Coronavirus (COVID-19): answers to common questions
What is the current situation in Sicily?
In Sicily local health authoritiesare monitoring the situation closely. In compliance with the latest national regulations and the local Government ordinances, all citizens and visitors are requested to follow these rules:
- Stay at least one meter away from other people and avoid crowded places. The ban on public and outdoor gatherings is still in place.
- Wash your hands often.
- Arm yourself with suitable personal protective equipment (masks) in public places where social distancing is not possible. Children under six and people with disabilities that make their use incompatible, are excepted.
- If you have a fever over 37.5 degrees, or you are showing symptoms such as breathing difficulties , you are strongly advised to stay home, restrict all contact with other people, as far as possible and call your doctor or the sanitary services.
- People who have been quarantined or have tested positive for COVID-19 are absolutely prohibited from leaving their home
- A maximum of three people in a car if they are not living with the driver (and for all there is an obligation to wear the protective mask)
For further information visit the official website of Sicilian Government and our dedicated website www.siciliacoronavirus.it
May I book a holiday to Sicily?
Our tourist facilities and all Sicilian tour operators are getting ready to introduce health and safety measures.
Guidelines have been established to which all owners and managers, visitors and public must comply: distance between people (one meter, except for the members of the same family; two meters in the wellness centres (in this case no access to hot and humid environments, for example saunas that can be used by reservation and “exclusively”), “closed numbers” for “indoor” and outdoor shows, obligation to wear the mask in common areas, prohibition of drinking at the bar; obligation to sanitize the surfaces.
The Regional Government has released “SiciliasiCura“, a free web-app for tourists, that will enable their access to health services in case of need. Starting from 8 June and until 30 September, anyone arriving to the island, unless he is a resident or a domiciled person, is required to subscribe to siciliasicura website and complete the online form; download the free app “SiciliaSiCura” from the app stores for Apple or Android phones (SiciliaSicura application user guide)
Is it possible to travel to Sicily?
Travelling to and from Sicily from other Italian regions is allowed with the requirement to observe all the measures to prevent the spread of contagion.
Furthermore travelling to and from the following States is allowed: member States of the European Union (besides Italy, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden and the Czech Republic); States party to the Schengen Agreement (non-EU States party to the Schengen Agreement are: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland);United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; Andorra, Principality of Monaco; Republic of San Marino and Vatican City State
Persons travelling to Sicily from these countries will no longer be required to self–isolate under the supervision of the health authorities for 14 days, unless they have stayed in other Countries during a 14-day period prior to entering Italy.
Traffic restrictions for specific areas can be restored at any time following the aggravation of the epidemic curve.
Very recent containment measures provide that non-resident or non-domiciled people who enter Sicily from 14 August 2020 coming from Greece, Malta, Croatia and Spain, or have only transited from the same countries, have to register on the website SiciliasiCura, and use the connected WebApp. Tourists coming from these countries are required to undergo a swab test directly at Catania and Palermo airports upon their arrival or in any case within 48 hours after their arrival by the local health authority. Meanwhile they have to self-isolate until they get their result.
They can also show a negative Covid-19 swab test and certificate to show that they have tested 72 hours prior to their arrival on the island with negative result.
There are restrictions for the EU countries of Bulgaria and Romania: quarantine is now mandatory for all travellers coming from those countries and also for citizens who have stayed in Romania and Bulgaria during the 14 days prior to their arrival in Italy.
Due to a recent government provision, travellers who have stayed or transited through any of the countries on the following list in the last 14 days are denied entry into Italy: Armenia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Brazil, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chile, Kuwait, North Macedonia, Moldova, Oman, Panama, Peru, Dominican Republic. In order to ensure an adequate level of health protection, both direct and indirect flights to and from the above countries are also suspended.
For more information, please visit the Foreign Affairs website
What services are currently open in Sicily?
There are many services available that have reopened in Sicily.
Our accommodation facilities both indoors and outdoors (campsites), like all providers of tourist services, are ready to ensure the health of guests and locals.These are the health requirements for b/b and hotels: ensure the health of the staff, which must be adequately trained and constantly updated on the measures taken by the structure. Housekeeping activities must be scrupulous and carried out according to strict criteria and with special procedures. From the use of disinfectant products, the treatment of tissues, sheets and clothing up to the management of solid waste potentially in contact with the virus and the use of personal protective equipment in use to all staff who will have to be trained in order to transpose all directives.
Restaurants, pizzerias and bars have remodulated the layout of tables and seats, defining a maximum capacity limit. Booking is often mandatory to avoid crowds of people waiting. Solutions that favour the use of outdoor spaces are favoured. Customers must wear the mask in activities preparatory to or after the meal at the table (for example cash payment, travel, use of toilets). Electronic payments with contactless and provided, if necessary , separation barriers to the cash registers are preferred. There are sanitizing products for customers and staff in several places and in particular, for access to the toilets that will have to be sanitized frequently. At the end of each service at the table should be provided all the usual measures of sanitization of surfaces avoiding as much as possible tools and containers reusable if not sanitized (salt, oil, vinegar, etc.).
Buffets are eliminated and many of the traditional menus are written on blackboards, accessible via apps and sites or printed on disposable sheets.
All kinds of retail shops, shopping malls and outlets, markets, trade fairs and hobbyist markets, craft activities and personal care centres such as hairdressers, barbers and beauty salons: In these exercises it is always necessary to maintain the distance of one metre between people, the obligation to wear a protective mask when distance is not possible. The customers of the single exercises will receive an adequate information on the taken preventive measures and the behaviours to adopt and will have to disposition specific products for the sanitization of the hands. The detection of body temperature may also be required, in order to ensure the safety and health of all guests.
