Italy Update, 4-8 May 2020

8 May 2020

On Monday May 4th, Phase 2 started in Italy: the possibility to go out to visit relatives and the opening of many companies and factories led to more traffic in most of the cities but overall the health measures were strictly applied in public places, at work and on public transports, allowing a controlled and quite safe end of the lockdown. 

WHAT NUMBERS TELL US

Italian epidemic curve is continuing its decreasing trend, and this week the lowest number of new cases have been registered.

A plasma treatment developed by an hospital in Mantua, has been proved successful in 48 patients; the cure is now under further study and the hospital is being contacted from all over the world, to test the treatment on many other ill patients. More info

The Ministry of Health latest update is dated May 7th at 6pm reports 89,624 positive cases, a total of 29,958 deaths and a total of 96,276 healed patients. More info

Covid-19 in Europe

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GOVERNMENT MEASURES

On May 4th the new decree of Phase 2 entered into force and stated the end of the strict lock down started on March 9th. The reopening of many production and manufacturing factories and companies, together with the reduction of the prohibitions to go out, with now the possibility of going to parks and do sport activities also far from home, together with the chance to go and visit relatives, generally created more traffic around the cities and on public transports but everywhere the health measures were generally respected. The Government is working on the next steps of the reopening, studying plans to allow restaurants, bars and beauty centers to safely reopen. Phase 2 will be on at least until May 18th, then a new decree with further indications is expected. More info

The European Commission and the 27 European Tourism Ministries are discussing a ‘COVID Passport’ linked to the Schengen Visa alongside an EU certification system. More info

By May 18th, less restrictive measures are expected, together with indications for the Summer holidays. In fact, the Government anticipated that they are working on a plan for mobility during Summer and measures that holiday destinations as beaches, hotels etc. will need to apply to safely preserve the Summer break.
According to the data collected by the Digital Innovation Tourism Observatory of the School of Management of the Politecnico di Milano, Italians want to return to planning a holiday after the emergency, marking a very positive sign for tourism. 83% of the travellers are planning to have their holidays inside the country. More info
Data collected by Comscore show some encouraging signs of renewed consumer interest from across Europe in some sectors, including events and travel: for example, visits to sites or apps in the “Tickets” category increased during the week of 13 April – 19 April 2020 compared to the previous week, with an increase of 46% in Italy. 
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Trends: according to a survey by ManoMano.it, an e-commerce focused on outdoor activities equipments, 31% of Italians is planning one or two weeks on holiday this Summer, with particular interest in the contact with nature, with outdoor activities, tent and camping. On the other hand, the first travel segment expected to faster recover is luxury, privileging private services with particular attention to security.

Italy Insights
  • Apulia Region launches In-Formati,a platform that allows users to learn and inform themselves about the activities of the Puglia Promozione agency and the Region, particularly useful of the tourism professionals. More info

  • Sicily is ready to offer half the price of the air ticket and a third of the nights in hotels, in addition to free entry to most museums and archaeological sites on the island. More info

  • Trentino: in July the new luxury retreat Forestis, a five-star wellness hotel perched at 1,800 meters above sea level with a view of the Dolomites, will open in Bressanone, South Tyrol. More info

  • Liguria: Acquario di Genova and Galata Museo del Mare join the special 2020 edition of Kidpass Days, the digital event dedicated to families, designed to discover the cultural, historical, artistic and scientific heritage of all Italy and to spread the accessibility of culture for children. It is a great marathon of online events organized simultaneously on Saturday May 9th and Sunday 10th, in collaboration with over 50 museums, cultural spaces, archaeological parks and associations from all Italian regions. More info

From abroad
  • Greece to open hotels, bars and restaurants from June 1st, making a first step in the relaunch of tourism. More info

  • Portugal has introduced the new Clean & Safe hygiene certification to recognize tourist establishments compliant with health requirements for the prevention and control of COVID-19 and other infections. More info

  • Germany is starting planning holidays not only domestic but also to some European countries as Italy, Spain and Greece. More info

  • Egypt is opening to tourists from beginning of June, with hotels and airport to respect all the measures to guarantee safety for visitors. More info

  • UAE: Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority launched the ‘Stay Safe RAK’ campaign, requiring hotels to fulfill a set of measures to attain the RAK ‘Stay Safe’ Hotel Certification. More info

  • Turkey Culture and Tourism Minister announced a new initiative and auditing program to certify tourist attractions, involving transportation, facilities, and passengers. More info

  • Thailand announced the ‘Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration: SHA’ certification. More info

  • Singapore Tourism Board launched an audit initiative SG Clean for hotels and attractions: those which pass the audit will receive the SG Clean stamp. More info

  • Azerbaijan Tourism Board launched SAHMAN (Sanitation and Hygiene Methods and Norms), a nationwide campaign set to transform Azerbaijan’s existing health, safety and hygiene standards. More info

On the hotel side

  • Confindustria Alberghi together with the other organisations representing the Italian hotel tourism sector signed a protocol whose aim is to protect the health of guests and workers by guaranteeing safety within the facilities while preserving the traditional spirit of hospitality typical of the Italian hotel industry. The protocol suggests what measures can be taken during the various processes of hotel service provision. More info

  • Accor and Bureau Veritas have joined forces to launch new label designed to certify that the appropriate safety standards and cleaning protocols have been achieved to allow businesses to reopen. More info

