Ireland has added India and four other countries to its list of “Category 2” locations that are subject to a mandatory 14-day hotel quarantine. The change took effect May 4.

Key Points:

  • The countries that were added to the “Category 2” list are India, Costa Rica, Georgia, Iran and Mongolia.
  • There are now 71 countries and territories classified as “Category 2.” The full list is available here.
  • The mandatory hotel quarantine applies to anyone who has been in any of the “Category 2” locations in the 14 days before entering Ireland, including people who transited through any of the countries/territories. It also applies to anyone who does not have a negative or “not detected” RT-PCR test, regardless of from where they are traveling.
  • Affected travelers will be required to complete 14 days of mandatory hotel quarantine at a designated facility. The accommodation must be pre-booked and paid for before traveling to Ireland. The quarantine time can be reduced if a traveler receives a negative/not detected result from a COVID-19 test that is taken after ten days. The quarantine time will be extended if an individual tests positive during their stay.

Additional Information: Individuals traveling from a “Category 2” country or territory will met by members of the Defence Forces upon arriving in Ireland to ensure that they are safely and securely transported to the location where they will complete their pre-booked quarantine. Travelers will receive a letter at the end the 14 days confirming that they have completed their quarantine. If affected travelers do not fulfil the legal requirement for mandatory hotel quarantine, they are committing an offense and may face penalties, including fines of up to €2,000, a prison sentence of up to one month, or both.

Exemptions to the mandatory hotel quarantine include:

  • Travelers arriving to Ireland in the course of duty and who hold a valid Annex 3 certificate (ensuring the availability of goods and essential services).
  • Travelers arriving to Ireland in the course of duty and who are drivers of a heavy goods vehicle.
  • Airline pilots, aircrew, maritime master or maritime crew and who arrive in Ireland in the course of performing duties.
  • Those traveling to Ireland pursuant to an arrest warrant, extradition proceedings or other mandatory legal obligation.
  • Members of An Garda Síochána or Defence Forces (or their equivalents from another state) and traveling to Ireland in course of duty.
  • Those traveling to Ireland for unavoidable, imperative and time-sensitive medical reasons, provided these reasons are certified by a registered medical practitioner or person with equivalent qualifications outside of Ireland.
  • Those who were outside of Ireland to provide services to or perform the functions of an office holder (under any enactment or the Constitution) or a member of either House of the Oireachtas or the European Parliament.
  • Diplomats and certain other categories of persons entitled to privileges and immunities in Ireland.

Analysis & Comments: It is important to note that the list of designated states will be subject to change at short notice and passengers should be sure to check the list before traveling to Ireland, to be sure of their obligations.

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