Italy's Alitalia to Operate COVID-Free Flights Between Rome and Milan

Sept. 16, 2020

Rome (dpa) - Italian airline Alitalia is going to operate flights between Rome and Milan only for passengers who have tested negative for the novel coronavirus.

The restriction will be applied from Wednesday to two out of the seven flights departing daily from Rome Fiumicino to Milan Linate airports, a statement said.

Passengers wishing to board those flights will have to undergo testing at Rome airport or show proof that they tested negative in the 72 hours prior to departure.

Virus testing facilities at Fiumicino have recently been upgraded and priority lanes will be available for passengers heading to Milan, Alitalia said.

The measure is designed to "strenghten travellers' confidence in travelling" and might be extended to other flight routes, the airline said.

Italy was the first Western country to be hit with the coronavirus pandemic, but, after a severe health emergency in March and April, it brought infection rates under control in the following months.

However, virus numbers have crept up again since the second half of July, and with the reopening of schools this month, fears about a possible second wave of infections have increased.

On Tuesday, health authorities reported 1,229 new cases and nine deaths, bringing the total infection count to 289,990 and the overall death toll to 35,633.

According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), Italy has had 32.4 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 inhabitants over the last 14 days.

By comparison, Spain has had 278.8, France 158.5 and Germany 21.9.


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