The Department of Foreign Affairs is liaising with authorities in Malta in relation to Irish holidaymakers who travelled there with out a digital Covid certificates and who now should full obligatory lodge quarantine.
The holidaymakers travelled to Malta, which is a member of the European Union, with out a cert having been unable to acquire one earlier than departure.
Liz Canavan, assistant secretary basic on the Department of Taoiseach, stated on Wednesday the Department of Foreign Affairs has been involved with authorities in Malta.
“Our understanding is that Malta has indicated that the digital Covid certificate is a requirement on the Re-open EU webpage and they have indicated that they will not accept handwritten certificates,” Ms Canavan instructed the Oireachtas Committee on Health.
“But the situation underlines our advice to all travellers that it is essential that travellers familiarise themselves with the inbound rules and process requirements for their country of destination.”
A spokeswoman for Minister of State Ossian Smyth, who’s overseeing the rollout of the Covid certs, stated “unfortunately there are a small proportion of cases where certs haven’t arrived yet and it is hoped that most of these will be received in the coming days”.
He has been monitoring the scenario in Malta and is working with the Department of Foreign Affairs to supply all doable help to resolve this,” the spokeswoman stated.
One million certs have been distributed by e-mail and an extra million have been posted out to folks since early final week, the spokeswoman added.
HSE Covid certificates
One holidaymaker who arrived in Malta on Monday evening instructed The Irish Times he had offered a cert exhibiting he was totally vaccinated however his girlfriend’s certificates had not arrived on time regardless of her being totally vaccinated three weeks in the past.
He stated her HSE vaccination card was not accepted upon touchdown nor was her unfavorable PCR take a look at.
“She called the helpline last week and they said it shouldn’t be a problem. As a backup she also went and got a PCR test because at the time they were saying that was fine. Then we got there last night and they said that wasn’t valid anymore,” he stated.
The couple need to pay for a lodge in Malta for the 14 days until the lady’s vaccine certificates comes by by way of e-mail, which they’ve been contacting the helpline to rearrange.
“They said they have escalated it so hopefully it comes through. Otherwise we’re stuck here. But we are not an isolated case. About half the people on the flight were put into quarantine,” he stated.
The lodge that they had booked for his or her vacation keep is permitting the couple to push their reserving out, however they’re “more concerned” about getting there earlier than their holidays run out.
“We’re not sure what to do. It’s quite hard to believe that it’s just an email they have to send. They had all her details when we rang up so you’d think it’s as simple as just clicking send,” stated the person.
Malta is a part of the Covid cert system alongside different European Union member states, however is simply permitting those that are totally vaccinated to enter the nation with out having to quarantine.
Most different EU member states, together with Ireland, are permitting entry into the nation with out obligatory lodge quarantine if passengers can present that they’re both totally vaccinated, have recovered from Covid-19 prior to now six months or can produce a unfavorable PCR take a look at.
The Irish Travel Agents Association (ITTA) has suggested potential holidaymakers to verify the principles and laws of their vacation spot nation earlier than departure, and in addition to verify in with their journey agent for probably the most up-to-date worldwide journey recommendation.
Paul Hackett, president of the ITTA, stated “to the best of our knowledge, Malta is the only EU country that is refusing to accept HSE vaccine certificates”.
“This is a situation that can be easily and quickly rectified, if Government issue certs to all affected travellers. The cert helpline is also under-resourced, which must be addressed as international travel continues to reopen,” he stated.