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Time limit will apply for indoor dining unless there's two-metres social distancing

Restaurants will need to stick to a maximum of six adults and nine children per table when they r...
Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

12.14 26 May 2021


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Time limit will apply for indo...

Time limit will apply for indoor dining unless there's two-metres social distancing

Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

12.14 26 May 2021


Share this article


Restaurants will need to stick to a maximum of six adults and nine children per table when they reopen, under new guidelines issued today.

A time limit of 105 minutes will apply when indoor restaurants reopen, but only when there's not two-metres social distancing.

There'll be no time limit for outdoor tables.

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All restaurants and pubs must be "clear of patrons" by 11:30 pm, and no live music will be permitted.

The document gives no indication of how long the measures will apply for, amid hopes they'll be eased further as vaccination rates increase and COVID-19 case numbers drop.

Fáilte Ireland's proposals had been expected yesterday, but they were held up at the Department of Taoiseach for further "observation".

They've now been officially released, ahead of outdoor dining returning on June 7th.

Under the guidelines, outdoor service will be allowed for a "maximum of six persons aged 13 or over per table".

That does not include younger children, as up to nine children (aged 12 or younger) will also be allowed at a table.

While there's no firm date for the return of indoor restaurants yet, the guidelines also explain what will be required when they do reopen.

They say physical distancing of two metres should be maintained between tables in an indoor setting, but that can be reduced to one metre where all other risk mitigation measures - such as plexiglass barriers and limits on crowd sizes - are met.

However, there'll be a time limit of 105 minutes and a pre-booking requirement for any such tables.

Such measures have already drawn criticism, with some experts suggesting the time limits are "not based on science".

The requirement for a pub to serve a 'substantial meal' to customers has been scrapped.

Main image: File photo. Picture by: Anthony Behar/SIPA USA/PA Images

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