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Guidance issued on travel from Common Travel Area


Guidance has been issued for travel from the Common Travel Area - Great Britain, Republic of Ireland, Isle of Man, Channel Islands).

Travel within Northern Ireland

You should only travel within Northern Ireland when it is essential to do so.

Within Northern Ireland, you can travel to meet your Christmas bubble on one day only between 23 and 27 December. This is to provide some flexibility for those working on Christmas Day.

For the week beginning 26 December, there will be a ‘stay at home curfew’ in place from 8.00 pm to 6.00 am each day, with exceptions only for specifically defined purposes.

Essential travel

Essential travel includes but is not restricted to:

  • returning home, if you are away from your permanent place of residence

  • work, where you cannot work from home

  • accessing health and social care services

  • accessing critical services including education, childcare, or services to victims

  • fulfilling essential caring responsibilities

  • buying essential goods or services within your local area

  • attending the care and exercise of an animal, or veterinary services

  • fulfilling a legal obligation, including attending court or satisfying bail conditions, or participating in legal proceedings

  • to provide emergency response services


Travelling from Great Britain, Republic of Ireland, Isle of Man or Channel Islands (the Common Travel Area)

You should not travel in or out of Northern Ireland except where it is essential to do so. Guidance on what is essential is listed above.

If you are arriving into Northern Ireland from within the Common Travel Area and you plan to remain here for at least 24 hours, you must self-isolate upon arrival for 10 days in the same way as international arrivals.

You should follow the guidance for self-isolation, which includes a list of those who are exempt from self-isolation due to the nature of their work.

People who routinely cross the border for essential purposes are not subject to these requirements.

If you are arriving into Northern Ireland from within the common travel area to provide health or social care, or to provide an emergency service, you are not subject to these requirements. However you should consult with your employer before travelling or attending work, who will then advise you on the best course of action.

Your household members do not need to self-isolate with you, but they must take extra care to follow the guidance on social distancing, hand hygiene and respiratory hygiene. You are permitted to leave self-isolation in order to leave Northern Ireland, should your intended stay be shorter than 10 days.

If you are travelling to or from Northern Ireland you are also subject to the rules of where you are travelling to and from.


Links to the local guidance in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland are available below:


• England: https://www.gov.uk/find-coronavirus-local-restrictions


• Scotland: https://www.gov.scot/check-local-covid-level/


• Wales: https://gov.wales/coronavirus


• Ireland: https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/2dc71-level-5/#your-guide-to-the-changes