Despite no longer needing a Covid cert to gain entry to pubs or restaurants in Ireland, new rules surrounding certs and international travel will come into effect next week.
Here's everything you need to know:
Essentially, there’s an expiry date being put on vaccination certs issued after primary vaccination doses.
From February 1, vaccine certs received after you completed your primary vaccination series (your single-dose Johnson & Johnson or first two doses of AstraZeneca, Pfizer, or Moderna) won’t be accepted when travelling to the EU if it’s been more than nine months since you completed your primary vaccination series.
This doesn’t mean that you will need a booster dose to travel from February onwards, but as most people completed their primary vaccination course in July, the cert you got then will become invalid around mid-March.
If you’ve received your new Digital COVID Certificate (DCC) after your booster dose, these vaccine certificates are not time-limited and you can travel freely using it.
The Department of Health is advising to first check your email, and to request an updated DCC online if you haven’t received one.
If you got your booster from a GP or pharmacy, the department say it may take some time between when you receive your booster and when the data is uploaded to the Covax system to issue your booster certificate.
The Department of Health has said that it's issued almost 2.1m new DCCs since the process started on January 6.
Over 2.6 million people have received a booster dose to date, meaning over half a million people are still waiting on their updated DCCs.
If it’s been more than nine months since you had your previous dose (before the booster), your original vaccine cert won’t be accepted for EU travel.
Those travelling overseas are urged to check the European Union travel guidelines.
You must have recovered from Covid-19 in the past six months to qualify for a new DCC.
You can request the DCC 11 days after your positive test, though if you received a positive PCR test result in a testing centre you should be automatically issued one.
Your recovery certificate will remain valid for 180 days (six months) after the day you tested positive, and you can get your booster three months from the day you tested positive.
If you were unable to receive a PCR to confirm you had Covid-19, you will need to get a RT-PCR at a private testing centre before traveling.
“EU rules stipulate that certificates of recovery can only be issued following a positive NAAT (nucleic acid amplification test) such as RT-PCR test,” the Department of Health states.
RT-PCR, or reverse transcription PCR, can be carried out by private companies in Ireland and these certs can only be used for international travel.
From January 22, vaccination or recovery certificates are no longer needed to access hospitality or indoor activities.
Requirement of a vaccination or recovery certificate for international travel will be needed until at least February 28.