The Republic of Ireland has arranged for non-national legal residents with expired Irish Resident Permits (IRP) to be able to travel internationally during the holidays.
The Minister of Justice issued a Travel Confirmation Notice requesting carriers to allow foreign lawful residents of Ireland to travel on their recently expired IRP card.
The Notice only applies to those applying to renew their permission before their IRP card expires.
“This entitlement applies to persons who have submitted an application to renew their IRP card before its expiry date,” the Travel Notice states.
It further reads: “A receipt of an application to renew, which notes the date of application, will provide proof that the person has applied to renew their registration prior to their current IRP card expiring.”
The Travel Notice is only valid during the holiday season, from 09 December 2023 until 31 January 2023.
Why Ireland issued the Travel Notices
The arrangement helps foreign residents who are renewing their recently expired Irish Resident Permit cards to be able to travel during the Christmas and New Year seasons.
Ireland’s Immigration Service Delivery (ISD) is currently experiencing a backlog in processing applications to renew IRP cards.
Those who have applied to renew their IRP card could wait two or more weeks to receive it via post.
Waiting for their new IRP cards would mean missing out on the opportunity to travel abroad during the holidays.
Who can use the Travel Notice and how it works
Non-nationals of the European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) who legally reside in Ireland can use the Travel Notice if they meet all the following conditions:
- Their Irish Residence Permit card is expiring within eight weeks.
- They have applied in advance to renew their permission to the ISD.
- They plan to travel internationally after 06 December 2023 and return to Ireland on or before 31 January 2024.
Those who meet the requirements should download and print the Travel Notice.
They can present the Travel Notice, their expired IRP card, and proof of renewal application (i.e., email confirmation that states the date of application) to immigration authorities and airlines upon request.
ISD will also advise all airlines and foreign authorities of the arrangement. However, foreign legal residents of Ireland should contact their carrier before traveling to ensure they will be allowed to board.
Those traveling back to Ireland through a third country may have to comply with the country’s immigration requirements, including visas.
Non-EU/EEA legal residents of Ireland whose IRP cards had expired before applying to renew them are not entitled to use the Travel Notice. They will not be allowed to re-enter the country if they travel abroad.
Options for those returning after January 2024
Foreign legal residents returning to Ireland after January 2024 need a valid Irish Resident Permit or a visa.
They must apply to renew and receive their IRP card to bring during their travel. A soft copy, such as a scan or photo, of the new IRP card will not be accepted.
Those unable to renew their IRP card before their travel can apply for a visa online on AVATS, Ireland’s Online Visa/Preclearance Application Facility.
They will then be directed to submit their application to a local visa office near them. The office will then do their best to expedite their visa application.
Options for foreigners without Irish Residence Permits
Non-EU/EEA individuals with a letter of permission to apply for an IRP or those waiting to receive one can contact the ISD in charge of their application.
Qualified IRP applicants may be issued temporary permission to travel during the holidays. To do so, they must submit evidence of their holiday travel plans. This includes flight details and airline tickets for their travel abroad and return journey.
Visa-required nationals on a multi-entry Ireland visa may still use it to re-enter the country. This is provided that their multi-entry visa is still valid.
Individuals with a single entry visa must apply for a re-entry visa from an overseas office before returning to Ireland.
Traveling to the UK or EU from Ireland
An Irish Residence Permit does not permit travel to the United Kingdom (UK) or any other EU country. The Republic of Ireland is separate from the UK. While it is part of the EU, it is not part of the Schengen Common Travel Area.
The entry requirements for other countries still depend on the type of passport a person holds. They must fulfill the requirements of the country they want to visit.
Due to the Common Travel Area arrangement between Ireland and the UK, there are no routine checks for individuals traveling between Ireland and the UK.
Travelers do not have to show identity documents when crossing the border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
When boarding a plane or ferry to England, Wales, and Scotland, travelers will likely be asked to show proof of identity or citizenship. Those requiring a visa to travel to the UK or Ireland must present it, along with their passport.
Legal residents of Ireland who are non-visa nationals entering the UK via Jersey, Guernsey, or the Isle of Man also do not need an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA). However, they must present proof that they are legally residing in Ireland.
Aside from an IRP, they can present an Irish driving license or learner permit, medical card, GP visit card, European Health Insurance Card, Permanent Residence Certificate, or National Age Card.