Italy will be ready to open up to tourists from mid-May, according to the President.
Mario Draghi said that Italy would have its own “national green pass”, allowing people to move freely between Italian regions, before the EU’s planned Digital Green Certificate was up and running.
“Waiting for the European Certificate ... we have a national green pass that will enable people to move from region to region and will be operational by mid-May, so let us not wait until mid-June for the EU pass,” he told a meeting of tourism ministers, reports Reuters.
“In mid-May tourists can have the Italian pass ... so the time has come to book your holidays in Italy.”
The EU’s proposed certificate will be its version of a so-called “vaccine passport”, enabling easier travel between member states by having one universally acknowledged digital pass that can store a person’s vaccine status or Covid test results.
It is expected to be ready at some point in June, but some individual EU countries have already stated their intention to open for tourism prior to that in May.
Aside from Italy, the tourism-dependent countries of Portugal, Spain and Greece have all announced plans to allow holidaymakers back from the middle of this month.
It coincides with the UK’s own date from when foreign holidays will no longer be banned in England: 17 May.
International travel will operate under a traffic light system, with countries classified as green, amber or red depending on their Covid infection rates, with corresponding levels of restrictions for returning travellers.
The government is expected to announce the “green list” – destinations with the lightest restrictions – on 7 May.
Most of Europe is expected to be amber initially, with Iceland, Malta, Gibraltar and Portugal mooted as possible green list candidates.