  • Marriott International announced a new Global Cleanliness Council and will benefit from knowledge and input from both in-house and outside experts including senior leaders from across Marriott disciplines like housekeeping, engineering, food safety, occupational health and associate well being. More info

  • Hyatt announced a Global Care & Cleanliness Commitment  to further enhance its operational guidance and resources around colleague and guest safety and peace of mind. More info

  • Hilton announced a new program Hilton CleanStay set to launch in June 2020 to deliver an industry-defining standard of cleanliness and disinfection in Hilton properties around the world. More info

Tour Operators

  • CEO of Alpitour group, the biggest Italian TO, affirms that 74% of their clients is ready to travel again soon. More info

  • DLT Viaggi launches a voucher circuit similar to a real virtual currency; vouchers are valid for 24 months from their issue and can be used on all the more than 1,000 travel solutions. More info

  • Sporting Vacanze has opened sales for winter 2020/2021 with the promotions “More Sell More Travel” and “Speedy Winter”, two different initiatives keeping the focus on the Maldives, a destination that continues to generate important sales results among Italian travellers. More info

Events

International – Reed Travel Exhibitions has rescheduled the dates of the three world spring fairs in its Wtm portfolio: Wtm Latin America (that will be held on October 0th -22nd 2020), Arabian Travel Market (Atm) (now fixed on May 2021) and Africa Travel Week (postponed to 2021). More info 

Israel decided to postpone the Pride Month (June) and the four largest pride parades – Haifa, Jerusalem, Be’er Sheva and Tel Aviv-Yafo with the idea to be held later in Summer, while the month of June will be filled with Virtual Pride Events. More info 

Lithuania: Vilnius presents Mask Fashion Weeks: the streets of the city are dotted with giant photos of people wearing protective masks made in creative ways. The images are part of a new project called Mask Fashion Week, which drew its inspiration from members of a Facebook group known as Mask Your Fashion. More info

Italy – Biennale of architecture in Venice is confirmed and will be held from August 29th and it is already possible to purchase tickets. More info 

Transports

The Minister of Infrastructure and Transport has given the green light with immediate effect to the reopening of Orio al Serio airport. This is the first reopening to air traffic in Lombardy in phase 2 of the coronavirus emergency. Sacbo, the company that manages the airport, affirmed that access will be subject to restrictions, in compliance with current regulations on controls and social distancing. More info

easyjet opened sales for the Summer season with flights until August 30th 2020. More info

KLM reopened on may 5th its connection from Milan Malpensa and Rome to Amsterdam.  More info
In total, the airlines restarted this week 8 services including Barcelona, Madrid, Budapest, Praga, Warsaw and Helsinki, besides the 2 Italian cities. More info

Turkish Airlines announced that is getting ready to restart operations in June with domestic flights and towards 19 foreign countries; they are then expecting to return to all normal operations between July and August. More info

The Romanian company Blue Air announces the new direct connection Verona-Iasi, operating from next June 16th. More info 

Spanish Government confirmed its support to Iberia and Vueling, part of the Ibero-British IAG group, for one billion euros in loans guaranteed by the Madrid government to deal with the fallout caused by the coronavirus pandemic. More info 

MEDIA

According to a research by GKF, present situation changed the way people approach media, showing a +18% of daily time spent watching TV, mainly registered among Generation Z (+25%) and X (+24%). Web had become more diversified and also saw and increase of 25% of daily time spent, with a +33% only in the Generation Z.


Hearst Italia barometer: how celebrities and influencers changed their Instagram posts and profile, to combine them with the quarantine period.
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YouTube host the virtual CR Runway event with Irina Shayk, Adriana Lima and other fashion stars to raise funds to support coronavirus fight.
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PEOPLE

Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado, with the support of celebrities as Gisele Bündchen, Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep, Madonna, Pedro Amodovar, raised an appeal to save the Amazon Indians, who came into contact with Covid-19 because of contact with miners, woodcutters and farmers who illegally invaded their reserves, are now threatened with extinction.
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Biba Giacchetti, curator of the exhibition “Elliott Erwitt Family” hosted at the Museo delle Culture, proposes every Saturday the initiative “Una pausa ad Arte”, 5 video pills presenting the exhibition on her social channels Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
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BRANDS

Virgin Active is trying to maintain motivation and good mood for all trainers and employees, proposing some activities that the Virgin team shares weekly, including mindfulness meditation videos to increase awareness and quietness, but also food contests with prizes for the best home “cooks” and virtual sharing spaces where employees are invited to ask or share some advice on how to organize the days alone or with children. DISCOVER MORE


All fashion brands are ready to restart working with phase 2, guaranteeing the safety of their employees and not only: at Sodexo, 200 top managers waived their bonus for fiscal year 2020 and all members of the Executive Committee will contribute with 10% of their salary; The Prada Group is the first Italian company to introduce a cutting-edge security protocol that provides for a double screening of its employees thanks to the collaboration with the Careggi Hospital in Florence.
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OTHER

At STEMintheCity 2020 is the Science Hour. A new initiative by the Bracco Foundation for schools on the occasion of STEMintheCity 2020, which this year is in a digital version. Online materials for teachers, a call for students and an invitation to girls: beware of stereotypes.
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#Inviaggiodaldivano, a virtual trip to the United States to discover the natural and artistic beauty of New England.
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