What are the current COVID-19 restrictions in Ireland?

Keep up to date with all the current COVID-19 regulations in Ireland
Written by
illustration of individuals and small groups of people sitting and lying on the grass following covid19 social distancing guidelines

While restrictions have been eased in recent months, Ireland is still living with COVID-19. This means that we will all need to continue to change the things we do in our daily lives in order to reduce the risk of the virus spreading. This is to protect ourselves, our families, and our communities.

The Government has put measures in place in response to COVID-19. As the number of cases rise and fall, these restrictions may change. 

In this article:

What restrictions are currently in place?

Depending on case numbers, the Government may increase or reduce the number of restrictions in place as needed. It’s important to keep up to date with the latest guidance.

Before deciding to take part in any social activity, it is important to take precautions. It can still be possible to get COVID-19 after vaccination, and although your vaccine reduces the risk of serious illness to yourself, you could still infect other vulnerable people. You should continue to self-isolate if you have symptoms of COVID-19.

In many cases, the restrictions that you need to follow will depend on whether or not you are fully vaccinated. You will need an EU Digital COVID Certificate to prove that you are fully vaccinated.

What does it mean to be fully vaccinated?

It is important to remember that you are not considered fully vaccinated until you have received all doses of your vaccine and have waited the necessary waiting period. Once this waiting period has passed, you are considered fully vaccinated. This means that your vaccine is giving you the highest level of protection it can offer. The waiting period is:

  • 14 days after the Janssen vaccine
  • 15 days after the second dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine
  • 7 days after the second dose of the Pfizer Vaccine
  • 14 days after the second dose of the Moderna vaccine

Indoor gatherings

Currently, no more than four households should gather together at any one time. This means if you are having guests, you can have people from a max of three other households over at once (your household will be considered the fourth).

It is best to limit your contacts over the next number of weeks.

Weddings, civil ceremonies, funerals and religious services

Weddings can currently have a maximum of 100 guests. Receptions must end at midnight.

There is no limit on the number of people you can have at funerals and religious services.

Restaurants, pubs and cafes

Restaurants, pubs and cafes are currently required to close at 8pm. This rule will be in place from December 20 2021 until January 30 2022. In addition to this, there are some measures in place:

These venues are all currently open to everyone for outdoor dining where available. To eat or drink indoors, there are certain things you must provide:

  • You must show proof that you are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19 in the past six months
  • Your EU COVID Digital Certificate (DCC) or a HSE vaccination record can be used as proof of vaccination or recovery
  • You also need to have photo identification (such as a passport or driver’s licence) to show that the proof of vaccination or recovery belongs to you
  • If you are visiting Ireland from another country and do not have a DCC or HSE vaccination record, you can use an official vaccination record issued by the country where you were vaccinated or tested for COVID-19
  • One member of your group must give contact details to the cafe, bar or restaurant for contact tracing purposes

Your proof of vaccination/ recovery and identification will be checked at the door of the venue. If you do not have proof of vaccination or recovery, the management can refuse admission

If you are under 18, you do not need proof of vaccination or recovery to dine indoors provided you are there with a fully vaccinated or recovered person.

Other measures:

  • In a pub, cafe or restaurant, you should wear a face covering when you are not at your seat
  • There will be a maximum of six people per table, or 15 if five of these people are children under 12
  • Multiple table bookings are not allowed
  • There are no time limits on sittings
  • You can only eat or drink at a table, not a bar or a counter
  • People can order drinks at a bar, but they must be socially distanced, and must then return to their table

Nightclubs

All nightclubs are currently closed.

Indoor and outdoor events

It is possible to go to events both indoors and outdoors, with some restrictions in place.

From December 20 2021, all indoor event venues must close by 8pm. Attendance is limited to 1000 people, or 50% of the venue’s capacity, whichever is lower. As in restaurants, pubs, cafes and nightclubs, you will be asked to show your EU COVID Digital Certificate (DCC) or a HSE vaccination record to attend indoor events. This will not be required for outdoor events. 

For outdoor events, attendance is limited to 5000 people or 50% of the venue’s capacity, whichever is lower. This includes sporting events.

Cinemas and theatres

Cinemas and theatres must close at 8pm. A vaccine cert is required to attend a cinema or a theatre. This means:

  • You must show proof that you are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19 in the past six months
  • Your EU COVID Digital Certificate (DCC) or a HSE vaccination record can be used as proof of vaccination or recovery
  • You also need to have photo identification (such as a passport or driver’s licence) to show that the proof of vaccination or recovery belongs to you.
  • If you are visiting Ireland from another country and do not have a DCC or HSE vaccination record, you can use an official vaccination record issued by the country where you were vaccinated or tested for COVID-19
  • One member of your group must give contact details to the cafe, bar or restaurant for contact tracing purposes

Your proof of vaccination/ recovery and identification will be checked at the door of the venue. If you do not have proof of vaccination or recovery, the management can refuse admission

If you are under 18, you do not need proof of vaccination or recovery to dine indoors provided you are there with a fully vaccinated or recovered person.

Indoor training and the gym

Organised indoor group activities like sport and fitness activities can take place with no restrictions on numbers. However, if the activity involves vaccinated and unvaccinated people, they should be separated into pods of six.

You need to have proof of vaccination or recovery to go to a gym or leisure centre. You do not need one to access a swimming pool in a gym or leisure centre, or to go to a standalone swimming pool.

It is important to continue to take health precautions such as sanitising your hands regularly, wearing a mask in public areas and self-isolating if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

Outdoor training

There are no restrictions on outdoor group activities like training. 

Can I work from my office?

Everyone is asked to work form home unless it is necessary to attend your workplace in person.

Do I still have to wear a face mask?

Wearing a face mask is currently mandatory in certain places. Face masks can help to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

When do I need to wear a face mask?

In Ireland, it is currently mandatory to wear a face mask in shops and when attending services like the hairdresser, barber, salons, cinema, libraries, theatres, bookies, and other retail services. 

It is also mandatory to wear a face mask on public transport. Refusing to wear a face mask in any of these places could lead to a fine or imprisonment.

Children aged nine years and older are being asked to wear masks on public transport, in shops, and in other indoor public spaces. Children in third class and above are also being asked to wear face masks while in school.

It is not required to wear masks in indoor private settings or outdoors, but it is advised to wear one if you are visiting the home of someone who is vulnerable to COVID-19 or over. theage of 70. Find out more about the rules around face masks in Ireland.

Can I travel?

There are currently no limits on travelling within Ireland. If you wish to travel overseas, there are certain measures in place.

Are hotels open?

There are currently no limits on travelling within Ireland, and hotels and other forms of accommodation are open provided there are protective measures in place. 

Can I go abroad?

The rules and restrictions in place surrounding travel abroad can change depending on the current case numbers in different areas or the emergence of new variants. It’s important to keep up to date with the latest measures if you are planning on travelling abroad.

Find out about the current measures in place for travelling here.

Can I take public transport?

Public transport is operating at 100% capacity but you will need to wear a face covering.

Related articles
Skip to content