We've partnered up with to offer a space where you can talk directly to Peter from and get an exclusive discount code for a free job listing. If you are recruiting or know anyone else who is please check out the forum here.
If you have a new account but can't post, please email Niamh on [email protected] for help to verify your email address. Thanks :)

EU travel requirements: antigen test contradictory information

  • 15-07-2021 8:25am
    Registered Users Posts: 8 tomatoKetchup


    I am planning to travel to France in August (I am a French citizen living in Ireland), but I am having trouble finding out exactly what I need to avoid being stopped from boarding the plane/entering the country.

    Being 32, I am not vaccinated yet, and am on a waiting list to get a J&J (it's looking like I won't get called before my flight though as I was told the backlog is huge ATM).

    Which means I need a negative test, that I am sure of.

    According to this page from the French gvt, France requires either an negative antigen or PCR test to be able to enter the country.

    However, this page from states that antigen tests cannot be used to travel abroad. Does that mean that I will get prevented to board my plane at Dublin airport if I only have an negative antigen test and no PCR test (even though France accepts both)?

    Thanks for enlightening me.


  • Registered Users Posts: 30,469 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen

    "this page from states that antigen tests cannot be used to travel abroad"

    It does not say that. It says:

    "You cannot use a HSE COVID-19 test result for international travel from Ireland."

    That's because they don't issue a digital covid cert. In any case, the HSE tests are PCR tests, not antigen.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,522 ✭✭✭ copeyhagen

    Get your antigen test from gosafe48 and you will be grand. If you need to, fill out the passenger locater forms online, there's a lot in them now.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,488 ✭✭✭ CelticRambler

    You don't say whether you're (still?) registered with the French health service, but if so, I would recommend that you hold off getting a vaccine in Ireland and book an appointment (on Doctolib) in France as soon as possible. Loads of appointments available here, now vaccinating from 12 years up, and you get your Digital Covid Cert as soon as you leave the vaccination centre. If you didn't hear about it this week, from August onwards, you'll need that to access many day-to-day services (e.g. on public transport, in shopping centres, bars and restaurants). From now, the French authorities will be expecting your PCR test results to be on a Covid Cert, so if you don't have one, be prepared to explain why not.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8 tomatoKetchup

    I'm even more confused now, as these 2 sentences sound exactly the same to me. Besides, I thought those free walk-in HSE test WERE antigen (aren't the PCR test only done by private companies and you have to pay for them?).

  • Registered Users Posts: 30,469 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen

    No. The HSE is not doing antigen tests, they've always done PCR tests, but the test result is delivered by SMS with no cert.

    The private companies are doing both antigen and PCR tests, in both cases they issue a digital covid cert.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 8 tomatoKetchup

    I thought about getting my vaccine in France yes. Problem is, first I'm not registered with French HS anymore (been 10 years since I lived in France) and also, I'm not staying long enough to be able to get 2 shots. And apparently the J&J that only needs 1 shot is not given to people younger than 55 in France (though I need to get confiirmation on that last one).

  • Registered Users Posts: 30,469 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen

    @CelticRambler "you get your Digital Covid Cert as soon as you leave the vaccination centre"

    ...from the first dose? Is that enough to get you into a restaurant?

  • Registered Users Posts: 209 ✭✭ Responder XY

    As far as I understood it, what tests were acceptable was at the discretion of the country that you are entering.

    So going to France, you can enter with either a PCR or Antigen test (you'll need to go to a private operator for either as HSE won't issue a cert)

    Coming back to Ireland, you'll need to get a PCR test from someone who will issue the appropriate cert.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8 tomatoKetchup

    Ok I get you. Now I'm still unsure whether this will be enough to enter France. On the page I linked they say they accept both antigen and PCR tests results but do not mention if these have to be accompanied with the digital covid cert. or not. Also will they let me board the plane at Dublin airport without the cert?

    Post edited by tomatoKetchup on

  • Registered Users Posts: 8 tomatoKetchup

    Could be a solution but not living in Dublin this will be a bit complicated as these tests centres are not that close to the airport.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 8 tomatoKetchup

    Sorry your post only showed up now. So whatever test I get, it has to have a the travel cert. with it, which means private company only then. Sounds a lot like money-making sleight of hand there...

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 17,643 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Graham

    The gist of it is; the HSE aren't going to cover the cost of a test for the population to go on their travels.

    Whether that changes and they start to issue certs in the future, who knows.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8 tomatoKetchup

    I hear you, it makes sense not to entice people to go travelling. Cheers.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,488 ✭✭✭ CelticRambler

    Yes. You don't need a vaccine to get into a restaurant (or shopping centre, or onto a train) - you need the Cert, which contains all your Covid-related info, i.e. infected and recovered, PCR-tested, vaccinated (and if so with what and when). Based on that info, the people in charge can decide whether or not to let you into their establishment and/or event.

    PCR tests in France are free at the moment, but they'll be billed come the autumn to discourage people from opting for a free test instead of a free vaccine.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,522 ✭✭✭ copeyhagen

    You joking? One at Rosemont business park. Ten mins from airport. That's where we went

  • Registered Users Posts: 65 ✭✭ inisfree0504

    Does anyone know what private companies have been authorised to provide Digital Covid Certs for negative test from next week? Min of State Ossian Smyth said three had been fully authorized, but I can't figure out which ones they are. I figure it may be easier to travel with an actual DCC rather than the other certificates they have issued up to now?

  • Registered Users Posts: 8 tomatoKetchup

    If you have a car maybe. Anyway, you can get a test at the airport and it comes with the DCC. I'm lucky that France accepts the Antigen one cause I can get results within an hour so can come early on the day of my flight and get it done beforehand then.

  • Registered Users Posts: 350 ✭✭ jeanfrancois

    You are not lucky. This is the system that has been agree for all of EU + Switzerland. Ireland is the exception to this (and maybe one or two other unimportant countries ?) but people here think it is normal. Like you say $$$... PCR in my country 140 euro.