Questions and Answers: Which Covid rules now apply to holiday destinations that are most popular with Irish tourists?

Questions and Answers: Which Covid rules now apply to holiday destinations that are most popular with Irish tourists?

As the summer season draws to a close and many Irish people are preparing to take their first holiday since the Covid-19 pandemic began, it is important to check the requirements of the country you are traveling to.

We look at some of the most popular destinations for Irish tourists, many of which have their own individual requirements for travelers entering the country.

Italy

There are no longer any public health restrictions or requirements for Irish tourists entering Italy.

Since 1 June, the European vaccination card is no longer required to enter the country from both EU Member States and other foreign countries.

However, all passengers entering Italy by plane, ferry, train or bus must wear an FFP2 mask.

France

If you travel from Ireland and are fully vaccinated, or have a negative test result, or if you have evidence of recovery from Covid-19, you will be allowed to enter France without being subject to further restrictions or quarantine.

If you recover, you must present a recovery certificate dated more than 11 days and less than six months before the date of arrival.

If you are unvaccinated, you must present a negative PCR test taken no later than 72 hours before departure or an antigen test taken no later than 48 hours before departure.

However, the antigen test must be tested for a specific SARS-CoV-2 N protein to be considered valid, and travelers should check this with the test provider.

Children under the age of 12 are exempt from these requirements.

Air travelers need to fill out a form to find passengers before entry, but passengers traveling by sea or land do not need to fill out this form.

Spain

There are no Covid-19 restrictions in place for travel to Spain from Ireland or any other EU or Schengen country.

However, for those traveling from outside the EU, including Northern Ireland, there is a requirement to present a valid Covid vaccination certificate or to complete the Spanish Travel Health Check form, which contains the details of your vaccination, recovery or diagnostic test certificate.

Portugal

Passengers arriving in Portugal must present proof of their vaccination, recovery or negative status.

People should present the European digital Covid certificate or equivalent valid proof of complete vaccination at least 14 days and no more than 270 days before the trip. However, there is no time limit in situations where passengers have received a booster dose.

For those who are unvaccinated, a valid proof of recovery can also be accepted to enter the country as well as a PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure or a rapid antigen test taken professionally within 24 hours of departure.

A form to find passengers is no longer required to travel to Portugal.

UK

Under existing UK regulations, passengers arriving in the UK from Ireland do not have to fill out a passenger location form, isolate themselves or undergo tests, unless they have been outside the common travel area for the past 10 days.

The common travel area includes Ireland, the United Kingdom, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands.

These rules apply regardless of whether an individual is vaccinated or not.

USA

Fully vaccinated foreign nationals can enter the United States if they provide proof of vaccination status and a negative Covid-19 test.

The negative Covid-19 result must come from a test taken no more than one day before the trip to the United States. The test requirement applies to all passengers, regardless of citizenship, and covers children over the age of two.

The test result can be from either an antigen, PCR or LAMP test.

Passengers who have recovered from Covid-19 in the last 90 days can present documentation showing evidence of recovery as an alternative to meeting the requirement for negative tests.

Documentation of recovery must include a positive virus test result and a letter from a licensed health care provider or public health official stating that you have permission to travel.

Children under the age of 18 do not have to show proof of vaccination status. There are other, very limited exceptions to this requirement, including for people who are medically unable to receive the vaccine.

Will be back to Ireland

Since 6 March 2022, travelers to Ireland will not be required to show proof of vaccination, proof of recovery or negative PCR test result on arrival.

There are also no post-arrival tests or quarantine requirements for travelers to Ireland.

What more do I need to know?

People traveling abroad this summer are urged by the State Department to stay informed about Covid-related rules and to check that they have proper travel insurance as the direction of the pandemic is still uncertain.

It recommends that people, along with their shorts and T-shirts, should pack both adequate insurance and a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC).

“Irish people love to travel, but our message is that things are not quite back to normal,” said Deirdre Ní Fhallúin, head of international travel at the department’s consular department.

She also urged people to make sure they have adequate travel insurance and to make sure they have an updated EHIC card that entitles you to free care throughout the EU.

She noted that changes to the travel rules can take effect very quickly depending on the path of the virus at any given time and urged people to be aware of it as they look forward to a summer of travel.

The Foreign Ministry websitewhich contains detailed information on 200 countries including the security and Covid status of each of them, “used to be a dusty corner of the site” but has become the first port of call for potential travelers.

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