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Travel fears Government and Nphet clash over new airport testing plans


Photo: Gerry Mooney

Photo: Gerry Mooney

Photo: Gerry Mooney

Travellers flying into Ireland will have to produce a negative Covid-19 test on arrival, under new plans being considered by the Government.

Those who produce a negative laboratory test will avoid any quarantine period on arrival, but will still have to adhere to local regulations linked to the living with the coronavirus plan.

There is also a debate in government over whether rapid testing can be used for travellers arriving without a negative test.

The National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) have concerns about using rapid testing facilities for checking people arriving in Ireland.

However, consideration is being given to allowing people take an antigen test when they land and then restrict their movements for a period of time.


The Government is eager to make travel into Ireland as easy and safe as possible, in part to boost the tourism industry.

This could see the quarantine period for people arriving in Ireland without a negative test reducing to between four or seven days while they await the outcome of rapid Covid tests.

Ireland, along with the other EU members states, have signed up to a new traffic lights system.

People from countries with 25 new cases per 100,000 people over a two-week period, will be on the green list and free to travel into Ireland with any restrictions.

Travellers from amber, red or grey countries may have to undergo Covid tests when they arrive in Ireland and also self-isolate for a period of time.

Transport Minister Eamon Ryan said he will make a decision on how to implement the EU’s new system for international travel next Tuesday.

“The goal is to give airlines and the travelling public certainty as to what they need to do to be able to travel,” he told the Dáil.