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Ireland is planning to drop almost all of its restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic beginning October 22 after the country reported that over 90 percent of its population had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

While many countries and cities around the world are going back into lockdowns or are imposing more restrictions like mask mandates and travel bans, Ireland seems to be heading in the opposite direction.


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Reopening from COVID-19

An article by Reuters detailed the country’s phased reopening beginning in September will lead to the eventual lifting of nearly all of the restrictions on October 22. The only restrictions in place will be the mask mandates onboard public transportation and mask mandates in indoor business areas.

Capacity limits for both indoor and outdoor events, as well as vaccination certification to enter bars and restaurants, will be dropped.

The easing of restrictions is largely due to the country’s vaccination rollout. As of September 3, the government of Ireland has reported that over 88 percent of adults over 18 have already been fully vaccinated, while almost 92 percent of its population has at least one dose.

“Because of the effort of our vaccination team and because you have stepped up to the mark and taken the vaccine when it was offered, we are now entering a whole new phase of the pandemic,” Prime Minister Micheal Martin said in an address in late August, when the announcement was first made.

While the country’s vaccination rates have been reaching high levels, so have the country’s positive COVID-19 numbers. In the past 14 days, the country has seen over 21,000 positive cases. It is unlikely that case numbers will go down with the country’s reopening, but the likelihood of serious illness will be lower because many of the individuals who will test positive will be fully vaccinated.

It is unclear whether the country will ease travel restrictions along with the rest of the restrictions being lifted.

Individuals from the United States can travel to Ireland, though the State Department has issued a Level 4: Do Not Travel warning for the country due to its high numbers of COVID-19. Individuals traveling to the country must fill out a Passenger Locator Form and provide proof of full vaccination or recent recovery from COVID-19 to bypass the mandatory 14-day quarantine.

For all of the requirements, please click here.

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