If you have refugee status, subsidiary protection or have been granted residence based on being a family member of a refugee or a person with subsidiary protection status you may qualify for a travel document to allow you to travel outside of Ireland. If you have been recognised as stateless, you will also qualify for a travel document. In exceptional circumstances, migrants with other residency permissions may be granted a temporary travel document.
The application form and guidelines for applying for a travel document are available on the INIS website. The cost of a travel document is €80. The INIS website notes that applications for Travel Documents are taking up to 16 weeks to process so please ensure that you apply well in advance of any planned travel.
1951 Convention Travel Documents - Refugees
If you have refugee status, you qualify for a 1951 Convention Travel Document. A 1951 Convention Travel Document gives you certain benefits including the ability to travel to certain countries without a visa. If you are travelling to Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden or Switzerland you do not need a visa for a short-stay (90 days or less). Holders of Geneva Convention Travel Documents from these countries do not need visas to enter Ireland for short stays of 90 days or less.
Temporary Travel Documents
If you do not have refugee status or have been recognised as a person eligible for subsidiary protection and you do not have a national passport, the State may, in some very exceptional cases, issue you with a temporary travel document. This may be to allow you to access urgent medical treatment abroad or to help you apply for a national passport from your country of nationality. Many of Nasc’s clients experience difficulties if their passports expire as many countries do not have an embassy or a consulate in Ireland or, even if they do, they cannot print passports in Ireland. We strongly recommend ensuring that you make arrangements to have your passport renewed well in advance of its expiry.
If you are applying for a temporary travel document, you will need to provide detailed reasons as to why you do not have a national passport and what efforts you have made to try to get a national passport. You will need to show that you have made efforts to obtain a national passport and that you has been formally and unreasonably refused by your country of origin.
Examples of the evidence that you should provide with your form includes:
- Details of the efforts you made to obtain a passport – letters/faxes/phone calls or emails to Embassy or relevant agencies seeking a passport;
- Evidence that the country you have requested the passport from will not issue you with a passport unless you present in person at an Embassy or at a passport office in your country of nationality – letters/faxes/emails from the Embassy addressed to you requiring you to travel to apply for a passport;
- Details of the efforts you made to obtain a temporary travel document or laissez-passer from your country of nationality and evidence that this request has been refused.
The Irish Department of Foreign Affairs publishes a Diplomatic List of all of the embassies and consulates accredited to Ireland. This list is updated regularly and is a useful resource to get information on where your nearest embassy is located.
If you have been issued with permission to remain in the State on the condition that it will only be renewed once you can provide an up to date passport, we strongly recommend that you begin the process of applying for your passport as soon as possible. It may take a number of months for you to gather the relevant evidence and the application process for the travel document may also take several months.