The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly TD, has announced his intention to add an additional five States to the list of Designated States. People arriving into Ireland from these States or transiting through them must complete Mandatory Hotel Quarantine.

The decision to add to the list of designated States was approved at a Government meeting earlier this week and the required consultation with other government departments has now taken place. Passengers from these States that arrive in Ireland after 04.00 on Tuesday, 4 May are required to enter quarantine in a designated hotel.

Minister Donnelly said:

The Government continues to advise against all non-essential international travel at this time. Protecting public health remains the key priority of Government. The scenes we are witnessing in India are distressing and a devastating reminder to us all of the severe illness and death COVID-19 can cause. The Government will continue to act to protect the population from Variants of Concern and take decisions that reinforce Ireland’s biosecurity.

The additional countries to be added to the list are: Costa Rica, Georgia, India, Iran, and Mongolia. 

The Minister is also revoking the designation in place for: Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, San Marino, Monaco, Wallis and Futuna Islands, Moldova. The revocations come into effect from today.

All travellers into Ireland from non-designated countries must have a negative pre-departure test and observe ‘Home Quarantine’.


A full list of Designated states is available here.

NOTES to Editor

Countries are designated under the Health Act 1947 by the Minister for Health following consultation with the Minister for Foreign Affairs and across Government as necessary.

An Expert Advisory Group on Travel to the CMO (EAGT) was established on 1 March 2021 to develop a method of risk assessing countries and to consider broader issues of travel and COVID-19. The Group has developed an approach to risk assessments in keeping with guidance of the WHO and ECDC and which is aligned to the legislative framework in place for mandatory quarantine. The approach is reviewed on a regular basis and currently recommends prioritisation of mandatory quarantine as follows:

  • Countries with prevalence or suspected prevalence of known variants of concern/ variants of interest
  • Countries with a very high 14-day incidence (≥500/100,000)
  • Countries with a high 14-day incidence (greater than 2.5 times Ireland’s 14-day incidence but <500/100,000)

Epidemiological data is reviewed, at a minimum, on a weekly basis. Recommendations for addition to the list of Designated States are made every two weeks, and recommendations for revocation of countries as Designated States are made weekly. The Chief Medical Officer considers these recommendations and in turn makes recommendations to the Minister for Health who forms his own opinion with respect to the designation of individual states

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