Don't go to Italy unless absolutely necessary, cautions Dutch government

Dutch travel advisory for Italy, March 6 - 10, 2020
The Dutch government's travel advisories to Italy on March 6, March 8, and March 10, 2020 (L-R)Ministry of Foreign AffairsRijksvoorlichtingsdienst

The Netherlands released a stricter travel advisory for its citizens wanting to go to Italy. The update was due to the emergency measures Italian authorities put in place yesterday as an urgent means to fight the spread of coronavirus there. The new warning is the fourth updated advisory covering Italy, and it also affects the nations of San Marino and Vatican City.

Dutch people should only travel to the area if "absolutely necessary, the Dutch government implored. "Public life is almost at a standstill: all events and sports matches have been canceled. Museums, cinemas, ski resorts and schools are closed. Restaurants can only be open during the day," the travel advisory said.

"The Italian government has announced expanded emergency measures for the entire country. Only commuters and mandatory medical or family visits are still permitted," the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

"People are advised to keep at least one meter apart."

From the areas in the north and east of particular concern, "Departure from these provinces is possible for foreign tourists. Dutch travelers in these areas are advised to leave with the existing options (by train, bus, road, air traffic), in line with instructions from the Italian authorities," the ministry said.

Dutch travel advisories are color coded, with "red" equivalent to a fully negative travel warning, "orange" meaning only travel when absolutely unavoidable, and "yellow" to indicate there are safety concerns and people should take caution. "Green" indicates there are no known issues.

The portion of the Italian Peninsula from Florence south to Catanzaro, including San Marino and Vatican City and the islands of Sardinia and Sicily, was downgraded from yellow to orange on Tuesday. Most of the region north of Florence was already red or orange.

The Lombardy region and the provinces of Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Reggio Emilia, Rimini, Pesaro-Urbino, Alessandria, Asti, Novara, Verbano Cussio Ossola, Vercelli, Padova, Treviso and Venice are red areas," the ministry said. 

Dutch airlines KLM and Transavia, as well as Alitalia and EasyJet, have all recently cancelled flights from Amsterdam to Italy.