Covid-19 Travel Information and Consulate Services
News28 January 2021
Since 16 March 2020, the Government of Ireland has been recommending against all non-essential international travel to anywhere in the world, including Canada and Ireland.
Irish citizens are free to leave Canada on any scheduled flights from a Canadian airport and transatlantic flights continue to operate, albeit with reduces routes. You should check regularly with your airline’s website for status updates and for any additional information they may require before you can board. We strongly recommend that you do not travel to an airport without a confirmed booking.
As of Saturday, 16 January, passengers arriving into Ireland from all countries, including Canada, are required to show a negative result of a pre-departure PCR COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of arrival in the State. Checks will be made by the Border Management Unit at Dublin Airport and by An Garda Síochána at other points of entry. Mandatory quarantine at a designated facility will be required for passengers who arrive in breach of the pre-departure negative/'not detected' PCR requirement. Children aged six and under are exempt from this requirement.
On 26 January the Government of Ireland announced the introduction of additional, short-term restrictions. These will include mandatory quarantine measures applying to all international arrivals and the suspension of visa-free travel to Ireland (with limited exemptions) for nationals of South Africa and all countries in South America. Updated information on these measures will be made available on the gov.ie website, the website of the Irish Immigration and Naturalisation Service, and on this Department’s country specific travel pages.
Ireland has implemented the EU ‘Traffic Light System’ whereby restrictions are based on the location of the passenger during the 14 days prior to arrival. In general, you are requested to restrict your movements for 14 days if you arrive into Ireland from another country. This applies to all travellers entering the State, including Irish citizens coming home and people with no symptoms. Restricting your movements means avoiding contact with other people and social situations as much as possible. Ireland’s Health Service Executive has provided guidance on how to restrict movements on their website.
Passengers entering Ireland from red regions (which currently includes Canada) can exit quarantine early following receipt of a negative/not-detected result from a Covid-19 PCR test taken a minimum of five days after arrival in Ireland. Test results can take a few days; passengers are requested to continue to restrict their movements until they have the negative result. The PCR COVID-19 test is currently the only test type considered acceptable by public health authorities in Ireland in relation to international travel. Testing provision under Ireland’s framework for international travel will not be provided through the public health system, but will be met by the private commercial sector testing supply and paid for by passengers.
The links below on Cork and Dublin airports websites give details of the current companies providing PCR tests.
The general request to restrict movements does not apply to persons travelling for an essential need or function as defined by Paragraph 19 of the EU Council Recommendation on Travel for an Essential Purpose. It is the responsibility of each individual to determine if their circumstances fall into one of the categories in Paragraph 19 of the EU Council Recommendation on travel for an essential need or function.
For up-to-date information on what to do if you are travelling to Ireland at this time, please see the Irish Government website.
To ensure that this is being observed, all passengers arriving to Ireland from overseas are obliged to complete a mandatory Public Health Passenger Locator Form and to submit it to the relevant authority at their port of entry. Exemptions are in place for providers of essential supply chain services such as hauliers, pilots and maritime staff. Check the Irish Government Advice Page for full information on these requirements. Further advice for people who have recently returned from abroad is available from the HSE.
Canadian Travel Restrictions
Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau announced that, beginning March 18, 2020 at 12:01 a.m. EDT, the Government of Canada will, for air travel specifically:
• Bar foreign nationals from all countries except the United States from entering Canada. The measure would not apply in designated exceptional circumstances, including to air crews, travellers arriving in Canada in transit to a third country, Canadian permanent residents, diplomats, or immediate family members of Canadian citizens.
• Redirect international passenger flight arrivals to four airports: Toronto Pearson International Airport, Vancouver International Airport, Montréal-Trudeau International Airport, and Calgary International Airport.
For more information from the Prime Minister's Statement, please see here.
On 29 January 2021 the Government of Canada announced introducing new accommodation and quarantine measures for incoming interational travellers including a mandatory hotel stay. For more information please see the Government of Canada website.
On For the most up to date information on travel to Canada, please visit the website of the IRCC. We strongly advise you to check with your airline before travel.
Many cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) have been confirmed across Canada.
Please refer to the Government of Canada’s Outbreak Update and the World Health Organisation for latest updates on the outbreak at national level and to our Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland’s official travel advice.
The latest information for the response in British Columbia can be found at the BC Centre for Disease Control website.
Irish Passport Service
The Irish Passport Service has paused operations in line with the move to Level 5 of the Irish Government’s National Framework on Living with COVID-19.
During this period, online passport applications can be submitted but will only be processed when restrictions are moved to Level 4. Paper passport applications will not be processed until restrictions are moved to Level 3.
Please note that all adult and children's passports can now be renewed online as long as it is under 5 years since the previous Irish passport expired. For more information please see the Passport Service website.
The Consulate will continue to provide consular services and assistance to Irish citizens in British Columbia. You can contact us by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by phone (+1 236 521 7300). Our phone lines remain open from 9am to 1pm.
For consular emergencies outside working hours please call the Irish Embassy in Ottawa on +1 613 233 6281 and leave a voicemail. This voicemail is monitored by the Duty Officer. Alternatively, you can call the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade in Dublin on +353 1 408 2000.
Consulate General of Vancouver
28 January 2021