Life in Ireland takes step towards normality as most Covid-19 restrictions lifted

Life in Ireland has taken a significant step back to normality with the vast majority of the restrictions on social and economic activity introduced in response to Covid-19 having been lifted on Saturday.

Following a recommendation from the National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet), which said there was “clear evidence” nationally and internationally that the Omicron variant was not generally leading to severe illness, the Taoiseach said “the emergency is over”.

The move will see the 8pm closing time for the hospitality sector lifted with pubs and restaurants able to trade largely without restrictions. The digital Covid pass is no longer required for entry to hospitality, entertainment and leisure venues.

Live events and sporting events can return to full capacity crowds and guidance advising limits on household visits has been removed. Workers across Ireland can return to offices on a staggered basis from Monday.

Small number in place

Only a small number of restrictions remain in place, including the continued requirement to wear masks in settings such as in shops, schools and on public transport; self-isolation rules; and the use of Covid passes for international travel.

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