted to enter Italy.
  • This does not apply to the following passengers, provided they are holding a negative Covid-19 PCR or antigen test result obtained within 48 hours prior to arrival:
    • Passengers with official residence status in Italy before or since 13th February 2021;
    • Passengers travelling to join their children aged 18 years and younger;
    • Passengers entering for study purposes;
    • Officials and agents of the European Union or other diplomats or representatives of international organisations including the military and police;
    • Passengers who hold an authorisation issued by the Ministry of Health 7 days prior to travelling.

Form requirements

  • Passengers must complete the Digital Passenger Locator Form (dPLF) here prior to travelling to Italy. The dPLF is accepted in digital format only.
  • Passengers must complete the "Self-Certification Form" here prior to travelling to Italy. This does not apply to nationals of the European Union member states.
  • Passengers arriving in Emilia Romagna are required to register online here
  • Passengers travelling to Puglia must complete the "Self-report Form" here prior to arrival. Passengers who are required to undergo a molecular or antigenic test within 48 hours after arriving in Italy may book their test through this link as well.
  • Passengers travelling to Tuscany must complete the "Self-report Form" here prior to arrival. Passengers who are required to undergo a molecular or antigenic test within 48 hours after arriving in Italy may book their test through this link as well. 

Test requirements

    • Passengers who have been in Albania, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, Jordan, Korea (South), Kosovo, Lebanon, Macao, Moldova, Montenegro, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Taiwan, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, or the United States in the past 14 days must either hold a negative Covid-19 molecular or antigenic test result not older than 48 hours prior to arrival; or a Covid Certificate (e.g an EU digital Covid Certificate, Green Pass, or Covid-19 Green Certificate) showing proof they have either been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 with a European Medicine Association authorised vaccine at least 14 days prior to arrival; or a document showing they have previously recovered from Covid-19.
      • The Green Certificate must be in English, Italian, French or Spanish, and is valid for 9 months after the completion of vaccination or valid for 180 days after the first positive molecular test in case of proof of recovery from Covid-19.
    • This does not apply to: 
      • Passengers aged under 6 years old;
      • Crew members;
      • Passengers travelling to or from San Marino or the Vatican;
      • Passengers travelling for proven needs of work, health, or absolute urgency, provided their stay in Italy will not be more than 120 hours;
      • Passengers who will depart from Italy within 36 hours;
      • The staff of businesses and entities with registered offices in Italy, with proof they were travelling outside Italy for work, and who were abroad for less than 120 hours;
      • Cross-border workers entering and leaving the Italy for proven reasons of work or for returning to their home country;
      • Staff of the European Union, international organisations or diplomatic missions;
      • Military personnel and police forces;
      • Students travelling to study in a country other than their country of residence, to which they return daily or at least once a week; or
      • Passengers travelling on Covid-tested flights, in accordance with the Ordinance of the Minister for Health of November 23 2020.
  • Passengers who have been in Canada, Japan or the United States in the past 14 days must either hold a negative Covid-19 molecular or antigenic test result not older than 72 hours prior to arrival; or a Covid Certificate (e.g an EU digital Covid Certificate, Green Pass, or Covid-19 Green Certificate) showing proof they have either been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 with an EMA authorised vaccine at least 14 days prior to arrival, they have received a negative Covid-19 molecular or antigenic test result not older than 72 hours prior to arrival, or they have previously recovered from Covid-19. Passengers not holding a Covid Certificate must quarantine for 10 days and will be subject to testing on day 5.
    • The Green Certificate must be in English, Italian, French or Spanish, and is valid for 9 months after the completion of vaccination or valid for 180 days after the first positive molecular test in case of proof of recovery from Covid-19.
  • This does not apply to: 
    • Passengers aged under 6 years old;
    • Crew members;
    • Passengers travelling to or from San Marino or the Vatican;
    • Passengers travelling for proven needs of work, health, or absolute urgency, provided their stay in Italy will not be more than 120 hours;
    • Passengers who will depart from Italy within 36 hours;
    • The staff of businesses and entities with registered offices in Italy, with proof they were travelling outside Italy for work, and who were abroad for less than 120 hours;
    • Cross-border workers entering and leaving the Italy for proven reasons of work or for returning to their home country;
    • Staff of the European Union, international organisations or diplomatic missions;
    • Military personnel and police forces;
    • Students travelling to study in a country other than their country of residence, to which they return daily or at least once a week; or
    • Passengers travelling on Covid-tested flights, in accordance with the Ordinance of the Minister for Health of November 23 2020.
  • Passengers from countries other than Albania, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, Jordan, Korea (South), Kosovo, Lebanon, Macao, Moldova, Montenegro, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Taiwan, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, or the United States must either hold a per of digital copy of either a negative Covid-19 molecular or antigenic test result not older than 48 hours prior to arrival; or a Covid Certificate (e.g an EU digital Covid Certificate, Green Pass, or Covid-19 Green Certificate) showing proof they have either been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 with a European Medicine Association authorised vaccine at least 14 days prior to arrival; or they hold a document showing they have previously recovered from Covid-19.
    • Passengers who have been in the United Kingdom in the past 14 days must hold a negative PCR or antigen test obtained within 48 hours prior to arrival.
  • This does not apply to:
    • Crew members;
    • Passengers travelling to the Vatican City or San Marino;
    • Cross-border workers or students; or
    • Passengers entering Italy for a period not exceeding 120 hours (five days) for proven necessity due to work, health or absolute emergency.
  • Passengers who have been in the United Kingdom, including Gibraltar and British bases on the island of Cyprus in the past 14 days must hold a negative PCR or antigen test obtained within 48 hours prior to arrival.
  • Passengers travelling from New York to Rome with Alitalia must hold a negative Covid-19 test certificate obtained within 48 hours prior to departure. Passengers not holding a negative certificate will be subject to an antigen test prior to boarding.
  • If passengers transiting through other countries on their journey to Italy, the PCR requirement depends on their departure country.

