Michael O’Leary Blasts Latest Travel Rules As “Gobbledygook”

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Michael O’Leary has branded the new travel rules as “ineffective and inappropriate gobbledygook”. He also criticised the Government for adopting “NPHET nonsense”.

Yesterday, the Cabinet agreed that all travellers arriving into Ireland will be required to produce a negative Covid test. They will also be required to enter hotel quarantine if they do not provide a negative covid test. More on this here.

These rules that were criticised by O’Leary mean that passengers must have an Antigen test taken at least 48 hours before arrival. Or a PCR test 72 hours beforehand.

This negative test also applies to everyone who arrives into the country. This is irrespective of vaccination status. It also includes people arriving into Ireland from Britain. Children under the age of 11 are also exempt from this requirement.

Michael O’Leary claimed that these rules will only encourage people to fly into Northern Ireland, before travelling south.

Latest Travel Rules Are “ineffective and inappropriate” – O’Leary

Heavily critical of the latest rules, Ryanair boss O’Leary had this to say.

“We condemn this latest NPHET/Govt gobbledygook for what it is, ineffective and inappropriate gobbledygook”.

O’Leary continued, “When EU passengers have, for the last 6 months, been travelling safely with the benefit of the EU DCC or negative PCRs, what medical or health benefit is to be derived by asking these passengers to now produce negative antigen tests, when both Nphet and the CMO have been opposed to antigen tests for 18 months?“.

“We note that neither the CMO [Dr Tony Holohan] nor the Government have defined what a “professionally done” antigen test means or look like. How are airline or Border Control staff supposed to understand what a professionally done antigen test is, or looks like, when neither the CMO nor the Goverment have even defined it”.

O’Leary also added, “If this Government had any spine or leadership, it would ignore NPHET’s nonsense advice on travel. There is no medical or health benefit to be gained by requiring vaccinated EU citizens to provide negative antigen. Or PCR tests prior to their arrival in Ireland”. 

“At a time when over 90 per cent of Ireland’s adults are fully vaccinated, these confusing new regulations requiring unexplained ‘professionally done’ antigen tests provide no additional medical or health benefit. But are yet another way for Nphet and the Government to restrict air travel on and off an Island on the periphery of Europe”. 

O’Leary and co have also called on the Government to return to the original system. This saw travellers just needing a Covid cert or negative Covid test for entry.