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COVID-19: Updates on Quarantine, Travel and Visa Renewals in Ireland

COVID-19: Updates on Quarantine, Travel and Visa Renewals in Ireland

As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to persist in its fourth month since the global outbreak begun, the State has issued updated guidance for travellers entering the State and for visa nationals.  

If you are concerned about overstaying your Irish visa or need advice on your next steps, contact the Ireland team of the Immigration Advice Service today on (+353) 061 518 025 to see how our expert lawyers can help you.

 

Travel Restrictions Persist in Ireland

Ireland’s Prime Minister, Leo Varadkar, has stated that he believes it could take months for Ireland and the EU to return to some degree of normality as COVID-19 travel restrictions continue. 

Many across the Republic of Ireland have speculated that travel restrictions will be lifted in a matter of weeks.  

Just last week, the State entered its first phase of exiting lockdown and lifting COVID-19 restrictions. The first phase includes many returning to work and some schools opening. Garden centres, hardware stores, opticians, repair shops, laundrettes and electrical stores also face reopening with up to four people who are not from the same household now allowed to meet outdoors. 

However, there is no such movement to lift stringent travel restrictions across the European Union and Ireland. And the PM speculates restrictions could continue for further months.

Ireland Prime Minister
Ireland’s Prime Minister claims COVID-19 travel restrictions will not lift in the forthcoming weeks. [Image: PA Media/BBC.]

There is no such movement to lift stringent travel restrictions across the European Union and Ireland

According to Varadkar, the State is considering heightening public health standards for international arrivals.  

He said: “While it is our policy to resume normal travel for business, leisure, study and visits to friends and relatives (around the EU) as soon as it is safe to do so… It will be months, not weeks before this is possible.” 

 

14-Day Quarantine  

The State has further outlined plans to continue mandatory quarantine measures for all travellers and migrants entering through Ireland’s ports and airports.  

Varadkar said: “We’re going to do our best to get it right so that the Common Travel Area is protected, but also so that we can introduce and enforce that 14-day quarantine on people coming into our ports and airports. The position is that anyone arriving into our ports and airports will be required to quarantine for 14 days.” 

“The position is that anyone arriving into our ports and airports will be required to quarantine for 14 days.”

Impact on Visa Nationals 

It is important to note that Ireland remains affiliated with the European Union and the Common Travel Area with the UK. What this means is that the State has its own immigration and visa policies which have been affected by the Coronavirus restrictions, but UK citizens and EU nationals should benefit from a streamlined entry system. For example, Irish nationals do not need a visa to emigrate to the UK and vice versa, but both may need to self-isolate and endure quarantine for 14 days when travelling across the Common Travel Area.

New guidance has since been issued for those requiring a visa or Irish Residence Permit (IRP).

travel to Ireland amid COVID-19
Travel to and from Ireland will continue to be restricted, but there is some relief for visa nationals. [Image: Marcus Zymmer.]

All visa and entry permissions that are due to expire in Ireland between 20 May to 20 July have further been automatically renewed

Although all local Registration Offices remains closed, including Burgh Quay, people who have valid permission to remain in Ireland but who need an Irish Residence Permit card are able to write to the Registration Office electronically to receive a letter confirming their permission to remain in the State. Once the Registration Office reopens, people seeking to register in Ireland for the first time will be given priority access. Others who have had previous appointments cancelled or delayed will have their appointments rescheduled automatically.

This includes: 

In addition, all visa and entry permissions that are due to expire in Ireland between 20 May to 20 July have further been automatically renewed by the Minister of Justice for another 2 months.

If you are concerned that COVID-19 could jeopardise your immigration status or valid entry permission, contact us today on (+353) 061 518 025.