Business Covid Support

The Outdoor Seating and Accessories for Tourism & Hospitality Business Scheme

The Outdoor Seating and Accessories for Tourism & Hospitality Business Scheme is now open for applications

Grants of up to 75%(ex-VAT) of the cost of qualifying outdoor equipment purchased are available from your local council. Maximum allowable grant is capped at €4,000.

Who is eligible? The scheme is open to attractions, hotels, restaurants, cafes, public houses or other tourism and hospitality business establishments where food is sold for consumption on the premises. Those premises that have no commercial rates outstanding to Donegal County Council or have a payment plan in place.

What items are considered eligible under the Scheme?

  • Tables
  • Chairs
  • Umbrellas
  • Electric heaters
  • Screens/windbreaks
  • Plant stands
  • Wooden Platform

The tables and chairs or other furniture shall be of robust and stable construction to prevent movement in adverse weather conditions and should be agreed with Donegal County Council.

Screens/windbreakers must be agreed with Donegal County Council and will be subject to the following conditions:

  • Screens to be plain, coloured or neutral canvas type, not more than 1 metre high, spanning between or framed by simple metal type posts.
  • Screens to be manufactured from flame/fire retardant material.
  • Base plates or weighted bases to screening posts must not extend outside the licensed area.
  • All screens, posts and bases must be demountable.
  • Screens must be sufficiently robust to prevent overturning in adverse weather conditions.
  • No advertising apart from the name of the premises to be used on the screens, without the permission of Donegal County Council.

Application forms can be downloaded here Failte Ireland Outdoor Seating Accessories Scheme – Application Form (2)  Completed applications to submitted by email to:  [email protected]

Applications are open until 30th September. For more information on the scheme, please visit Donegal County Council (

Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme
  • The Employment Wage Support Scheme will replace the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme from 1 September and will run to June 2021
  • Businesses that have seen a 30% reduction in turnover will receive a flat rate subsidy per week per employee
  • New and seasonal employees will be eligible for the scheme
  • New companies operating in sectors adversely impacted by COVID-19 will qualify for the payment

Further information is available at:

Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS)

This scheme provides a weekly cash payment(Advance Credit for Trading Expenses – ACTE) to businesses that are temporarily closed or businesses whose trade has been significantly impacted as a result of the public health restrictions.
The scheme will be available when Level 3 or higher restrictions are in place.

Eligible businesses:
In order to qualify you must meet the following conditions

  1. The business must be temporarily closed or substantially restricted in operating and the restrictions directly prohibit /restrict access by customers.
  2. Weekly turnover must be down 75% or more in comparison to the weekly average turnover in 2019. *
  3. The business must have a valid tax clearance.

*For new businesses that commenced trading between 26/12/2029 & 12/10/2020, the turnover test will be applied by reference to the average weekly turnover in the period from 26/12/2019 to 12/10/2020.

How much is available under the scheme:
The weekly credit will be calculated by reference to the average weekly turnover(VAT exclusive)

  • 10% of the average weekly turnover so long as it does not exceed €20,000
  • 5% of the average weekly turnover that exceeds €20,000

The maximum weekly amount available will be capped at €5,000

Should you have any queries, or believe that you are eligible for the CRSS scheme, please contact our office.


Part Time Job Incentive for the Self-Employed(PTSE)

This support relates to self-employed individuals coming off the PUP payment and commencing to earn again.
The Part-Time Job Incentive Scheme for the Self-Employed (PTSE) is a new scheme for self-employed people. It provides income support to self-employed people who will lose their PUP payment if they earn over €960 over 8 weeks.

PTSE is paid instead of your PUP or jobseeker’s payment. It is paid at a lower rate, but there is no limit on the amount you can earn.

You cannot work more than 24 hours per week with the PTSE.

For more information on the scheme, please visit

Small Business Assistance Scheme for COVID (SBASC)

The CBAS scheme has just been announced and its aimed at businesses who to date have not been eligible for the CRSS or Failte Ireland Business Continuity Scheme.

Eligible businesses will receive a payment of €4,000 for Quarter 1 of 2021. There will be a second payment of €4,000 for businesses continuing to meet the criteria, from May 2021

Eligibility Conditions:

  • Reduction in average weekly turnover by at least 75%. (In comparison to to 2019 weekly turnover or for businesses that commenced after 01/11/2019  projected average weekly turnover for 01/01/2021 to 30/06/2021)
  • Minimum turnover €50,000.
  • The Scheme is open to firms that currently employ less than 250 people and with current turnover of less than €25m;
  • You must be in receipt of a rates bill from your local authority for the premises which the business operates from.
  • Current tax clearance certificate from Revenue.
  • Business is not owned or operated by a public body.
  • The business intends to resume trading in full once Government restrictions are eased.

Closing date for the first round of the scheme is 21st April, 2021. No applications for Q1 will be accepted after this date.

You can apply online through your local authority. Please refer to the following link for application form & frequently asked questions.

Trading Online Voucher Scheme

A Trading Online Voucher Scheme worth up to €2,500 (10% co funding is required) is available to help small businesses get online / develop their website. the scheme is available to businesses with less than 10 employees, turnover less than €2 million and trading for at least 6 months.

