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Ireland COVID Wedding Restrictions: Latest Update

For couples planning a wedding in Ireland this summer, it’s been an anxious wait to see whether the easing of Ireland Covid wedding restrictions would go ahead as planned. The good news is that, as of Thursday 5 August, the maximum number of guests permitted to attend a wedding has increased from 50 to 100. This is great news, especially for those who have postponed their wedding more than once, in the hope that more of their family and friends would be allowed to attend. The other good news is that Ireland has now vaccinated close to 90% of its adult population, making larger gatherings safer for everyone.

Since the very beginning of the Coronavirus crisis, I’ve made it my mission to work hand-in-hand with the government and the Irish hospitality industry in order to provide clarity to both wedding vendors and couples. With weddings finally opening up again, it seems like the perfect time for an update!

As always, please note that guidelines and restrictions change regularly. If you are planning a wedding in Ireland, be sure to work closely with your Irish wedding planner to keep informed about the latest Ireland COVID wedding restrictions. You can also find more information on the government website.

Here is a breakdown of where things currently stand.

Guest Numbers

As I mentioned above, the latest rules published by the Irish government state that up to 100 people can attend a wedding service and reception. However, protective measures do still apply.

Weddings can take place at both indoor and outdoor venues. However, outdoor weddings are still preferable from a safety standpoint. Whatever the venue, businesses must ensure they follow current Public Health advice. For example, the function area must be self-contained and only one function per area or room is allowed to take place. In addition, face masks are required for any staff in a customer-facing role, such as waiters or bar staff, where no additional measures like protective screens are in place.

The Ceremony

Under the new guidance, places of worship in Ireland are open for religious services including wedding ceremonies for up to 100 people.

Music is permitted at the ceremony or service. However, the guidelines advise against singing or the use of wind-blown musical instruments like trumpets or clarinets. Guests should also be asked not to sing along to any hymns or songs. A pipe organ or string quartet is a better option if you wish to have live music at your ceremony.

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The Reception

  • Wedding receptions should be a sit-down meal only.
  • Guests must wear masks during the reception when arriving at their table and when leaving it. Guests should enter and exit reception spaces through separate doors.
  • Hand sanitisers must be placed at every access point. There should be clear signage to encourage guests to use the sanitiser.
  • There should also be prominent signage explaining social distancing rules, including clear markings showing safe distances.
  • All service stations for drinks, canapés, etc. must be managed by venue staff with no self-service and individual portions wherever possible. Queues should be managed to allow for social distancing.
  • During the dinner service, there should be no family-style dining. Instead, food should be fully plated. Water jugs must be poured by service personnel and salt and pepper, butter dishes, etc. should only be available on request.
  • Live music is not allowed at an indoor wedding reception. For an outdoor reception, live music and other performances are allowed. Novelty acts are not permitted at any venue.
  • Dancing is not currently allowed.

Additional Guidelines

  • Hotel accommodation is allowed for the bride(s), groom(s), or wedding guests.
  • Wedding photographers are allowed.
  • Domestic travel is allowed anywhere in Ireland. International travel is also allowed, subject to restrictions.

Even though we still have restrictions to navigate, I’m so excited to get back to bigger weddings! I hope you found this roundup of Ireland Covid wedding restrictions helpful!

Slán go Fóill,


Images by Doreen Kilfeather, DK Photography