Abolition of adult re-entry visas

NOTE If you are from a visa required country, and have a valid IRP card or GNIB card, you will no longer require a visa to leave and return to Ireland on or after 13 May 2019. You will be able to show your passport and IRP or GNIB card to prove to airlines and immigration officials that you have a right to travel to Ireland. You will be exempt from the requirement to hold a visa.

Abolition of re-entry visas

From 13 May 2019 visa required nationals who hold a valid IRP/GNIB card will no longer need a re-entry visa to travel to Ireland. Their IRP/GNIB card and passport will be sufficient. This brings Ireland in line with other EU Member States.

Over 40, 000 people annually will benefit from this change.


Visa required nationals without an IRP/GNIB card

Visa required nationals who do not hold an IRP/GNIB card will continue to require a valid visa, which must be applied for from outside the State.

  • Minors. Under 16 year olds are not issued with an IRP/GNIB card. Their parents or guardians will be able to apply for a re-entry visa for them, to ensure that they can travel in and out of Ireland while living here. This re-entry visa can be applied for when living in Ireland (all other visas must be applied for from outside the State).
  • Intending residents. The Irish Residence Permit is issued to non-EEA nationals who have a permission to reside in the State for more than 90 days. It can take some weeks to get a registration appointment, and up to 2 weeks for an IRP card to be produced following registration. Visa required nationals who intend to travel in and out of Ireland during the first four months of their planned stay should apply for a multiple entry visa, which will allow them to travel into Ireland multiple times in a given period, before their IRP card is issued.
  • Diplomats or other accredited members of staff at an Embassy (Administrative and Technical Staff / Service Staff / Private Domestic Employee) posted to Ireland must continue to apply for a re-entry visa following arrival in the State. Applications should be made via the Protocol Division of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
  • Holders of Stamp 6 permissions cannot currently be issued with an IRP card and therefore may continue to apply for  re-entry visas. Applications must be made by post
Document icon Re-entry visa application form for Stamp 6 holders
(PDF 255KB)


Why is the re-entry visa being abolished?

Improvements in security in the Irish registration certificate, the Irish Residence Permit, has made it possible to eliminate the need for re-entry visas, without compromising the safety and security of the visa or immigration system. The IRP card is in the standard EU format for residence permits, and is recognised by airlines.

The abolition of the re-entry visa system removes an administrative burden from visa required nationals who live in Ireland and who hold an Irish Residence Permit. They will no longer have to submit their passport to the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service for processing, and will no longer have to pay the re-entry visa fee.


Timescale – abolition on 13 May 2019.

Due to the need to notify airlines, ferry companies and immigration authorities in other countries, the option of presenting an IRP/GNIB card and passport at the point of entry will not come into effect until 13 May 2019. Until then, visa required nationals will need a valid visa or re-entry visa to travel to Ireland.


Important: Details of interim arrangements if travelling to Ireland before 13 May

If you are travelling and will return to Ireland before 13 May 2019, you will still require a re-entry visa, as Ireland has to give a period of notice to border agencies, airlines etc of this new visa exemption. We will process your application in the normal way, unless you cancel the application.

Please read the full details of the interim arrangements.



*Note: Our top questions and answers about these changes can be found in this Frequently Asked Questions document.


Application for minors

1. About re-entry visas

A minor needs a re-entry visa to leave Ireland for a short period (usually up to 90 days) and then return again, eg on holiday with their parents.

If the minor leaves without a re-entry visa or does not return within the period shown on the visa, you (the minor's parent or guardian) must apply for a new long stay or short stay visa for them to come back to Ireland.

A minor who holds an Irish residence permit, the IRP or GNIB card, does not need a re-entry visa. IRP and GNIB cards are issued to minors who are resident in Ireland on the basis of EU Treaty Rights and have an EU FAM 4 permission. Other minors are not registered and do not receive an Irish residence permit.

Read the general conditions for all visas.

