Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

16.35 23 Jul 2021


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Restaurants, pubs and cafes allowing indoor dining will have to check customers for Digital COVID Certs and another identification document, under new guidelines.

Businesses will also have to keep customer details for contact tracing.

A meeting between the industry, Government officials and Fáilte Ireland concluded earlier today, and it's now expected the final regulations will be published this evening.

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It comes just days before indoor hospitality is allowed to reopen for vaccinated people from Monday.

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar says eventually it's the intention to allow people to dine indoors if they have a negative PCR or antigen test.

However, he's said it will be some time before that happens or any other restrictions are eased.

He said: "We don't have a date yet... it will probably take a couple of weeks.

"There's a strong sense in Government and advice we're getting from NPHET... that we should go carefully in any further easing of restrictions, at least until the Delta wave peaks."

The Tánaiste said it's expected the Delta wave will peak sometime in August or September, and there's "common sense" in not easing restrictions until that point is reached.

He said reopening next week does bring some risk, but he's 'confident' the hospital system can handle any extra pressure and the Government won't need to reimpose restrictions.

He added that he believes the current wave is one "we can withstand".

Main image: People eating in a restaurant. Picture by: Annette Riedl/DPA/PA Images

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