Get travel and medical insurance
- Normal precautions
- High degree of caution
- Avoid non-essential travel
- Do not travel
- Safety and Security
- Local Laws and Customs
- Additional Information
- Embassy Contact
Ireland has adopted the EU Recommendation on a coordinated approach to travel restrictions in the context of COVID-19, known as the EU traffic lights approach. Based on this, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) will publish a combined indicator map each week which will show COVID-19 risk levels across the EU and EEA. Regions will be green, orange, red or grey, on the basis of agreed criteria. In line with the EU Recommendation, there will be no entry restrictions on passengers travelling from green regions. Further information is available on the Re-Open Europa website.
Our TravelWise app has been suspended to take account of the new EU system. We apologise for this inconvenience. Updated information will continue to be provided on this website.
Information about the new EU Recommendation (‘traffic lights’ system) which applies to EU / EEA countries is available here. Anyone considering travel to Hungary should check the latest information from the local authorities regarding requirements for international passengers arriving in the country.
Hungary has closed its border to all foreign nationals, including Irish nationals, for an indefinite period due to the COVID 19 pandemic. The new rules allow for certain exemptions.
Under the new rules, only Hungarian nationals, non-Hungarian nationals who are permanently resident in Hungary or non-Hungarian nationals who have permission to remain longer than 90 days, are allowed entry into the country.
Foreign nationals, including Irish nationals, can enter Hungary for only the following specific justifiable reasons:
a) the non-Hungarian national is taking part in a Hungarian court procedure;
b) the non-Hungarian national is carrying out business or other activity justified by a letter of invitation issued by a central government body, an individual regulatory body, or an autonomous state body;
c) the non-Hungarian national is receiving health care service, certified by a document issued by the health care institution;
d) the non-Hungarian national is carrying out study or exam duty required by an educational institution, certified by a document issued by the educational institution;
e) the non-Hungarian national is taking part in cargo related passenger traffic if the aim of the travel is either to get to the cargo transport’s point of departure, or to get home after carrying out such cargo transport duty, if certified by a document issued by the employer;
f) the non-Hungarian national’s participation in family events (wedding, funeral, christening);
g) the non-Hungarian national is taking care of a relative;
h) the non-Hungarian national is taking part in an international sports-, cultural or religious event of a special significance;
i) the non-Hungarian national intends to enter the country for other justifiable reasons.
Foreign nationals wishing to enter Hungary for the reasons listed above must apply for an exemption online at https://ugyintezes.police.hu/en/home . The form, which should be completed in advance of traveling, can be completed in English or Hungarian.
Please note that on entering, individuals must agree to undergo a medical examination (temperature check). In case a suspicion of COVID-19 infection arises during the health examination, the individual will be refused entry.
All those entering Hungary (unless transiting) must agree to enter mandatory, legally enforceable 10-day quarantine. If the person has no place of residency in Hungary, they must enter a government designated place of quarantine.
The quarantined individual may request from the authorities’ permission to have two PCR tests conducted within 5 days of arrival, which must be taken 48 hours apart. If the two PCR tests are negative, the authorities can exempt the individual from their quarantine obligation. The cost of the PCR tests must be met by the individual.
Public health guidelines continue to apply for anyone arriving in Ireland from a non-green region. For information on arriving in Ireland from abroad, please visit the website of the Irish Government (www.gov.ie) or the Health Service Executive (HSE) www.hse.ie
High Degree of Caution
Security Status Last Updated: 21 October 2020 to take effect from 00.00 on 22 October 2020
Latest Travel Alert
Restrictions are in place throughout Hungary, including a social distancing rule of 1.5 m and the wearing of facemasks, and you are advised to follow the guidance of national and local authorities. For advice, the Hungarian Government has a 24-hour, free, English-speaking help-line: +36 80 277 455 or +36 80 277 456.
Additional advice and information on COVID-19 can be found via the following links:
Hungarian Government Advice on COVID 19 (Hungarian & English)
General Travel Advice
Given recent terrorist attacks in European cities, Irish citizens are advised to follow the advice of police and local authorities and to exercise increased vigilance, especially if attending large public gatherings or other crowded locations. Attacks could occur at any time and could target tourist attractions, restaurants, transport hubs or other public areas.
Hungary is maintaining a medium-level (class 3) terror alert in place in the country, although no direct threats of terrorism have been reported. You should always be aware of your surroundings, and follow any instructions from the police (Rendörség) or security services.
When travelling within Hungary and to/from neighbouring countries, including Schengen member states, please be aware of the likelihood of more frequent ID checks. Cross border land routes (including trains) are likely to be subject to delays whilst rigorous checking of travel documents takes place, please bear this in mind when making travel plans.
