The difference between self-isolating and restricted movements

You must self isolate (stay in your room) when you:

You must restrict your movements (stay at home) when you:

  • are a close contact of COVID-19
  • live with someone who has symptoms of COVID-19
  • arrive in Ireland from another country unless you're coming from a green or orange region or from Northern Ireland

The following table shows how to self-isolate or restrict your movements.

Differences Self-isolate
(stay in your room)
Restrict your movements
(stay at home)
Differences Where Self-isolate (stay in your room) In a room on your own with a window you can open Restrict your movements (stay at home) At home or indoors
Differences Work or school Self-isolate (stay in your room) Do not go to work or school. If you feel well, work or study in your room. Restrict your movements (stay at home) Do not go to work unless you work on your own. If you are an essential worker with no symptoms, talk to your employer.
Do not go to school.
Differences Outdoor exercise Self-isolate (stay in your room) In your own outdoor space away from other people Restrict your movements (stay at home) By yourself, keeping 2 metres away from other people
Differences Going out Self-isolate (stay in your room) Stay in your room as much as possible. Do not go out for anything other than fresh air or exercise. Restrict your movements (stay at home) Do not go to the shops or pharmacy. Order groceries online or have family or friends drop them off.
Differences Visits Self-isolate (stay in your room) Do not have visitors at your home. Do not visit others. Restrict your movements (stay at home) Do not have visitors at your home. Do not visit others.
Differences People you live with Self-isolate (stay in your room) Must restrict their movements and get a test for COVID-19 Restrict your movements (stay at home) Must restrict their movements if you get symptoms of COVID-19

Last updated: 23 February 2021 at 11.05am