Quarantine requirements

  • Passengers will be subject to a molecular or antigen swab test on arrival at the airport in Italy, or be subject to a test within 48 hours of entering Italy. This also applies to transport crew and travelling staff.
    • Passengers arriving on direct flights from the United Kingdom must take the test on arrival at the airport.
  • Passengers who have travelled from or transited through India, Bangladesh or Sri Lanka in the past 14 days will be subject to Covid-19 testing on arrival and must quarantine for 10 days with further testing at the end of the quarantine period.
  • Passengers who have visited Brazil in the past 14 days must quarantine for 10 days upon arrival and undergo a PCR or antigen test within 48 hours after arriving in Italy at the end of their quarantine.
  • The quarantine requirement does not apply to the following passengers, provided they are holding a negative Covid-19 PCR or antigen test result obtained within 48 hours prior to arrival:
    • Passengers travelling to Italy for proven business, health or emergency reasons, provided staying less than 120 hours;
    • Officials and agents of the EU or international organizations, diplomatic and law enforcement staff, provided travelling for work;
    • Passengers holding an authorisation issued by the Ministry of Health;
    • Crew.
      • Passengers aged up to 2 years are exempt from the testing requirement.
  • Vaccinated passengers travelling from Canada, Japan, the United Arab Emirates or the United States on 'Covid-Tested' flights are permitted to travel to Italy through the airports of Milan, Naples, Rome and Venice. Passengers must undergo a molecular or antigenic test prior to departure and on arrival. If negative results are received, the passenger will be permitted to enter or transit through Italy without the need to comply with the obligations of health surveillance and quarantine.
  • Passengers travelling from New York to Rome with Alitalia will be subject to an antigen test on arrival in Italy, exempting them from mandatory quarantine.
  • Passengers travelling to Sicily will be subject to an antigen test on arrival. 
  • Passengers aged 6 years or older travelling from or who have been in Albania, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam, Gibraltar, Hong Kong, Jordan, Korea (South), Kosovo, Lebanon, Macao, Moldova, Montenegro, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Taiwan, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, or the United Kingdom (including British bases on the island of Cyprus) in the past 14 days must quarantine for 5 days on arrival. Passengers will also be subject to a molecular or antigen test at the end of the 5 day quarantine period.
  • All passengers travelling from Brazil arriving at Bologna Guglielmo Marconi Airport (BLQ) between 07:00 to 19:30 must perform a free antigen test on arrival. If arriving later than this, the passengers may undergo the mandatory antigen test at the airport within 48 hours.

Exit requirements

  • Passengers must hold a Covid Certificate (e.g an EU digital Covid Certificate, Green Pass, or Covid-19 Green Certificate); or proof they have received at least one dose of a European Medicine Association authorised vaccine at least 14 days before departing from Italy.
  • This does not apply to the following passengers:
    • Passengers holding a negative Covid-19 molecular or antigenic test result not older than 48 hours prior to departure; or
    • Passengers holding a document showing they have previously recovered from Covid-19 within 6 months prior to departure.

This Information is intended as a Guideline.

Issuing Authorities

a) The Italian Embassy, Pretoria

The Consular Section in the Embassy is competent for the metropolitan area of Pretoria, and the Italian citizens residing in the other countries of diplomatic accreditation: Lesotho, Madagascar, Mauritius and Namibia.

NOTE: The Embassy in Pretoria does not issue visas for Normal South African Passport Holders. 

