COVID-19 and Oideas Gael’s Summer Programme 2021

We know that many people would like to attend an Oideas Gael course this summer, if possible, and we would like to welcome you to the Donegal Gaeltacht again. Our courses will proceed if they can do so in line with Government of Ireland health advice at the time.

The situation is evolving: strict restrictions on travel and gatherings of people are currently in place in Ireland. New variants of COVID-19 are a cause for concern on the one hand while more widespread vaccination offers hope on the other. The truth is that it’s not possible yet to make predictions about the summer with any certainty. So far, Oideas Gael has taken the following decisions:

  • We will focus on providing online courses during the period from May-early July.
  • No indoor courses will proceed prior to July 10th.
  • We hope that most outdoor courses (e.g. Hill Walking, Exploring the Environment) can proceed throughout the summer, subject to public health advice at the time.
  • We hope that most language and cultural courses will proceed from July 10th onwards, if public health advice allows. If not, we will offer online alternatives.

This page offers further information that may be helpful as you make your summer plans. We will update it as new information becomes available.

Bookings and refunds

Rest assured that if you book a course now and you cannot later attend due to COVID-related restrictions (in Donegal or in the area you are travelling from) we will refund you the course fee in full. This was our policy throughout 2020 and it allowed our participants to make plans with peace of mind.

Travel to Ireland from abroad

All participants at Oideas Gael courses must comply fully with Government of Ireland public health guidance and be able to provide proof of same. At present, the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs advises against non-essential travel from many countries. Neither vaccination status nor negative tests for COVID-19 necessarily exempt travellers from all quarantine requirements, though this may change in the future. Please see the DFA Travel Advice for the latest information relating to your country of residence.

Course format

There will likely be some changes to the format of our courses this summer. It’s not possible to be too specific at this stage, but these would likely include restrictions on the number of people attending each course and in each classroom as well as requirements in terms of social distancing and mask wearing. There may be restrictions on the number and types of evening events we can provide to participants throughout the week. Despite this, we will endeavour to make your experience as enjoyable as possible and, of course, there is always lots to explore in the wonderful Glen!