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  • Writer's pictureNicole Lawrence

Tips For A Terrific First Trip To Ireland

Updated: Jun 21, 2022

You've put off visiting the Cliffs of Moher, Killarney National Park, and Blarney Castle long enough.

It's finally time to take that trip to Ireland!

We applaud that decision, but before you book that brewery tour or get too excited about visiting Dublin's Grafton Street, here are a few tips to make a more enjoyable trip.

Consider Car Travel

The best sites in the Emerald Isle are seen via public transportation or tour buses, but renting a car is not a bad idea to get to those obscure sites.

Be sure the vehicle you rent is small, as rural roads in Ireland are narrow.

Oh, and the Irish drive on the left side of the road and pass on the right.

Tax-Free Shopping!

All those goodies you'll find to buy on Grafton Street are tax-free!

That's right, travelers who live outside the European Union can shop tax-free in Ireland.

Make sure to apply for a Fexco Horizon Card before your trip so you can register and swipe it in affiliated stores in the country and claim sales tax back on the purchases.

Differing Currencies

And while we're on the topic of shopping, it's important to note that, as part of the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland uses the pound sterling rather than the euro.

Dress Appropriately

Irish weather is not extreme, but the country does get a lot of rain, particularly along its west coast.

And if you're traveling to Ireland during winter, know that the season's days are short.

The sun rises at about 8 a.m. and sets at about 4 p.m., which means you have to cram a lot of sightseeing into a few hours.

But during summer, the sunsets are as late as 10 p.m.

Be mindful of these seasonal changes, pack light layers of clothing and a pair of rain boots or waterproof shoes, and you should be just fine.

Public Transportation Pointers

The trains in Ireland carry you in comfort, but they are pricey.

So if you intend to travel on one during your trip, make sure to book it in advance to take advantage of the online discounts that the Irish Rail offers.

If you choose to travel by bus, be aware that you must flag the bus to get it to stop.

Heritage Cards Are Helpful

If you plan to visit the country's many cultural attractions, picking up a Heritage Card from the Office of Public Works is a great idea.

This card entitles you to free admission to all heritage sites managed by the state for an entire year.

These sites include castles and national parks.

If you're not quite sure where to start planning, we'd love to help you. We work with many different budgets and styles of travel. Reach out today to arrange a quick 15-minute chat at a time that suits you.

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