Ryanair has also called on the Irish government to lift travel restrictions for travel to and from the UK and the EU, labelling mandatory hotel quarantine as “unique and failed.”
In a statement released this morning, May 14, it said that all travel restrictions should be removed from the end of May, saying that there were less than 100 patients in Irish hospitals suffering the Covid-19 virus and that all of Ireland’s high-risk groups (the elderly, health service, nursing homes, etc.) have now been vaccinated, eliminating any Covid risk of our hospitals and health service being overwhelmed.
It also pointed out that first dose vaccination rates in the EU are now approaching 40 per cent of all adults, while in the UK up to 60 per cent of the adult population has received its first dose.
It also highlights an inconsistency in the restrictions for travel to and from the UK: “UK visitors that fly to Ireland are still required to quarantine for 14 days, when visitors from Northern Ireland can drive across the border with no restrictions whatsoever, and Irish citizens can travel to the UK without any quarantine.”
Ryanair’s CEO Eddie Wilson said: “Thanks to the success of the UK’s vaccine program, there is no justification for requiring visitors to Ireland from the UK (our major visitor market) to quarantine. The vast majority of the UK adult population have now received their first dose vaccination, and therefore pose no threat or risk to Ireland’s hospitals or health service. Equally as Ireland and other EU countries vaccine programs exceed 33% (with most of the high-risk groups now fully vaccinated) and with most of Europe on track to vaccinate 80% of its adult population with first dose vaccines by the end of June, there is no need or requirement for Ireland to maintain travel restrictions on UK and Intra-EU air travel from the end of May onwards.”
ITTN reported yesterday that to date, there have been 5,549 Covid-19 tests administered on people in mandatory hotel quarantine, with only 127 tests returning a positive result – a detection rate of 2.29 per cent.