PATRONS will now need a ticket to get into nightclubs and live events, with the new controls to be introduced next week.
n final guidelines published on Friday night, the Government has made admission tickets a requirement, rather than a recommendation.
Minister Catherine Martin’s Department said in a statement:
“Ticketing is required, for the purposes of contact tracing, for all nightclubs and venues and will be the subject of regulations to be put in place next week.”
An earlier version of the guidelines said events should be ticketed “as far as possible” to facilitate contact tracing.
Patrons issued tickets will now be told their contact details will be kept for a month (28 days) to facilitate contact tracing.
Tickets issued digitally and held on mobile phones will be scanned by ticket-takers or stewards wearing face masks and gloves.
The patrons will also have to produce evidence of vaccination, which may also be on their mobile phones and which could delay processing.
The new moves came after even young people claimed the opening of nightclubs could make them hotbeds for the spread of the Delta variant of Covid-19.
Tickets up to now were to apply only to the live gig sector, where people would play to attend in advance – rather than the more abrupt decision to go on to a nightclub from a licensed premises.
The guidelines say tickets should be secured in advance, where possible. It is not clear if they can be obtained at a premises before entry, which could lead to queuing.
Customer names and telephone numbers will be requested as part of the sale of the ticket. It could also mean patrons being asked to provide proof of identity.
A spokesman for the Minister said details of the new regulations around ticketing would be issued next week.
Minister Catherine Martin said: “Covid is still a real threat to our society and the safety guidelines are necessary to balance public health while also facilitating the reopening of all sectors.
“In a new and complex phase of the pandemic, there is an onus on all of us to take personal responsibility for our actions to ensure this reopening is safe and successful.
“The safe and viable return of the night time economy has been greatly anticipated, and welcomed by businesses and thousands of staff who bring Ireland’s cultural and nightlife economy to life.
“Nightclub and live entertainment venues can return to welcoming customers however, it is vitally important that each venue operator utilises their skilled health and safety expertise, and exercises judgement and caution.”
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