The best help is often close at hand so if you have problems, try talking to your local contacts, tour operator representative or hotel management.
You can contact the emergency services in Hungary by dialling 112. Specific emergency numbers are:
- Fire Department: 105
- Ambulance: 104
Our tips for Safe Travels:
- Purchase comprehensive travel insurance which covers all your intended activities.
- Get a European Health Insurance Card
- Register your details with us so that we can contact you quickly if there’s an unforeseen crisis like a natural disaster or a family emergency.
- Follow us on twitter @dfatravelwise for the latest travel updates.
- Read our ‘Know Before You Go’ guide.
Safety and Security
Safety and Security
Safety and security
Although the threat from terrorism in Hungary is low, there is still a global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks, which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by tourists and expatriates.
Most of Hungary has a moderate rate of crime. However, you should be aware that in and around Budapest in busy tourist spots there is a much higher risk of pickpocketing and muggings. Budapest's famous ruin bars are particularly popular with tourists. The months of May – September are especially busy with interrailing and other travellers. There have been reports of petty crime and intimidation from some bar staff. We advise you to be vigilant and stick with a group where possible.
We recommend the following basic precautions:
- Keep your passport in a secure and safe place while travelling. Leave a copy of your passport (and travel and insurance documents) with family or friends at home
- Keep a close eye on your personal belongings and hold on to them in busy areas.
- Be vigilant about petty crime: many of the cases we encounter involve stolen passports or wallets.
- Always use a registered taxi provider. All taxis in Budapest are yellow and the cars will have a company logo/sticker on the door. Where possible call a taxi rather than hailing one on the street. Confirm the destination with the driver and be careful when paying as Hungarian notes come in a range of denominations.
- Don't carry your credit card, travel tickets and money together - leave spare cash and valuables in a safe place.
If you're a victim of a crime while in Hungary, report it to the local police immediately. The number for emergency services is 112. Ask a Hungarian to assist you if you are having language difficulties with the operator. At the police station, you can request an interpreter to make a police report in English. And you can contact us at the Irish Embassy in Budapest if you need help.
If you’re planning to drive in Hungary, be aware it’s compulsory to carry your passport, international driving license and third party insurance with you when driving.
If you’re hiring a vehicle, we advise you not to hand over your passport as a form of security. If you’re allowing your passport to be photocopied, keep it in your sight at all times.
Check that you have adequate insurance and read the small print of the vehicle hire contract (particularly any waiver that will come into effect if the vehicle is damaged).
Local Laws and Customs
Local Laws and Customs
Local laws and customs
Remember, the local laws apply to you as a visitor and it is your responsibility to follow them. Be sensitive to local customs, traditions and practices as your behaviour may be seen as improper, hostile or even illegal.
Illegal drug use (no matter what the drug) carries stiff penalties, including fines and long prison terms.
Entry requirements (visa/passport)
Holders of a valid Irish passport are granted visa-free travel to Hungary on condition that their visit does not exceed the period of 90 days. For a stay exceeding that period, a residence permit is required.
Entry Requirements for Pets
The requirements are listed on the below sites:
Irish citizens don’t require vaccinations when travelling to Hungary. However, you should seek medical advice about inoculations to prevent tick-related medical problems (such as tick-borne encephalitis), particularly if you expect to be visiting lakes or wooded areas.
English Speaking Professionals
You may need to contact an English speaking lawyer or doctor during your time in Hungary. For your convenience the Embassy has drawn up a list of English speaking professionals, which you may find useful. Inclusion on these lists should not be taken as a recommendation by the Embassy.
24 hour medical services
In Buda: II dstr. Ganz str. 13.
XII. dstr. Diósárok u. 1-3.
In Pest: V. Dstr. Semmelweis u.14.
Tel: 00-36-1-311- 6816
After hours pediatric care
In Buda: Henger u. 1.
Tel: 00-36-1-212- 5979
In Pest: Gyöngyössi u. 29.
Tel: 00-36-1-320- 8403
24 hour pharmacies:
XII. Dstr. Alkotás út 1/b.
V.dstr. Teréz krt. 41.
For consular emergencies outside working hours please call the Embassy on +36 1301 4960 and leave a voicemail which is monitored by the Duty Officer.
Embassy of Ireland
Szabadsag ter 7.
Bank Center, Platina Tower 2, VI. Floor
Monday to Friday 09.30 - 12.30 and 14.30 - 16.30
Get travel and medical insurance
Before travelling, the Department strongly recommends that you obtain comprehensive travel insurance which will cover all overseas medical costs, including medical repatriation/evacuation, repatriation of remains and legal costs. You should check any exclusions and, in particular, that your policy covers you for the activities you want to undertake.