796 George Ave, Arcadia, 0083
Tel: +27 (0)12 423 0000
Fax: +27 (0)12 4305547
E-mail: segreteria.pretoria@esteri.it
Web: www.ambpretoria.esteri.it

Visa Office
Tel: +27 (0)12 423 0025
E-mail: visti.pretoria@esteri.it

Hours: Mon, Thur, Fri: 9:30-12:00
Wed: 09:30-12:00 and 14:00-16:00


b) Consulate-General of Italy, Johannesburg

The Consulate General of Italy in Johannesburg is competent for Gauteng Province (excluding Pretoria), the Free State, North-West, Mpumalanga, Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal.
NOTE: Visa Applications for Normal South African Passport Holders in the above regions can be applied for through VFS Global

37 Cnr First Ave and 2nd Street, Houghton Estate 2198
PO Box 46306, Orange Grove 2119
Tel: + 27 (0)11 728 1392/3
Fax: +27 (0)11 728 1646
Email: consolare.johannesburg@esteri.it
Web: www.consjohannesburg.esteri.it

Visa Office
Tel: +27 (0)11 728 1392/3
Email: visa.johannesburg@esteri.it

Hours: Mon: 09:00-11:30 & 14:00-16:00
Tues, Thurs, Fri: 09:00-11:30


c) Consulate of Italy, Cape Town

The Consulate of Italy in Cape Town is competent for the Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Northern Cape.
NOTE: The last day for Visa Applications with Capago is 18 February 2021. From 1 March 2021, Visa Applications are through VFS Global. During the transition period, applicants can apply directly at Consulate. 

2 Grey's Pass, Gardens, Cape Town, 8001
PO Box 15865, Vlaeberg 8018
Tel: +27 (0)21 487 3900
Fax: +27 (0)21 424 0146
Email: consolato.capetown@esteri.it
Web: www.conscapetown.esteri.it

Visa Office: visa.capetown@esteri.it

Hours: Mon, Tues, Fri: 09:00-11:30
Wed: 09:00-12:00 &14:00 -16:00

Visa Requirements

  • Visas are required by South African passport holders.
  • British passport holders do not require visas. However, if passport is endorsed "British Overseas Citizen", a visa IS required.

VFS Global:  Visa applications for the jurisdiction covered by the Consulate General of Italy in Johannesburg

Johannesburg:  Alice Lane 3rd Floor, North West Wing (Bowmans Building), Corner 5th Street and Alice Lane, Sandhurst, Sandton
Pretoria:  Capital Junction, 1st Floor, 1226 Francis Baard Street, Hatfield
Durban: Suite 407,4th Floor,Medstone Medical Centre,1 UmhlangaRidge Boulevard,Umhlanga, Durban, S.Africa.
Bloemfontein: The Park, Suite 3, 14 Reid Street, Westdene, Bloemfontein
Polokwane: 5860 Landros Mare Street, Thabakgolo Building, 3rd Floor, Limpopo Province, Polokwane
Gaborone (BW): Plot 937, Logan House, African Mall, Gaborone, Botswana

Tel: +27 (0) 12 425 3048
Email: info.itza@vfshelpline.com
Web : www.vfsglobal.com/Italy/Southafrica
Hours: Mon-Fri: 08:00 to 12:30 and 13:30 to 16:00

Cape Town: The agreement with Capago has ended on 18 February 2021. From 19 February 2021, until 29 February 2021, applicants can apply directly at the Consulate. In order to schedule an appointment please write an email to visa.capetown@esteri.it. For more information pertaining to the type of visas we issue according to the current COVID-19 travel restrictions, please visit the website www.vistoperlitalia.esteri.it.

Starting from 1st March 2021, our new outsourcing Visa agency will be VFS Global. The new Cape Town Visa Application Centre for Italy will be located at
9th Floor The Towers, Hertzog Boulevard, Foreshore. For further details as well as to book an online appointment for your visa application, please visit www.vfsglobal.com/italy/southafrica

REQUIREMENTS

NOTE: All applicants 12 years and older must appear in person to submit their applications and biometric data at our branches (if you have obtained a previous Schengen visa in the last 5 years with biometric data captured, you will be exempt from this requirement)
Before visiting the Visa Application Centre, you are required to schedule an appointment

VFS Global: Required Documents - See: https://www.vfsglobal.com/italy/southafrica/how-to-apply.html

CAPAGO: Required Documents - See: https://it-za.capago.eu/requirements/documents

  • Passport (valid for 3 months after date of return, 2 blank pages)
  • Completed Schengen Visa Form
  • 2x ID Photos per Schengen Standards
  • Travel Insurance (Must display name of insured person, policy number, amount (minimum € 30,000) and duration of cover. Insurance must provide for evacuation, repatriation and emergency transportation as well as emergency in/out of hospital medical treatment.)
  • Proof of Accommodation / Tours
  • Return Flight Bookings
  • Proof of Funds (3 months bank statements): Approximately 30 euros per day
  • Letter of Employment: Confirmation of employment on company letterhead and pay slip if applicable
  • Proof of Residence
  • Proof of Payment

 

Visa Cost

EUR 80 (adults) / EUR 40 (minors)
Additional Fees may be applicable through the Visa Application Centres

SA Representative

South African Embassy in Rome
Via Tanaro 14, 00198, Rome
Tel: +39 06 8424 2237
E-mail: rome.consular@dirco.gov.za
Web: www.sudafrica.it

Travel Health

Compulsory:  None
Recommended Travel Vaccines: 

Hepatitis B, Tetanus, Polio