Under a change that took effect Jan. 16, all passengers arriving into Ireland are required to have a negative/“not detected” result from a pre-departure COVID-19 PCR test carried out no more than 72 hours before arrival in Ireland.

Arrivals from Great Britain and South Africa will continue to require a negative/“not detected” result from a pre-departure COVID-19 PCR test and must continue to isolate for 14 days in Ireland, even if they take a second test after arrival.

Key Points:

  • The change took effect on Saturday, Jan. 16. The policy for travelers entering Ireland from Great Britain and South Africa has been in effect since Jan. 9.
  • The requirements apply to all travelers arriving in Ireland, regardless of nationality.
  • Passengers may be asked to present evidence of their negative/“not detected” result before boarding their airplane or ferry, and will be required to produce this evidence to Immigration officers on arrival at points of entry to Ireland.
  • Passengers who arrive in an Irish airport or sea port without evidence of a negative/“not detected” COVID-19 PCR test result will have committed an offense and may be subject to prosecution, punishable by a fine not exceeding €2,500, imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or both.
  • All travelers coming from a red or grey list country, as defined by the EU traffic light system, and all other locations outside of Europe, must continue to restrict their movements for 14 days after arriving in Ireland.
  • All travelers coming from a green or orange country  will not be required to restrict their movements on arrival but must adhere to the local public health guidance.
  • Travelers from Great Britain and South Africa must continue to isolate for 14 days, even if they take a second test after arrival.
  • Exemptions are limited to international transport workers, including hauliers, pilots and aviation crew, masters and maritime crew, and members of An Garda Síochána in the course of their duties.
  • Children under six will also be exempt.
  • Passengers who arrive in Ireland solely for the purpose of travelling onward to another country and who do not leave the airport are also not required to provide evidence of a test.
  • If a citizen has a genuine humanitarian emergency requiring urgent travel, they should contact the nearest Embassy or Consulate immediately for advice and consular assistance before commencing their journey.

Analysis & Comments: The Irish government has made this decision as part of their efforts to mitigate the spread of the new variant of COVID-19. Employers should consider that this change may cause delays to intended start dates of their potential employees, if the employment cannot be carried out from home. All travelers arriving to Ireland must also continue to complete a Passenger Locator Form prior to arriving at port of entry in Ireland. If you have employees or potential new hires who may be impacted by the changes described, please contact the Deloitte immigration team to assist.

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