Know All About The Visa Requirements For Ireland
Blending the best of history, adventure, culture, and natural beauty perfectly, Ireland is one country that has to be on your bucket list. This picture-perfect land is abundant with bustling cities and laid-back destinations. Whether it is about ancient castles and monuments or the scenic stretches and lakes, the country never fails to amaze its visitors. Making for a majestic European holiday, the country with its fairly easy documentation procedures remains a favorite among avid travelers. So plan your trip to this larger-than-life country soon and do read these visa requirements for Ireland to make your visit hassle-free!
1. Who can enter Ireland without a visa?
The visa related requirements for Ireland are managed by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service and irrespective of the country’s visa policies, the visitors are required to go through immigration control while they enter Ireland. And while there are different types of visas available to travel to the country depending upon the purpose of visit, the focus here shall remain on the tourist visa which is valid for a duration of less than 3 months.
You can enter Ireland without a visa for a duration of under 3 months if you are a citizen of the following countries:
- United States of America
Additionally, you shall be exempted from a visa if you are a citizen of Andorra, Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, El Salvador, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Hong Kong (Special Admin. Region), Hungary, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kiribati, Latvia, Lesotho, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau (Special Admin. Region), Maldives, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Nauru, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Seychelles, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tonga, Trinidad & Tobago, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom & Colonies, Uruguay, Vanuatu or Vatican City. People belonging to the European Economic area too, do not require a visa to land in the beautiful country of Ireland.
While you do not need a visa if you are from any of the above-mentioned countries, certain documents need to be carried to enter the Republic of Ireland. Documents proving the purpose of travel to Ireland like hotel reservation, invitations or itinerary and a valid passport are a must. With this visa in hand, you shall be allowed to-
- Attend business meetings and conferences
- Appear for an exam
- Tour around the country
- Pay a visit to friends and family
Also note that if you plan on leaving the country and re-entering, you will have to prove to the immigration officer the valid reason for returning to Ireland. In case you are planning to explore Northern Ireland on your visit to this country, you will need a UK visa, and to re-enter the Republic of Ireland, a multiple-entry Irish visa shall be required.
Additionally, if you satisfy one of the following conditions, you won’t require an Irish visa-
- If you hold a Convention travel document issued by Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Poland, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden, or Switzerland. This document needs to be in accordance with Article 28 of the Geneva Convention.
- If are a holder of a legitimate permanent residence card 4 EU FAM or residence card 4 EU FAM duly issued under European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) Regulations 2015.
- If you are a holder of the 'Residence card of a family member of a Union citizen' in case an EU citizen is your family member.
2. Who needs a visa to travel to Ireland?
All the other countries which have not been listed above require an Irish visa to enter Ireland. These include Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Benin, Bhutan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Burkina Faso, Burma/Myanmar, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo (Brazzaville), Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Faroe Islands, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Macedonia (FYROM), Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Micronesia, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Russia, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, State of Palestine, Sudan, Suriname, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Timor Leste, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
The short stay ‘C’ visa shall be the most appropriate one with a validity of fewer than 3 months if you are traveling to the country for tourism purposes. You can choose from single-entry or multiple-entry visa and proceed towards applying for the visa.
3. How do I apply for an Irish visa?
You can apply for an Irish visa online on the official website of the Department of Justice and Equality. It is recommended that you should apply for a visa at least 8 weeks prior to your planned visit. While filling the application form, you will need to provide details like the type of visa, single or multiple entries, the reason for travel, passport details, and other personal information.
Once done, you will be provided with a summary sheet that will contain the address of the visa office, consulate or Irish Embassy where you will have to submit your application form. Once you have duly signed the declaration, you can make the payment and send the application along with other documents like your passport to the office mentioned on the summary sheet. You can also submit these documents to your nearest office, the list of which can be checked on their official website.
Please note that in case the visa application’s age is 16 or below, the declaration needs to be signed by a parent or guardian.
4. Documents needed to apply for an Irish visa
To apply for a tourist visa for Ireland and to enter the country, a traveler needs to send in the following documents along with the application-
- Duly signed summary sheets.
- An application letter stating the purpose and dates of travel along with your commitment to follow the rules.
- Reservation confirmation like hotels or camps.
- Travel and Medical insurance.
- Visa application fee payment proof.
- A letter from an Irish reference as an invitation to visit the country along with details about your relationship with reference and acceptance of rules.
- Proof that you will be able to support your trip financially.
- Proof that you will leave the country before the expiry of visa.
- Your current passport that should remain valid for a minimum of 6 months after you leave Ireland.
- 2 colored passport sized photographs with your name and visa application number.
- Proof of past visa refusals, if any.
Once you are done with collecting all of the above documents, seal every applicant’s documents into different envelopes and send them to the required address. In some cases, you might also be required to provide the officials with your biometric information. It is recommended that you contact your application office and inquire about the specific requirements. Also, make sure you carry a copy of all the above-mentioned documents while you travel to Ireland as the border control might require you to present the same.
5. Special visa requirements for children under 18 yrs of age
Ireland takes children’s safety very seriously, which is why they have stringent rules for minor travelers. For travelers under the age of 18, the following additional documents need to be presented-
- Parent or guardian’s consent letter.
- An identity-proof of parent or guardian.
- Proof of the child’s relationship with guardian/parent.
- In the case of deceased parents, death certificate.
- Adoption certificate, if applicable.
- Proof of divorce/marriage if the child’s surname does not match that of the parents or guardian.
6. What is the fee to apply for an Irish visa?
While there are some standard rates that are applicable while applying for an Irish visa, these might vary depending upon the purpose of travel and nationality. USD 68.35 for a single entry 90-day visa, USD 113.91 for a multiple-entry visa applicable for 5 years and USD 182.26 for an emergency re-entry visa and USD 28.48 for a transit visa are the standard charges for a visa for Ireland.
7. Which countries require a transit visa for Ireland?
If you are a citizen of the following areas, you will need to have a transit visa while passing through any port of Ireland-
Afghanistan, Albania, Cuba, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Georgia, Ghana, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Moldova, Nigeria, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Ukraine, Zimbabwe
8. Special Irish visa related schemes
Some special schemes make visa for Ireland an easy process for a few nationals. Read below details on the same-
- The Visa Waiver Program enables citizens of some Asian, Eastern European and Middle-Eastern countries to visit Ireland without a visa if they have a short-term UK visa. The countries included under the category are Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Russian Federation, Serbia, Turkey, Ukraine, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, India, Kazakhstan, Peoples Republic of China, Thailand, and Uzbekistan.
Note: This type of visa cannot be used if the national belongs to Oman, Qatar or Kuwait and is traveling from a third country.
- Another scheme called the British Irish Visa Scheme lets the travelers from India and China visit the Common Travel Area (CTA) with just one visa- UK short stay visa or Irish visa.
Though the application procedure might seem a little complicated, it has become very convenient with the official online portal. So get all those documents together and get ready to explore the country and its numerous attractions freely!