Ireland has now taken the final step in lifting COVID-19 travel restrictions.
“I’ve just signed the regulations removing the COVID-19 requirements for incoming international passengers (Passenger Locator Form, proof of vaccine status/test),” Irish Health Minister Stephen Donnelly wrote on social media last weekend. “These were the last remaining COVID-19 regs. Effective from midnight tonight. Another step forward in our COVID-19 efforts.”
Here’s what the announcement means for travelers. First, as of Sunday, March 6, travelers to Ireland no longer need to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination, proof of recovery, or proof of a negative PCR test result to enter Ireland, Ireland’s Department of Health explains.
Secondly, there are no longer post-arrival test or quarantine requirements for travelers to Ireland. What’s more, travelers to Ireland no longer need to complete a COVID-19 Passenger Locator Form.
However, it’s important to note that travelers to Northern Ireland from overseas still need to comply with UK travel requirements. This includes completing a UK Passenger Locator Form.
Detailed information for those travelers may be found here.
Ireland’s government lifted its remaining COVID-19 restrictions to make it easier for Ukrainian refugees to enter Ireland as they leave their homeland during the ongoing invasion by Russian troops, according to the BBC.
It must be pointed out though, that Ireland was already well on its way to lifting travel restrictions. For instance, restrictions on bars, restaurants, and nightclubs were lifted on January 22. That change meant those types of establishments could resume normal operating hours.
Then, Ireland lifted the mandatory face mask requirement on February 28 based on guidance from Ireland’s National Public Health Emergency Team. Consequently, face masks are now only required in medical settings. They are encouraged, but not required, in all other settings.
That change was finally possible because Ireland’s 7-day incidence of COVID-19 per 100,000 people, its rate of positive laboratory tests, the absolute number of patients whose primary reason for admission to ICU was COVID-19, and other pertinent data all show a declining number of COVID-19 cases in Ireland. This information comes from a letter to Minister of Health Donnely from Tony Holohan, chief medical officer and chair of Ireland’s COVID-19 National Public Health Emergency Team.
Know Before You Go
If you’re planning a trip to Ireland, you’ll be happy to know that slightly more than 80 percent of Ireland’s population is vaccinated for COVID-19, according to data from the Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.
Secondly, Ireland set a new weekly record number of COVID-19 cases the week of January 3 to 9, with 166,264 new cases, according to Johns Hopkins data. Importantly, that number has since fallen to 22,169 new cases reported in the past week.
Likewise, a record-breaking 43,199 new cases were reported in Ireland on January 11, 2022, alone, but that number has also fallen dramatically to 7,491 new cases reported on March 7.
Nonetheless, Ireland is still on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s list of Level 4 countries where there are very high levels of COVID-19. Consequently, the CDC simply tells U.S. citizens to “Avoid travel to Ireland.”
And as you know by now, based on the CDC’s guidance, the U.S. Department of State likewise tells U.S. citizens “Do not travel to Ireland due to COVID-19.”
Be sure to visit the rest of our Ireland coverage, including