Italy Delays Opening Ski Resorts

Italy has postponed the reopening of its ski resorts until later this month at the earliest. January 18th is the date pencilled in. In the Pyrenees Andorra has open some slopes for local residents only. UPDATED

Regional authorities have asked for more time to meet coronavirus regulations.

The ordinance was signed over the weekend by the health minister, Roberto Speranza.

The resorts had planned to open on January 7th but the authorities said the move was “not realistic’.

On Saturday, Italy reported another 9,166 new infections and 364 deaths from Covid-19.

It has 178 confirmed cases of Covid-19 per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.

By comparison here are some of the other ski nations.

Andorra 464, Switzerland 280, France 143 and Austria 155.

The UK has a rate of 551.

Vaccinations started in Italy on 27th December and more than 70,000 doses had been administered by Sunday 3rd January.

The resorts in France are due to be able to start their ski lifts running on 7th January, but concerns are rising across the border in the French Alps.

“At the present time, due to the recent epidemiological trend at international level that has not facilitated the taking of the necessary decisions, it is believed that the conditions do not exist to allow initiatives and actions to allow the opening of the facilities on January 7,” said the authorities in Italy.

La Thuille, Aosta Valley, Italy

La Thuile, Aosta Valley, Italy. Image © PlanetSKI.

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The Italian government’s scientific technical committee, which advises on Covid-19 rules,  signalled “medium-high” risk of crowds, inside gondolas, as well as at lift lines and during après-ski.

One of our regualr readers from Italy is the race coach, Phil Brown, who lives year-round in Aosta.

“In the Aosta Valley, the official news is that the resorts will open on January 18th, provided the region remains a ‘yellow zone’,” said Phil.

“It will make little difference to UK holiday makers until travel becomes more permissible,” he added.

In the Pyrenees, Andorra opened its ski resorts on Saturday but only for residents of the independent principality that sits between France and Spain.

“Today is Opening Day in Grandvalira!,” said the Andorra ski area on Saturday.

“The slopes of Pas de la Casa haven’t opened yet, however, there are lifts running in the areas of Grau Roig, Arcalís, Soldeu, Tarter, Canillo.

“Until January 9th the lifts of Grandvalira are only open for Andorran Residents.”

See here for a separate PlanetSKI story on the slopes opening in Andorra: