How to apply

To get your Public Services Card, you must do the following:


1) Book a face-to-face registration appointment by availing of one of the following options

2) Bring certain documents to your face-to-face appointment

  • Evidence of identity
    • Irish citizens born in Ireland – Current Irish passport or current Irish or UK driving licence or Irish learner driver permit. If you are adopted, please bring your adoption certificate with you.
    • Irish citizens born in Northern Ireland and UK citizens – Current passport, or your birth or adoption certificate and current driving licence*
    • Irish citizens via naturalisation or Foreign Birth Registration – Current Irish passport or Certificate of Naturalisation or Foreign Birth Registration Certificate and Irish or UK driving licence or Irish learner driver permit.
    • EU citizens (other than Irish and UK) – Current passport or national identity card
    • Non-EU citizens – Current passport or 1951 travel document

*If you are an Irish or UK citizen and do not have a passport or driving licence as identification, you may still be issued with a Public Services Card. Additional information which can be verified to confirm your identity may be gathered at your appointment interview.

For Irish citizens born in Ireland, birth details can be verified online in most cases with the General Register Office. However, in some cases, it is not possible to locate the birth registration, so the person will need to return with a copy of his/her birth certificate.

If you wish to get a copy of your Irish birth certificate for SAFE registration purposes, you can get it from the Registrar at a reduced rate when you show your SAFE invitation letter.

The Department does not have access to the adoption register, so adopted people should bring their adoption certificate with them when attending their appointment.

  • Evidence of address (applies to everyone, whether an Irish, EU or non-EU citizen):
    • A household utility bill
    • An official letter/document
    • A financial statement
    • Property lease or tenancy agreement
    • Confirmation of address by a third party such as a school principal/administrator, accommodation/property owner*or manager.

You need to show evidence of your address. You can use any of the above documents to do this (it must show your name and address).

*If you are staying with friends or relatives an original household bill plus a note from the bill holder confirming your residency at the bill address is acceptable. This note can be written on the bill itself.

  • Additional helpful documents 

If you have any of the items listed above you should bring them along with you as they may also help to confirm your identity. If you do not have any of these, you should bring other documents or forms of photo ID instead. The following items are not acceptable as proof of identity for the purpose of SAFE registration: Baptismal certificate, work ID card, Garda form ML-10, Garda age card, photocopied certificates or documents and expired documents generally.

3) Should bring your mobile phone to your appointment although this is optional.

  • You should also bring your mobile phone to the appointment although this is not required. By bringing your mobile phone with you and allowing that mobile phone number to be associated with you, you enable an easier method of initially verifying your MyGovID for online services.
  • You will need a phone verification to access public services online.

4) Attend the Public Services Card face-to-face registration appointment.

  • Attend your face-to-face registration appointment. This registration takes approximately 15 minutes to complete (once all documentation is provided). During this appointment your photograph will be taken and your signature recorded for your new Public Services Card, which will be posted to you. You will also be asked for the answers to some security questions.

5) Receive your Public Services Card by post

  • Receive your Public Services Card by post in about 5-7 working days at the address you supplied.


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