Can I visit Ireland in mid-October with any covid issues?
September 21, 2021 8:21 AM   Subscribe

I'm a vaccinated American who would like to vacation in Ireland in mid-October — will I be able to travel around the country without many issues, re: covid restrictions?

When I travel I definitely try to speak with people, go to bars and restaurants, ride trains and buses... but I know there have been breakthrough covid cases, too. I haven't had a real vacation in like two years at this point, so I'd really like to do this. Would love to hear from someone (esp an Irish person) about what I can expect.
posted by deern the headlice to Travel & Transportation around Ireland (12 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
FWIW, the forum at Rick Steves's web site is pretty active: https://www.ricksteves.com/travel-forum

Check out the Ireland-specific one, but also Trip Reports.
posted by wenestvedt at 8:30 AM on September 21, 2021 [2 favorites]


Well, this is what the CDC says:
COVID-19 in Ireland
Level 4: Very High Level of COVID-19 in Ireland
Key Information for Travelers to Ireland:
Avoid travel to Ireland.
If you must travel to Ireland, make sure you are fully vaccinated before travel.
Because of the current situation in Ireland, even fully vaccinated travelers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants.
Travelers should follow recommendations or requirements in Ireland, including wearing a mask and staying 6 feet apart from others.
posted by SageTrail at 8:33 AM on September 21, 2021 [1 favorite]


I was just very, very briefly in Ireland and Northern Ireland. 1., who knows how things will be in three weeks? 2. There was significant chaos at the airport vis-a-vis what test who took and when (no more than 72 hours before flying, no less than I'm not sure - it was not clear and the airline personnel didn't seem so clear on it either.) 3. If you can get tickets with travelers insurance that will re-imburse you if the situation is too precarious, go for it. Right now the rates of infection are (roughly, depending on where you are coming from) about equivalent with USA. 4. When I looked into whether I would have to report and/or self quarantine (despite being vaccinated) specifically the 'Borderlands' area was mentioned as having a high rate of infection (and required travelers who had stayed there longer than 24 hours to self-quarantine for five days with proof of a neg test after that time.)
posted by From Bklyn at 8:40 AM on September 21, 2021


You might also want to take a look at THIS link to the US Embassy in Ireland.
posted by SageTrail at 8:42 AM on September 21, 2021


Irish government's covid pages including descriptions of current measures
posted by koahiatamadl at 8:55 AM on September 21, 2021


Hi from Ireland. You can travel freely around the country, you will need to wear a mask entering anywhere, but nearly everything is open except theatre. We have the highest adult vaccination rate in Europe at 90%+. Cases per 100K population is under 500 and declining. My understanding is that in the US, it's 5000 but I just looked that up, I haven't been paying attention.

You will need a PCR administered 72 hours before you arrive, and proof of a negative result. By the time you get here, I don't think you will need to show proof of vaccine to dine indoors but you do now. We have a national tracker app. It's optional but use it!
posted by DarlingBri at 10:01 AM on September 21, 2021 [9 favorites]


I got my COVID numbers data from the NYTimes website. I am neither clever enough right now, nor patient enough to go sifting through to find the discrepancy between these two sets of numbers, but my experience was as DarlingBri says - all shops are open, masks everywhere, and a generally un conflicted mood.
posted by From Bklyn at 10:55 AM on September 21, 2021 [1 favorite]


As DarlingBri says, it's pretty much back to normal, bar using masks, spacing limits, table service only in bars and so on. So it should be fine, but one thing to add is thatI was in a restaurant recently with a vaccinated American friend. Showing a screenshot on a phone of a non-EU standard certificate took some convincing, and additional ID. So maybe bring a few printouts of your proof of vaccination.
posted by Boobus Tuber at 11:37 AM on September 21, 2021


Failte! from the dead live centre of Ireland. Basically what DarlingBri said above. A friend from Michigan came on business to Ireland in July and was able to negotiate the covid-requirements without bother: stayed in 2 hotels and a local AirBnB. My lived experience is that restrictions are easing up. The college where I used to work is switching back to full capacity on-campus after a year of remote teaching with 'token' half-capacity labs. They are mitigating spread with masks, ventilation, hand-san and lots of paper-towels. The next level of opening is scheduled for 22nd October just in time for the Cork Jazz Festival - head of govt comes from Cork. You can finger the pulse on RTE-covid, today "There have been 1,154 new cases of Covid-19 reported by the Department of Health. The Department has also said there are 297 people in hospital with Covid-19, an increase of 19 since yesterday. 63 of these patients are being treated in intensive care units". That's no deaths and ICU beds far from being overwhelmed: those being the concerns that started the pandemic restrictions. My MI pal rented a car, but railways and inter-city buses are effectively back to full seats. Hope it works out for you, Ireland still welcomes tourist dollars.
posted by BobTheScientist at 11:38 AM on September 21, 2021 [2 favorites]


There have been 1,154 new cases of Covid-19 reported by the Department of Health. The Department has also said there are 297 people in hospital with Covid-19, an increase of 19 since yesterday. 63 of these patients are being treated in intensive care units

I believe that the population of Ireland is like five million, if you want to scale those numbers for your own state/city/whatever. E.g., Rhode Island has one million residents, and the Seattle metro area population has about four million, per Wikipedia.
posted by wenestvedt at 11:49 AM on September 21, 2021


It’ll depend on your timing but I’ve heard from people who are travelling within Ireland and from a B&B owner that there’s huge demand for all accommodation types - this may ease with schools being back but it’s something to check
posted by carbide at 11:59 AM on September 21, 2021


My understanding is that in the US, it's 5000 but I just looked that up, I haven't been paying attention.

That's the all-time case rate. Apparently Ireland uses a 14-day rate and the CDC has maddeningly moved to a 7-day rate, but the 7-day rate is 276 today and 296 a week ago, so something around 600 cases. Worse than Ireland (of course it is) but not 10x worse.
posted by Special Agent Dale Cooper at 3:03 PM on September 21, 2021 [3 favorites]


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