Reconsider travel to Italy due to a recent outbreak of COVID-19
Level 4 - Do Not Travel to:
Lombardy and Veneto due to the level of community transmission of the virus and imposition of local quarantine procedures.
There is a widespread ongoing outbreak of respiratory illness (COVID-19) caused by a novel (new) coronavirus that can be spread from person to person. Many cases of COVID-19 have been associated with travel to or from mainland China or close contact with a travel-related case, but widespread sustained community spread has been reported in Italy. The CDC has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for Italy. At this time, CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential travel to Italy. Travelers should review and follow the Centers for Disease Control’s guidelines for the prevention of coronavirus if they decide to travel to Italy. Italy has a longstanding risk presented by terrorist groups, who continue plotting possible attacks in Italy. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, local government facilities, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, major sporting and cultural events, educational institutions, airports, and other public areas.
Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page. If you decide to travel to Italy:
Read the Centers for Disease Control’s and Prevention guidelines for the prevention of COVID-19 and information on health conditions in Italy.
Review the Embassy’s latest alerts and the embassy’s webpage on COVID-19 in Italy for additional information. Follow Italian health official guidance and avoid government-designated affected areas.
Have a plan to depart from Italy that does not rely on U.S. government assistance.
Be aware of your surroundings when traveling to tourist locations and crowded public venues.
Follow the instructions of local authorities.
Monitor local media for breaking events and adjust your plans based on new information.
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
Review the Crime and Safety Reports for Italy.
Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations.
Safety and Security:
Several major earthquake fault lines cross Italy. Principal Italian cities, with the exception of Naples, do not lie near these faults; however, smaller tourist towns, such as Assisi, do lie near faults and have experienced earthquakes. An earthquake severely damaged the town of L’Aquila in 2009. General information about disaster preparedness is available online from the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Detailed information on Italy's fault lines is available from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).
Italy also has several active volcanoes generating geothermal events. Mt. Etna, on the eastern tip of the island of Sicily, has been intermittently erupting since 2000. Mt. Vesuvius, located near Naples, is currently capped and not active. Activity at Mt. Vesuvius is monitored by an active seismic network and sensor system, and no recent seismic activity has been recorded. Two of Italy's smaller islands, Stromboli and Vulcano, in the Aeolian Islands north of Sicily, also have active volcanoes with lava flows. Detailed information on volcano activity in Italy is available from the USGS.
Politically motivated violence in Italy is most often connected to Italian internal developments or social issues. Italian authorities and foreign diplomatic facilities have found bombs outside public buildings, received bomb threats, and have been subjects of letter bombs in the past several years. Organized crime and anarchist movements sometimes use firebombs or Molotov cocktails against buildings or offices. These attacks generally occur at night, and although they have not targeted or injured U.S. citizens, you should remain aware of your surroundings and report any suspicious activity to local authorities.
Demonstrations may have an anti-U.S. character, especially in areas hosting U.S. military bases. Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful have the potential to turn confrontational and possibly escalate into violence. You should take common sense precautions and follow news reports carefully. Stay up to date by reading the Embassy’s Demonstration Notices.
Italian authorities have made several high-profile arrests involving members or affiliates of transnational terror groups. Like other countries in the Schengen area, Italy’s open borders with its Western European neighbors allow for the possibility of terrorist groups entering/exiting the country with anonymity.