To Recover Irish Aviation And Tourism
– Restore UK CTA From 1 June
– Remove All Travel Restrictions To/From EU By 1 July
Ryanair, Ireland’s largest airline, today (27th May) called on Micheál Martin’s Government to announce an immediate rescue plan for Irish aviation and tourism, which is being devastated by Government mismanagement of the post-Covid reopening, even as vaccinations flood through the population. Ryanair called on Taoiseach Micheál Martin in this plan (due to be announced on Friday 28th May) to;
- Restore the UK Common Travel Area, effective Tues 1 June. Ryanair condemned as bizarre and untenable Government policy that UK citizens can drive over the Northern Ireland border without restriction, yet UK families, visitors and businesses flying into Ireland must quarantine for 14 days despite the fact that over 75% of the UK adult population had now been vaccinated. In recent weeks, major European economies, including Portugal and Spain, have removed all restrictions on UK visitors, but Ireland continues to insist on its useless quarantine of vaccinated UK visitors, only if they fly here from the UK, even while they can drive over Northern Ireland border with no restrictions.
- Announce that from 1 July, all travel outbound and inbound between Ireland and all other EU member states will not be subject to any hotel quarantine or Covid restrictions. At the end of June, over 80% of Ireland’s adult population (and over 80% of the adults of most EU states) will have received at least their first dose vaccine. There should be no further restrictions on air travel between Ireland and the EU from 1 July onwards, and the ludicrous requirement that visitors to Ireland from France, Belgium and Luxembourg must spend 2 weeks in hotel quarantine should be removed. Irish citizens have a right to freedom of movement between Ireland and other EU member states, and as vaccinations reach 80%, there is no justification for hotel or any other quarantines, particularly when 80% of EU adults will have received at least their first dose vaccine.
- Recent “scare stories”, promulgated by NPHET, about the Indian variant are not grounded in science or medical fact when all of the evidence concludes that the Indian variant is not resistant to vaccines. There are now less than 100 Covid patients in Ireland’s hospitals, and less than 40 Covid patients in ICU’s. The vaccine programme is working, so Ireland needs an urgent plan to restore the UK CTA from Tues 1 June, and restore the unrestricted right to travel freely between Ireland and other EU member states from 1 July.
Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary said:
“This Government has visited untold damage on Irish aviation and tourism. Ireland has a Minister for Transport who has no plan, no policy and no commitment to aviation. Ireland is an island on the periphery of Europe, yet our Transport Minister has sat on an Aviation Recovery Plan since July 2020, but taken no action at all. Ryanair has no faith in Minister Eamonn Ryan, who has shown himself to be ineffective and not up to the job, even while Irish airlines are closing bases here, and moving aircraft and jobs overseas to the UK and Europe.
It is time for Micheál Martin’s Government to introduce an emergency rescue plan for Irish aviation and tourism. Staycations may fill some hotels in the South and West of Ireland during July & August, but it will not fill the hotels of Dublin, and nor will it support Irish tourism once the schools reopen in September. Since our Minister for Transport is incapable or unwilling to act, Micheál Martin and Leo Varadkar must now take charge and reopen Ireland from the UK from Tues 1st June next, and to/from the EU from Thurs 1st July next”.