Minister for justice Frances Fitzgerald has confirmed that the joint-visa waiver scheme between Ireland and the UK is set to launch. The two governments are due to fomally approve the scheme within the next week.
The scheme will mean that visitors from outside the European Union will be able to move freely between Ireland and the UK using one visa. If they have an Irish visa, they will not need a British one to visit the UK and vice versa.
This is good news for tourism as visitors travelling from further afield may now be more likely to include two destinations on their itineraries instead of one. Visitors from China and India, both important emerging tourism markets for Ireland, will be the first to benefit from this scheme.
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The tourism industry has welcomed the scheme, with Tourism Ireland previously saying they would be working closely with their counterparts in VisitBritain to promote the scheme abroad.