Ireland

5 M
Population
Euro
Currency
When is the best time to visit Ireland?
  • The very best time to go is from May to July (neither hot nor cold)
  • A good time to go is from May to September (if you pack the right clothes)
  • This is purely from a climate point of view of course.
Safety and security

Crime

Most visitors to Ireland experience no difficulties during their stay. Take sensible precautions to protect yourself from bag snatching and pick pocketing. Try to avoid carrying valuables and large sums of money. Make sure your vehicle is properly secured, and where possible park in secure parking areas.  Most incidents occur in the Dublin area. If you need to contact the emergency services call 112.

The Irish Tourist Assistance Service (ITAS) offers free support and practical help to victims of crime. This includes liaison with travel companies and financial institutions and, in emergency situations, arranging accommodation, meals and transport. ITAS recommends that you report any incident in person to the nearest Garda (Police) Station who will then contact the organisation.

Road travel

In 2015 there were 166 road deaths in Ireland (source: Department for Transport). This equates to 3.6 road deaths per 100,000 of population and compares to the UK average of 2.8 road deaths per 100,000 of population in 2015.

Don’t drink and drive. You may be heavily penalised or even imprisoned if you are found driving over the limit. New legal limits were introduced in October 2011. The new limit is 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood (0.05%) for fully licensed drivers, and 20mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood (0.02%) for professional, learner and novice drivers. The police conduct random breath-tests on drivers. Holding and using a mobile phone whilst driving is banned.

If you relocate to Ireland you must register your vehicle within a week of arriving. Your car may be impounded if you fail to do so. 

See the European Commission, AA and RAC guides on driving in Ireland.

Terrorism

There is an underlying threat from terrorism. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers.

There is considered to be a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals, from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria. You should be vigilant at this time.

Find out more about the global threat from terrorism, how to minimise your risk and what to do in the event of a terrorist attack.

Local laws and customs

Don’t become involved with drugs of any kind. Possession of even small quantities can lead to a long term of imprisonment. Don’t offer to carry any items for anyone else when entering or leaving Ireland.

Entry requirements

The information on this page covers the most common types of travel and reflects the UK government’s understanding of the rules currently in place. Unless otherwise stated, this information is for travellers using a full ‘British Citizen’ passport.

The authorities in the country or territory you’re travelling to are responsible for setting and enforcing the rules for entry. If you’re unclear about any aspect of the entry requirements, or you need further reassurance, you’ll need to contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to.

You should also consider checking with your transport provider or travel company to make sure your passport and other travel documents meet their requirements.

Ireland, along with the UK, is a member of the Common Travel Area. British nationals travelling from the UK don’t need a passport to visit Ireland. However, Irish immigration officers will check the ID of all passengers arriving by air from the UK and may ask for proof of nationality, particularly if you were born outside the UK. You are therefore advised to take your British passport with you.

For more information about the types of ID you might be asked to present, see the website of the Ireland Citizens Information Board.

Before travelling, check with your carrier about their ID requirements, as most airlines and other transport providers won’t carry passengers to and from Ireland unless they’ve seen satisfactory photographic ID.

Passport validity

If you’re using a passport to enter Ireland, it should be valid for the proposed duration of your stay; you don’t need any additional period of validity on your passport beyond this.

UK Emergency Travel Documents

UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are accepted for entry into, transit through, and exit from Ireland.

Health

Visit your health professional at least 4 to 6 weeks before your trip to check whether you need any vaccinations or other preventive measures. Country specific information and advice is published by the National Travel Health Network and Centre on the TravelHealthPro website and by NHS (Scotland) on the fitfortravel website. Useful information and advice about healthcare abroad is also available on the NHS Choices website.

If you’re visiting Ireland you should get a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before leaving the UK. The EHIC isn’t a substitute for medical and travel insurance, but it entitles you to state provided medical treatment that may become necessary during your trip. Any treatment provided is on the same terms as Irish nationals. If you don’t have your EHIC with you or you’ve lost it, you should present proof that you’re ordinarily resident in the UK. Alternatively, you can call the Department of Health Overseas Healthcare Team (+44 191 218 1999) to get a Provisional Replacement Certificate. The EHIC won’t cover medical repatriation, ongoing medical treatment or non-urgent treatment, so you should make sure you have adequate travel insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment and repatriation.

If you need emergency medical assistance during your trip, dial 112 and ask for an ambulance. If you are referred to a medical facility for treatment you should contact your insurance/medical assistance company immediately.

Money

The currency of Ireland is the Euro.

Check before you travel that your bank cash card can be used in ATM machines in Ireland.