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'It's not necessary anymore': Aer Lingus wants rid of the two-week quarantine for people flying into Ireland

The Irish airline has echoed calls made by Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary.

IRISH AIRLINE AER Lingus has called for the Irish government to drop the recommended two-week quarantine period for those who return from abroad.

Anyone who arrives in Ireland is asked to self-isolate for two weeks and is required by law to fill out a Passenger Locator Form, which allows authorities to carry out follow-up checks to ensure that people are staying put, and to help with contact tracing if necessary.

In an interview today on Nuacht a hAon on RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta, Donal Moriarty, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer with Aer Lingus, said that the government had an obligation to drop the quarantine for passengers coming into Ireland, and that the industry needed more clarity around travel advice to be able to open up to tourism again.

Speaking with Cormac Ó hEadhra, Moriarty said Ireland should follow the example of other European countries as they open up their economies again to tourism.

“We don’t think it’s necessary [quarantine]. In other countries in the EU, tourism is starting up again, or they have certainty around dates when they can open again…

“For example, Spain is opening at the start of July, and they have no quarantine.”

It’s clear that we’re doing well in the fight against the coronavirus and we have the statistics, they are strong, and they are comparable to other countries who are opening up again to travel and tourism.

“We believe that the government has an obligation to change their [travel] advice, and to end the quarantine requirement, we don’t think it’s necessary anymore.”

He said that Aer Lingus thought that flights would begin again in July, but that they weren’t able to name destinations due to a lack of clarity from the Irish government.

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“Things aren’t as clear as they should be, especially in terms of the government advice on travel. They must change that, or give new advice, as regards international travel.

There’s no ban at the moment, but the advice is not to travel unless absolutely necessary… and as well as that, we have the two-week quarantine for incoming passengers.

“So, we really need new advice from the government before we can implement the new system for EU flights.”

In relation to recently announced pay cuts by Aer Lingus, Moriarty said that had been a very difficult decision but “we had no other choice.”

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