Irish people urged to wait until government announcement before booking foreign holidays this summer
Airline websites could be very busy this evening if this advice is heeded.
The Irish public has been urged to wait until a government announcement on the return of international travel before booking foreign holidays later this summer.
The latest update on the reopening of society and the easing of Covid restrictions is due today (28 May), following a briefing to government by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) and a meeting of the Cabinet sub-committee on Covid-19 on Thursday.
Areas such as guidelines on indoor and outdoor dining and the return of crowds to indoor and outdoor events in the coming months are set to be addressed in the announcement, as is the return of international travel.
Early speculation suggests that a return to international travel has been pencilled in for 19 July, following the implementation of the EU Digital Green Certificate earlier that month, which all members states will have six weeks to implement.
Despite the speculation about the return of international travel in July, Michael McGrath, Minister for Public Expenditure, urged Irish people considering booking foreign holidays after that date to wait until confirmation arrives in the government announcement later today.
Asked on Prime Time on RTÉ on Thursday night if people thinking of booking a foreign holiday in August should go ahead and do it, McGrath responded: “Well I wouldn’t advise people to book right now.
“I think they should wait until the government makes its announcement, which will be tomorrow, and the government will lay out a timetable and a plan for a return to international travel within the context of the EU Digital Covid Certificate.
“We also have decisions to make in terms of the management of the common travel area and, of course, our travel relationship with other, non-EU countries, such as the United States and so, all of that will be laid out by government tomorrow.”
Elaborating on the EU Digital Green Certificate specifically, McGrath said: “In relation to international travel, Ireland is very much a part of the EU Digital Covid Certificate and, as you know, there is now agreement between European parliament and the council representing member states.
“The regulation will come into effect at the end of June, the very beginning of July and countries will have a transition period if they choose to use it and if they need it in order to implement that system.
“We want to see a return of international travel as soon as it is possible and as soon as it is safe to do so, so we are taking on board the health advice from the Department of Health in relation to that issue, but I think there is a growing sense of confidence that we can see a return to international travel within the confines of those arrangements in the month of July.”
“Ireland will be ready,” McGrath added.