Update: Travelling to the USA from Ireland (September 2021)
News23 September 2021
United States of America (USA)
Still current at: 23 September 2021
Updated: 20 September 2021
General COVID-19 Travel Advisory in Operation
For the latest update please read the General COVID-19 Travel Advisory >
High Degree of Caution
Security Status Last Updated: 26 July 2021
Latest Travel Alert
COVID-19 is still a threat, but with continued public health measures, vaccination and testing, it will be possible to travel internationally. You will need to plan your travel carefully and there are risks.
Department of Foreign Affairs services and practical supports to all Irish Citizens travelling abroad can be found on Travel-dfa.ie
Travel to the United States
As of 16 March 2020, with limited exception (detailed below), non-US nationals or permanent residents have not been permitted to travel to the US if they have been in Ireland, the UK, the Schengen zone, Iran, Brazil, or China during the previous 14 days. On 20 September 2021, the White House announced that travel to the US will resume for fully vaccinated passengers in early November. Details of this resumption have yet to be confirmed. Those planning to travel are advised to monitor the websites of the US Embassy in Dublin and the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention for further updates.
At present, US citizens and permanent residents, certain specified close family members of same and certain other limited categories of visas holders (such as UN staff and diplomats) are exempt from these restrictions and can still enter the US, subject to normal requirements. Further details are on the website of the US Embassy in Dublin.
Entry for Green Card and Current Visa Holders (including Student Visas)
The US authorities have resumed the issuance and renewal of Permanent Resident Cards (often called 'Green Cards'). Existing visas remain valid as long as the holder remains within the US. Current visa holders based in the US wishing to travel to Ireland or any other country covered by the Presidential Proclamation are strongly advised to check before they travel as to whether they would need an exception to re-enter the US. The US authorities only consider applications for these once you have left the US, so applying before travel is not possible.
Students travelling from Ireland (and the UK and Schengen Area) with valid F-1 and M-1 visas do not need to seek a humanitarian exception to travel.
New Visas and Humanitarian Exceptions
The US authorities are only providing emergency and mission-critical visa services at present and visa appointments remain limited. If you have an urgent need to travel, you can contact the US Embassy in Dublin to ascertain if you might qualify for an economic interest, humanitarian, or other exception. However, the criteria for these exceptions are very strict and you should be ready to provide as much information as possible to support your application if you apply for one.
Testing & Quarantine Requirements
All passengers aged 2 and above travelling internationally to the US are required to provide evidence of a negative pre-departure test result (NAAT or antigen) taken no more than three (3) calendar days prior to travel or documentation from a licensed health care provider / public health official of having recovered from COVID-19 in the 90 days preceding travel.
You can find the full announcement on the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention website.
The Center for Disease Control also require international arrivals to the US to take a COVID-19 test (NAAT or antigen) 3-5 days after arrival. Persons not fully vaccinated are further required to quarantine for at least seven days, regardless of a negative test result.
If you are travelling domestically within the US, individual states and territories have their own quarantine requirements. A full list of local quarantine requirements is available on the CDC website. You should check the list frequently as it is likely to change, sometimes daily, as rates of COVID-19 transmission increase or decrease.
Currently, you cannot enter or transit the US if you have been in Ireland, the UK, the Schengen area, Iran, Brazil, China, or South Africa within the previous 14 days. For further information, please check the advice from US Customs and Border Protection website. Those transiting to the US from outside these areas will need to get a visa or an Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA) visa waiver. You should consult the US State Department website to determine which you will need. US citizens and permanent residents of the USA, certain specified close family members and certain other limited categories of visa holders (such as UN staff and diplomats) are exempt. They will still be able to enter the USA, subject to normal entry requirements. As of 26 January 2021, all passengers transiting the USA by air will need to show either a negative pre-departure test result (NAAT or antigen), or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 provided by a licensed health care provider or public health official.
Travel to Ireland
Up to date information on travelling to Ireland can be found on gov.ie or on the Embassy's website here. For travel within Europe please see Re-open EU.