To avail of the scheme you must attend a short webinar hosted by the local enterprise office and obtain voucher approval prior to incurring any expense.

please refer to the following link for more information: Trading Online Voucher – Local Enterprise Office – Donegal

Credit Guarantee Scheme CGS

The COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme Term Loan is a variable rate loan for businesses who have been impacted by COVID-19.

The Scheme will be available until 30th June 2021 on a first-come, first-served basis. The Scheme is made available by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation and operated by the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI). 

Key features

  • Loans offered under the Scheme are for terms of between one and five and a half years.
  • A Guarantee for a percentage of the loan is provided for facilities from €10,000 to €1 million. The aggregate of all facilities granted to a particular qualifying/participating enterprise may not exceed €1 million.
  • The Scheme is aimed to help businesses that have experienced an adverse impact of a minimum of 15% in actual or projected turnover or profit, due to the impact of COVID-19.
  • Eligible purposes under the Scheme include:
    • Working Capital;
    • Investment
    • Refinance of existing COVID-19 related debt;
      • Refinance of non-COVID-19 related debt is not permitted under the Scheme 
  • No security will be required for loans up to €250,000.

If you wish to apply for the CGS loan, please contact our office for further assistance. 

Microfinance Ireland COVID-19 Business Loan

The COVID-19 Business Loan from Microfinance Ireland is available to support microenterprises through the current period of uncertainty.

Further information is available at:

SBCI COVID 19 Working Capital Scheme

Applications for the SBCI COVID 19 working capital scheme are now being accepted through the SBCI website.

Loans of €25,000 up to €1.5 million can be applied for under the scheme.

Interest rates charged are at the discretion of the participating bank but is limited at a maximum of 4%.

Further information is available at:

InterTradeIreland Emergency Business Solutions

Professional advice, to the value of £2,000/€2,250 inc VAT (100% funded), is available for cross-border companies to address key business challenges related to Covid-19.

Funding is available for supports in the following areas:

  1. Finances. (Guidance & direction to relevant government supports, loan supports & emergency cash flow)
  2. Staff Training. (Completion of Covid-19 risk assessments, recruitment & remote working, impact of covid-19 on health & wellbeing)
  3. HR and Health & Safety. (HR issues, business risk/health & safety)
  4. Product. (Diversification & reposition your business strategy)

Eligibility criteria:

  • Be an indigenous business registered in Ireland or Northern Ireland.
  • Trade across the border (NI/ROI).
  •  Employ less than 250 employees.
  • Have an annual turnover of less than €50m (Stg equivalent).
  • Have a satisfactory trading history.

Note: Ineligible Sectors: Businesses involved in primary agriculture, tourism and hospitality.

This funding is provided under the European Commission Regulation on De Minimis Aid as stated in the application form. The business must provide InterTradeIreland with details of all other De Minimis aid which has been granted to the business within the past three years. It should be noted that a false declaration by a business resulting in the threshold of €200,000 being exceeded could later give rise to the aid being recovered with interest.

If you wish to apply for the scheme, please contact our office for further information. 

Pandemic Unemployment Payment

The PUP is a social welfare payment for employees and self employed people who have lost all their employment due to the COVID-19 public health emergency. The scheme has been extended until June 2021 but will be reduced and split into three separate tiers from 17 September. The new rates are:

  • €203 for those who earned less than €200
  • €250 for those who earned between €200 and €299.99
  • €300 for those who earned between €300 and €399.99
  • €350 for those who earned €400 or more.

If you are self employed, you can earn up to €960 over 8 weeks and keep your PUP payment

Open for new applications and will continue to be paid until 30th June 2021.

Download Application form

VAT Rate Change

The standard rate of VAT will cut from 23% to 21% for six months from September 2020 to February 2021

Further information is available at:

Reminder: the standard rate of Irish VAT is due to revert from 21% to 23% with effect from 1 March 2021. There has been no indication that government intend to extend the reduction and therefore businesses should prepare for the 23% rate applying from 1 March 2021 onwards.

July Stimulus Package

On 23rd July, the government announced the July stimulus package in their response to the COVID 19 crisis. The package will help get Irelands businesses back up and running and get people back at work.

Further information is available at:

Restart Grant

The Restart Grant & Restart Plus scheme gives grants to businesses to help them reopen their premises and get back to work. In order to qualify businesses must have experienced a 25%+ reduction in turnover between 01/04/20 – 30/06/20 & be a commercial entity liable for local authority rates. 

Applications for this scheme are now closed. 

Further information is available at:

Enterprise Support Grant

The Enterprise Support Grant applications are now open.
This grant is only available to businesses that are not liable for commercial rates
The maximum available grant is €1,000 & you must have valid invoices & receipts to support your claim.

Eligibility criteria: 

  • You must have been in receipt of the COVID 19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment OR Jobseeker’s Benefit/Allowance & have closed your claim.
  • You must have operated a business prior to March 2020 that closed because of COVID 19 Pandemic & has since reopened.
  • Employ fewer than 10 people and annual turnover of less than €1 million.
  • You must be tax compliant – Tax clearance certificate required.

Eligible Costs:
Costs that are covered: Capital, Repairs, Business training, Advertising & marketing, Salaries, Fuel, Accountancy Services, Legal services, Public liability & indemnity insurance costs.

Download Application form

Supports for businesses impacted by COVID 19

This booklet details the key supports and resources available to help businesses impacted by COVID 19.(Updated 15/09/20)

Download Booklet