Bathing establishments reopen safely. To self-protection measures, such as interpersonal distances and between umbrellas.
In Sicily, most of the sites, museums and regional archaeological parks have reopened in compliance with security measures and regulations for the containment of contagion with mandatory reservation and quota numbers. So, access to UNESCO sites such as the Valley of the Temples of Agrigento, the Villa Romana del Casale in Piazza Armerina, the Archaeological area of Syracuse, the Ancient Theatre of Catania and Taormina, in addition to Segesta and Selinunte must be booked online on the web app youline.eu in the section of the Sicilian Region that brings together the main places of culture of the island. The rules of access may vary from structure to structure; in any case, there are “standardized” measures to be adhered to such as the obligation of the protective mask for staff and visitors, the obligation to maintain interpersonal safety distances, predefined routes for the entry and exit of the public, the adoption of dispensers with disinfectant gel at the entrance and along the routes to follow.
In compliance with security measures and regulations for the containment of contagion, some open-air theatres and cinemas have reopened. Currently, only events and performances that allow the spectators to seat distanced, are allowed. Taormina Arte Festival has started the 2020 season at Taormina Ancient Theater by implementing all the safety measures and adapting, in respect of social distancing, all the spaces of the archaeological site. The Greek Theatre of Syracuse has postponed the classic tragedies to 2021 but in this summer 2020 offers live shows with online booking on the site of the obligatory theatre (with monologues and concerts) for no more than 480 spectators. The Cous Cous Fest, scheduled in San Vito Lo Capo September 18 to 27 ,has been cancelled.
Starting from August 17, activities in the outdoors or indoors dance halls, discos and similar venues, are suspended. Furthermore, from 06:00 p.m. to 6.00 a.m., wearing protective masks is mandatory even outdoors, in all spaces pertaining to places open to the public as well as in public spaces (squares, open spaces, streets) where it is easy to create gatherings even if spontaneously and/or occasionally.
It is possible to play sports both outdoors and indoors such as gyms, swimming pools, clubs and sports clubs, without the requirement of the mask during the activity but in compliance with the distance of two meters between people and the absolute prohibition of gathering.
It is possible to take the cable car and the minibus 4 x4 for the excursion to the craters of Etna in compliance with the safety measures and the rules for the containment of the contagion: aeration, use of the mask, sanitizing gel, temperature measurement. The cabins, generally with six seats, are accessible to only 2 passengers at a time, except for families. Sanitation is daily. The same measurements were also taken for the minibus4x 4.
The adventure parks reappear in compliance with the maintenance of safety distances, the prohibition of gathering and the rules for the containment of contagion. The Madonie Park, the Bioparco di Sicilia in Carini (PA) or the Adventure Park Etnea di Milo (CT) , thanks to the large spaces immersed in nature, will ensure access , even the smallest can observe the safe distance, without difficulty. In any case, the online reservation to be made on the sites of the individual parks is mandatory.
During the summer season 2020, in Sicily the Acquaparks will remain closed. Public parks and play areas for children are accessible with appropriate prevention measures.
To ensure greater security, in almost all facilities you need to book. The customers of the single exercises will receive an adequate information on the taken preventive measures and the behaviours to adopt and will have to disposition specific products for the sanitization of the hands. The use of the mask, owned by the customer, remains mandatory in cases where the minimum interpersonal distance cannot be respected. The detection of body temperature may also be required, in order to ensure the safety and health of all guests.
Is public transport working regularly?
Extra-urban scheduled transport provides regular travelling within the Region. The urban line of public transport is also working regularly, but it is advisable to check the websites of the transport companies before traveling.
Boats and ferries to the smaller Sicilian islands are regularly operating . We advise to check the companies’ websites to be updated on their timetables.
To protect all passengers, it is required to collaborate by rigorously observing use face masks.
What is the situation at airports?
Passengers and visitors will be guided by signage towards the mandatory routes in and out of the airport. The adhesives on the floor will indicate the waiting points turn, while the dividing panels and codometers will define the areas. The sound announcements will communicate to all the rules on social distancing. In addition, physical barriers will be installed to limit and control, with the help of electronic tools, the maximum number of passengers in shared spaces (gates, shops, for example), in order to prevent overcrowding. Departing and arriving passengers must use masks and gloves. Airport staff will wear plexiglass visual screens and personal protective equipment. The passage from the terminal, for the flows of passengers, companions, workers in and out, will involve well-defined routes. In each entrance/exit from the terminal will be installed a thermo scanner for the control of the body temperature under the monitoring of the sanitary staff
In case of troubles who can I turn to?
The Sicilian Health System is ready to face and manage the situation: besides the Emergency Phone number 112, the Sicilian Government has introduced the Official Coronavirus toll-free number, 800458787, in order to assist citizens at any time. Specifically, one can receive assistance and information about the Government action plan following the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Italy and Sicily. This service, available 24 hours a day, has also the purpose of avoiding the spread of untrusted data and false information. Airtports ‘Vincenzo Bellini’ of Catania and ‘Falcone Borsellino’ of Palermo have set up special areas to test for the virus all passengers coming from the four EU countries, Greece, Malta, Spain and Croatia, not residing in Sicily.
The Sicilian Health System is ready to face and manage the situation: besides the Emergency Phone number 112, the Sicilian Government has introduced the Official Coronavirus toll-free number, 800458787, in order to assist citizens at any time. Specifically, one can receive assistance and information about the Government action plan following the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Italy and Sicily. This service, available 24 hours a day, has also the purpose of avoiding the spread of untrusted data and false information.
N.B. This information is subject to constant changes in relation to the evolution of the international scenario. For more information on the availability of services, please contact the Companies directly.
For tourist information on specific Sicilian locations it is possible to contact local Tourist desks by e-mail