ireland visa-free

Ireland to reopen visa-free travel for South Africa

Panashe Ziramba - 05.07.2021

South Africans are now able to travel to Ireland visa-free again.

Earlier in 2021, the Republic of Ireland closed off its visa-free access to most countries, including South Africa, due to high levels of Covid-19.

Did Ireland reopen visa-free travel for South Africa?

Ireland has been visa-free for South Africans since 1935. The two countries agreed on the Aliens Act 1935. But with the rise of Covid-19, Ireland had to close down its ports of entry in January 2021 to contain the level of transmission.

In South Africa, Covid-19 rates increase higher and higher by the day. Consequently, South Africa has become a high-risk country.

However, according to Travelnews, Ireland’s well-executed vaccination drive has opened up the possibility of allowing international tourists back into the green lands. This was further corroborated by Ireland’s embassy in Pretoria.

While no date has been announced, very soon, South African travellers will have visa-free access to Ireland, albeit under certain conditions.

What do South African travellers need to visit Ireland?

Given the high levels of Covid-19 transmission in South Africa, travelling to other countries is not as easy as it once was. However, one can still forge ahead and take international trips. In the case of Ireland, here is a list of things you need in order to gain entry into one of the very few European countries still accepting of South African travellers:

  • A valid passport.
  • Travel insurance is still needed with travelling abroad. The country needs to know that you will be covered if unexpected events were to arise. The insurance policy includes coverage for trip cancellations, medical emergencies, travel delays, and luggage
  • Currency restrictions for entry: 10 000 Euros = R170 415,92 (depending on currency rate)
  • Exemptions of Covid-19 results are needed, no more than 72 hours before you arrive in Ireland
  • Post arrival Covid-19 test (it’s free) should be booked in advance and taken at least five days upon the arrival
  • 14 days quarantine upon arrival. This must be pre-booked in advance of travel
  • You must complete Covid-19 a Passenger Locator form online. Failure to complete is an offence

Attraction points in Ireland

Ireland is filled with beautiful, magical, and stunning scenery. Areas filled with intriguing background and historical stories, it is an exciting place to be. Here are six top attraction points to experience:

Kilkenny Castle

Castle was built in 1195 by the Normans, and over the centuries has been built on and developed. The castle was sold to the people of Kilkenny and is now a popular attraction for visitors from Ireland and around the world.

Skellig Michael

The rocky island rises out of the Atlantic just off of the Iveragh Peninsula and was frequented by ascetic monks. With beautiful scenery and adrenaline activation heights.

Kylemore Abbey

Kylemore estate was built in 1867 by a wealthy doctor as a romantic gift for his wife. The castle was purchased by Benedictine Nuns who, after fleeing Ypres in 1920, set up a Catholic boarding school in order to educate local and international Catholic girls. Nowadays the impressive building, which sits on the shores of Kylemore Lake, is open to visitors according to Touropia.

Giant’s Causeway

The world-famous Giant’s Causeway is made up of 40,000 interlockings, hexagonally shaped columns of basalt rock that create stepping stones. The unusual rock formation was a result of volcanic activity that occurred around 60 million years ago.

Cliffs of Moher

Standing at 214 meters over the depths of the Atlantic Ocean, and stretching for an awesome 8 km in County Clare. The awe-inspiring cliffs are also home to Ireland’s largest mainland seabird colony.

Dingle Bay

Surrounded by a wide expanse of nature, the bay makes up part of the 2,500km long Wild Atlantic Way. Mesmerising views across the deep blue of the ocean and explore the crooked stone huts that were built on the peninsula by monks in the Middle Ages.