2. Who can apply

A minor cannot apply for a re-entry visa by themselves. The application must be made by their parent or guardian. You can apply for a re-entry visa for your minor if they:

3. Types of re-entry visa

There are 2 types of re-entry visa. Select the one you want on your application form when you apply:

  1. Single journey visa allows minor to leave and return to Ireland on one occasion during the period shown on the visa, typically within a 90 day period
  2. Multiple journey visa allows minor to leave for short journeys and return to Ireland on more than one occasion during the period shown on the visa, all minor's under 16 years will get a multiple visa in line with their parent or guardian’s registration certificate to a maximum of one year. minor's whose parents or guardians are EEA nationals will be granted a re-entry visa for a maximum of two years.

4. How to apply

To apply for a re-entry visa:

  1. Download and complete the application form (as below)
  2. Prepare your application documents(as below)
  3. Submit your visa application by registered post

IMPORTANT: You should not purchase travel tickets before you receive a visa decision.

5. Application form and documents

Submit everything listed below.

i. Application form

Download and complete the re-entry visa application form on behalf of your the minor.

Document icon Re-entry visa application form for minors
(PDF 286KB)

ii. Passport

Include your minor's current passport with your application.

iii. Birth certificate

Include the minor's original birth certificate with your application. Do not submit a photocopy.

Include an original certified translation (into English or Irish) of the birth certificate if it is not in the English or Irish language. Find out how to make a certified translation.

Do not submit photocopies.

vi. Proof of parent or guardian's identity

If you are a non-EEA national parent or guardian of the minor, include the current registration certificate (ie Irish Residence Permit or GNIB card) for one of the minor's parents with the application. Do not submit a photocopy.

If you are an EEA national, include the original or a photocopy of government issued photo ID eg driving licence, passport or a national identity card.

v. Proof of guardianship arrangement

If you are the minor’s guardian, include proof of this, in the form of a guardianship arrangement from the minor’s parent’s or a State authority. Include an original certified translation (into English or Irish) if it is not in the English or Irish language.

vi. Proof that the minor lives in Ireland

Your minor’s school or doctor must sign the application form and state that the minor is resident in Ireland.

vii. Photos

Include 2 passport-sized colour photos of the minor.

The photos must meet all the following rules for visa photographs.

One of the photos must be signed and stamped on the back with the official seal of the minor's school or the minor’s doctor.

Submit your application

When ready, put all the items listed above into an envelope. We recommend that you use a strong padded envelope to prevent damage and help stop items being lost.

If you are making applications for more than one minor, submit them together. To do so:

  • Place each set of application documents into separate ordinary envelopes
  • Write the name of each minor on each envelope
  • Then place each envelope into a larger (padded) envelope

Double-check that everything is included. You can then submit your application by By registered post

Please note that documents cannot be added after the application has been submitted by registered post.

6. Submit your application by registered post

You must submit your application by registered post at a post office.

Registered post is more secure than ordinary post. You can also track your package online.

Do not send your application by ordinary post. We will return it to you without processing.

Application address

Re-entry Visa Processing Office
Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service
Department of Justice and Equality
13-14 Burgh Quay
Dublin 2
D02 XK70

When to apply

It takes 15-20 working days to process a re-entry visa application submitted by post.

When deciding when to apply for your minor, you should also include extra time for weekends, public holidays and postage to-and-from the Re-entry Visa Processing Office.

In the case of an emergency, such as a family illness, you can email the re-entry visa office and request urgent processing. You must provide proof of the emergency when making your request, by email to:reentryqueries@justice.ie

Return address

After processing we will return your documents (and visa, if approved) to you by registered post.

To request a different return address, type or write a note with the new address and include it with your application. We cannot accept a request for a new return address after you submit your application.

There will be no public office facility for the processing of re-entry visa’s from 13 May 2019

7. Visa decisions

Visa decisions are made in the order applications are received.

For applications received through the postal system, an update on applications is published every weekday.

If your application is approved

An Irish visa will be placed into a blank page of the minor's passport.

For applications received through the postal system, we will return your passport, visa and documents to you by registered post. (If you requested a different return address, we will send them there.)

Double-check the visa when you receive it to make sure your details are correct, eg name, date of birth, dates of visa validity, etc. If not, contact us.

If your application is refused

For applications received through the postal system, we will return your passport and documents to you by registered post. We will also include a 'letter of refusal' that explains why your application was refused.

In both cases, you may wish to address the reason(s) for the refusal and (if possible) apply again.



If you have questions, contact us.

Updated: 12 April 2019

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