Michael Martin has finally announced the reopening of salons, retail and restaurants.
The Taoiseach addressed the nation this evening about Ireland’s phased reopening, after months of Level 5 restrictions.
Following the advice of NPHET and the Cabinet Committee on Covid-19, restrictions will begin to ease from May 10, starting with the reopening of hair salons and barbers – along with libraries, museums and galleries, and team sports training in pods of 15.
The new measures also mean non-essential retail can resume their click and collect services from May 10, and three different households will also be permitted to meet outdoors from the same date.
Intercounty travel will also be permitted from May 10.
Up to 50 people will be allowed to attend religious services from May 10, including weddings, funerals and masses.
There will still be strict limits on the number of guests who can attend the wedding party after the ceremony, with only six being permitted to attend indoor wedding parties and 15 guests permitted outdoors.
The new measures mean non-essential retail is permitted to reopen fully on May 17, and hotels and B&Bs can reopen on June 2.
From June 7, restaurants and all pubs are permitted to serve customers outdoors, and gyms and swimming pools will also reopen.
Those who have received their Covid-19 vaccinations will be permitted to meet two other vaccinated households indoors from May 10.
Those who have received the Pfizer vaccine can meet other fully vaccinated people indoors after one week of getting their second jab, while those who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine can meet other fully vaccinated people indoors two weeks after getting the jab.
People who got the AstraZeneca jab are permitted to meet two other fully vaccinated households indoors four weeks after getting their second vaccine.
Vaccinated grandparents will also be able to meet grandchildren from May 10 as part of the new vaccine bonus plan.
The Taoiseach said the easing of measures will allow up to 200k people to return to work.
“I understand how difficult it has been for business and workers, and the huge desire there is for people just to make a living again,” he said.
“Hope is returning.”