18 Aug 2022

EXPLAINER: Irish Rail introduces new rules for train travel this Christmas

Irish Rail announce pre-booked tickets mandatory for travel this Christmas

Irish Rail has warned customers looking to travel over the Christmas period and New Year that it will be mandatory to pre-book Intercity travel in advance.

From December 18, non-essential inter-county travel will be permitted for the first time in two months, or three months in the case of Dublin, however, Irish Rail will be operating at 50% capacity on board rail services and all public transport.

Irish Rail says pre-booking Intercity travel will "ensure the available capacity is effectively managed, providing rail customers with a safe and sanitary travelling environment over the Christmas and New Year period".

People intending to travel between December 18th and January 6th are advised:

  • Please only travel if your journey is necessary, and avoid peak and busier times if at all possible
  • Holders of existing tickets (e.g open returns, season tickets, DSP free travel) can also pre-book their Intercity reservations during these dates at no charge on the website, or by phone at (01) 8366222
  • Seating will be unassigned, and customers are asked not to sit in seating designated as restricted, to ensure appropriate distancing
  • Face coverings are mandatory on public transport and in stations
  • Irish Rail are continuing to implement enhanced cleaning and sanitisation measures on trains and at stations, with a focus on customer touchpoints.
  • Catering services remain suspended on board Intercity, and alcohol is prohibited on all trains
  • Revised schedules are in place from Christmas Eve 24th December to New Year’s Day 1st January inclusive, and customers should check times. There are no rail services on Christmas Day and St Stephen’s Day.

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