Of course we’ll say céad míle fáilte (one hundred thousand welcomes) when you arrive in Ireland. But just after that, we’ll probably ask you for your passport. Politely, of course. There are different requirements for different nationalities so here’s what you need to know.
To enter the Republic or Northern Ireland, you need a valid passport. While e-passports are commonly used now, they are not a necessity to enter Ireland. UK citizens do not require a passport to enter Ireland, but carriers by air or sea require some form of identification with a photograph (usually either a passport or driving license with photo).
EU citizens are required to have a passport or national identity card; while citizens of all other countries must have a valid passport. ALWAYS check what form of ID is required with your individual airline, ferry company or travel agent before traveling.
Citizens of the EEA member states (the 27 countries of the European Union EU, together with Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein) and many other countries including USA, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa do not require visas to gain entry to Republic or Northern Ireland. The full list of countries whose citizens do NOT require a visa can be found here.
Citizens of all other countries should contact their local Irish Embassy/Consulate prior to traveling to the Republic of Ireland, and visitors to Northern Ireland should contact their local British Embassy/High Commission or Consular Office. Irish visa information can be found on the Department of Foreign Affairs website and citizens information website, and information on the UK (for visiting Northern Ireland) can be found on the Home Office website.
From July 2012 extending for a period of four years, tourists from 14 nations that previously did require a visa to holiday in the Republic will not need a separate Irish visa if they have a short-term UK visa. Check here for a list of the countries able to avail of this visa waiver scheme.
Embassies and visa contacts
Further information for the Republic, including a full list of Irish Embassies, is available from:
The Department of Foreign Affairs
Tel: +353 1 478 0822
Further information for Northern Ireland is available from your local British Embassy or Consulate, for details please contact:
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Tel: + 44 207 008 1500