Italian ski resorts remain closed

9th December 2020, by Abi Butcher

Champoluc in the Aosta Valley is now in an 'orange zone'

Champoluc in the Aosta Valley is now in an 'orange zone'

Skiing remains off the cards in Italy to anyone except professional athletes, with new regulations introduced last week to prevent travel between different regions and communes to help reduce the spread of coronavirus.

From 21 December to 6 January, travel between different regions will be prohibited, which is a blow to ski resorts hoping to allow second homers to enjoy the mountains and provide a much-needed boost to mountain economy during the Covid pandemic.

Six of Italy’s ski regions — Lombardy, Veneto, Trentino-Alto Adige/South Tyrol, Piedmont, the Aosta Valley and Friuli Venezia Giulia — had put forward a proposal to the government that included limiting capacity on lifts to 50 per cent and banning day trippers (which would allow second homers to ski).

But the suggestions were dismissed, with regulations designed specifically to prevent people travelling to second homes in the mountains and visiting relatives over Christmas. Roberto Speranza, the Italian health minister, said: “It will be necessary to avoid potential gatherings in places of tourist attraction linked in particular to skiing activities.”

Many ski areas are in high-risk ‘red’ zones, though the Aosta valley is in orange, which means coronavirus cases are falling. Champoluc ski operator, Ski 2, said: “The main gondola is now open, but only for use by the local ski club who have access to Pistone piste, the run in to the village, for training purposes. All other lifts will be closed until at least 6 January 2021, when the rules will be reviewed again.”

Most hotels in mountain regions remain closed.

Elsewhere in Europe, ski lifts in Austria are turning, but for locals only, with no overnight stays allowed — and in Switzerland. But skiing is currently prohibited in France, Germany and Italy. 

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