Museum attendance and income during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemicIn Italy, public museums are cultural institutions managed by the Italian Ministry of Culture, otherwise known as Ministero della Cultura (MiC). Meanwhile, private museums are institutions managed by either private entities or public entities other than the MiC. Italian private museums welcomed more than 74.5 million visitors prior to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in 2019. Post-pandemic, many institutions saw a sharp decline in attendance. This was the case for the total number of visitors to state museums, monuments, and archaeological sites in Italy, which reached around 13.3 million in 2020, dropping from nearly 55 million in 2019. Similarly, the number of visitors to the archaeological park of the Colosseum in Rome – one of the most visited museums In Italy – decreased by over 6.5 million from 2019 to 2020.
With the decrease in attendance came a decline in revenue. While the Colosseum topped the list of the tourist attractions generating the highest income in Italy in 2020, it lost nearly 49 million euros when compared to the previous year. Meanwhile, the income of state museums in Italy amounted to roughly 52 million euros in 2020, after having peaked at over 242 million euros in 2019.