New safety guidelines for nightclubs, live events, bars and restaurants will be published today.
The Taoiseach told a meeting of his party last night the guidance for venues reopening on Friday would be practical and common sense will apply.
Today’s updated guidelines are expected to permit the multiple booking of tables in bars and restaurants.
It is also likely that table service will continue in bars but socially distanced queues will be allowed at bar counters.
However, people will not be able to congregate there and the move is aimed at addressing staffing shortages.
Allowing people to stand at live events could involve some limit on capacity, along with both ticketing and Covid-19 cert requirements.
Talks between officials and industry representatives on these issues have been described as constructive.
The Licensed Vintners Association said it hopes to have clarity on the reopening guidelines for late bars and nightclubs by this evening.
Its Chief Executive Donall O’Keeffe described it as a “ridiculous” and “chaotic” situation, where after such a long closure they do not have the guidelines on reopening.
It is important, he said, that bar counter service is permitted as it is at the core of service provided in late bars and nightclubs.
He said the sector welcomed increased regulation of Covid certs, saying it is clear there will be more attention on this in this next stage of reopening.