Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has confirmed that bookings have been paused on the State’s mandatory hotel quarantine system. Sources have said the pause will last for four days.
Mr Donnelly said that airlines will be contacted and asked not to board passengers from high risk countries who do not have a booking on the system.
He was responding after it emerged that the reservation system for the State’s mandatory hotel quarantine system is not accepting bookings until next Monday.
“The department is operating on a precautionary principle. The hotel quarantine system has only been in place for 18 days, believe it or not. We have gone from 33 countries up to I think it’s 71 countries now. On a precautionary basis the department has paused the bookings to make sure we have the capacity,” he told RTE’s Six One News.
“There is still a high level of walk-ins which shouldn’t be happening. Some of the airlines which are meant to not be allowing people on the planes are letting them on so I know Minister [for Transport Eamon]Ryan is engaging with the carriers on that. There is significant additional capacity coming in on Monday, we’re going up from about 650 rooms up to about 960. And then the following Monday again a lot more coming online, we will be above 1300.”