EU Digital Covid Certificate issued from today: Where you get it, how you get it and how it works
Here's everything you need to know ahead of the 19 July rollout.
Where and when can you get your EU Digital Pass?
The EU Digital Covid Certificate looks set to be issued from today to around 1.9 million people in Ireland who have been fully vaccinated ahead of the reopening of international travel on 19 July.
People across Ireland who are fully vaccinated are set to begin receiving their Covid passes via email or letter from today.
People who received their Covid-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre will get their pass sent via email. Those who got their jab at a pharmacy or GP clinic, meanwhile, will receive a letter with a QR code which can then be scanned to a smartphone.
Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan confirmed the news last week, saying: “Next week they’ll start to be issued by email and by post and for everyone that needs it for international travel before 19 July.”
Who can get one?
Anybody who has received both doses of their Covid-19 vaccine will be able to avail of the EU Digital Certificate. There will also be an option for people to receive a pass upon showing recent negative Covid-19 PCR tests, or for those who can prove they have recently recovered from the virus.
How will they work?
The system will see an EU Digital Covid Certificate sent to those who meet the necessary requirements for the pass. The pass will then be downloadable as a QR code on any smartphone and will have to be presented alongside your boarding pass when travelling internationally after 19 July.
What date will they be operational from?
While the pass came into effect throughout Europe last week, it won't be implemented in Ireland until 19 July due to delays caused by the HSE cyber attack.
What countries will it apply to?
From 19 July, Ireland will fall in line with the majority of EU states and allow people to travel within the EU and EEA (the EU, plus Iceland, Norway and Lichtenstein).
What does it mean for travel to the UK?
While the UK will not be part of the EU Digital Pass system since it is no longer an EU member state, travel to Ireland from Britain will be “much easier” from 19 July as people who are fully vaccinated will no longer have to quarantine at home, Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan confirmed last Wednesday.
The date coincides with the implementation of the EU Digital Covid Certificate as Ryan has also said that the rules for people travelling here from Britain will be eased on 19 July.
As of right now, a majority of people returning from travel to the UK must spend 14 days quarantining at an address they specify on a passenger locator form. However, this quarantine system is likely to soon be scrapped.
Ryan said: “For others who don’t have the vaccination they will have to continue to abide by the home quarantine and we will continue to review that.
“We did strengthen regulations in recent weeks because of concern about the Delta variant. Because that’s here now as well as in the UK it’s not as significant. That was done to try and delay and hold back the arrival of the Delta variant here.
“So I think travel with the UK will become much easier particularly for those who are vaccinated from the 19th."
Will it be used domestically?
The Cabinet will sign off on plans this afternoon to reopen indoor hospitality in bars and restaurants, according to RTÉ News.
The meeting comes following talks between government and the hospitality sector which took place over the weekend as the government is aiming to have legislation, which will allow vaccinated people and under 18s to eat and drink indoors at restaurants and pubs, passed by the Dáil and Seanad this week.
This "Covid pass" could see the use of the EU Digital Cert both domestically as well as internationally as Leo Varadkar has said there are concerns over forgery if the current cards that people receive after their vaccines are used as proof when accessing indoor dining.