What are the current COVID-19 restrictions in Ireland?

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

Restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Ireland have been eased, but that does not mean the virus has gone away. It is especially important to self-isolate and take a test if you have symptoms of COVID-19.

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.

In this article:

What restrictions have been removed?

In January 2022, almost all COVID-19 restrictions in Ireland were lifted.

This includes:

  • No more limits on household visits
  • Early closing time for restaurants and bars removed
  • Limits removed on the number of people who can attend indoor and outdoor events
  • No more restrictions on nightclubs
  • You no longer need a Digital COVID Cert to enter certain businesses like restaurants, pubs and cinemas or theatres

Return to the office

A phased return to the office has begun on 24 January. This means employers can begin gradually bringing employees back into the office.

Do I have to return to the office?

Many employers have introduced a ‘hybrid’ system that allows employees to opt for a mix of working from home and working from the office. Others have allowed employees to remain fully remote. However, some employers may ask employees to return to the office full-time.

If your contract lists a specific location where you are expected to work (for example, the address of the office building), then the employer has a right to ask you to return to the office and work from there.

The government is currently developing new legislation that will give workers the right to request a remote or hybrid arrangement in work, but it will take time for this to become law.

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.

Rules around face masks will remain in place until February 28th, 2022.

When do I need to wear a face mask?

In Ireland, it is mandatory to wear a face covering (that covers your nose and mouth) in enclosed public places including on public transport, in shops, banks, airports, libraries and museums and in services such as hairdressers, barbers etc.

  • On public transport
  • In shops and shopping centres
  • Libraries
  • Cinemas and cinema complexes
  • Theatres
  • Concert halls
  • Bingo halls
  • Museums
  • Services such as hairdressers, nail care/styling, tattoo or piercings
  • Travel Agents
  • Laundries/Dry Cleaners
  • Betting shops 
  • Banks, credit unions and post offices
  • Airports and ports

If you have trouble breathing, you are unable to remove the mask by yourself, or people with special needs who feel upset or uncomfortable when wearing a mask can wear a plastic visor or face shield instead, but otherwise a cloth face covering that covers your nose and mouth must be worn.

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 the age 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.

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.

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