Whether you’re thinking of living in Ireland for 3 months or longer, there are some important things you need to know before going ahead with your plan. These tips will make your experience of moving to Ireland and settling there smoother and more enjoyable.
Below, we provide you with all the key facts you should be armed with before packing your bags. And as an aside, don't forget to bring a good camera to capture the spectacular sights you'll come across while living in this beautiful green country!
Read more: What Is the Best Time To Visit Ireland?
Short Stay Visas (Less Than 3 Months)
Before sending in an application for a short stay ‘C’ visa, it is important to make sure that you familiarize yourself with the benefits you can get from acquiring this type of visa, and of course, what requirements you need to satisfy to qualify for one.
Policy to Consider for Short Stay ‘C’ Visas
When applying for a short stay "C" visa, you have to prove that you have sufficiently strong family, economic, or social ties to your home country. This is important, as it demonstrates that you have no intention to stay in Ireland longer than you declare. The maximum stay permitted under Ireland’s short stay "C" visa is 90 days. So, this is a viable option for those considering living in Ireland for 3 months, but not beyond.
The items you can use as proof include, but not are limited to: real estate properties, cars, businesses, offspring, and a permanent job. But of course, proving that you have the aforementioned things doesn't guarantee your approval for visa -- it still depends on the immigration officer's decision whether they will grant you a visa, ask for more proofs/documents, or deny your application outright.
Housing in Ireland
You will have a lot of options when it comes to the type of accommodation you can buy or rent, whether you're seeking an apartment, a house, or just a room. Renting your own private bedroom in a shared house is probably the most common option when only living in Ireland for 3 months, especially if you are alone in a bigger city, where the rent is usually more expensive.
Rental and house prices differ widely across the country depending on their location. Of course, while the rent in cities like Dublin is higher than in other parts of the country, it also comes with more convenient access to amenities and an outstanding transportation system. The housing market is a lot cheaper in more rural areas. Be ready for options to get snatched on a first-come, first-served basis, so be practical whenever you make inquiries and try to arrange viewings.
Renting in Ireland
A Tenancy Agreement is an officially and legally binding contract signed by both the owner of the property and yourself as the tenant. This contract sets out all the terms, including the rental cost, the lease duration, and what penalties apply if the terms are broken by either party. Although a tenancy contract is usually drawn for 6 or 12 months, it’s not impossible to find owners who will agree to a 3-month lease for those planning on living in Ireland for 3 months.
Just like in any other European cities, it’s not difficult to find rentals. You can simply do an online search. There are several sites that let you search by price and area, and of course by type of accommodation.
Note that accommodations offered for rent in Ireland are usually semi or fully furnished.
There are also agents who can help you look for the perfect home. In addition, they might also offer management, administrative, and other useful services. But of course, be ready to pay some extra fee for that convenience.
Normally, bills may include electricity, the internet, gas, water, phone, and waste management. It is important for you to be aware of the bills you will need to settle during your stay.
When you apply to rent accommodation in the country, you might be asked for the following documents:
- Proof of employment, which includes an address and contact number to verify employment
- Prior landlord reference, which includes an address and contact number
- Valid identification card to prove your identity
- Bank information, to show that you have the financial means to rent the property
Renting and Your Rights
Ireland offers strong protection laws for tenants, and it is important to be aware of your rights. Some of the key points include:
- The price of rent can’t be changed to a different amount after the contract is signed
- The length of the stay can't be changed after the contract is signed
- Depending on the agreement, you will likely need to give prior notice before leaving the place
- The rental cost shouldn’t be beyond the market rate
When you rent a place, you’ll normally have to pay a security deposit. This fee is returned to you in full when the contract ends, unless you broke the terms. Property owners can deduct from security deposits when the tenant breaks or damages something on the property, leaves bills unpaid, or if they steal or take anything out.
If you arrive in Ireland without a plan for where to stay, you may want to find temporary accommodation for your first days. You’ve got a lot of options when it comes to temporary accommodation. In addition to the usual hotels and hostels, you can check out popular short-term apartment rental sites like Booking.com and Airbnb.
Staying in these types of accommodations could be a nice way for you to experience living like a local and discover different neighborhoods in your new city while arranging a viewing schedule for your temporary home.
Dublin has an exceptional and affordable transportation system that includes taxis, trains, buses, and trams. There’s also a cheap public bicycle sharing system you may want to try.
Every city and town in the country also has a good rail and bus network, as well as other transportation options.
The big decision you need to make about getting around in Ireland is whether you want to travel by car or use public transport. If you think that buying or renting a cheap car is better even if you're only going to be living in Ireland for 3 months, then you'll be saving a lot of time by avoiding shared transportation, and it will be easier for you to access remote places.
That said, the bus system, which is made up of a combination of private and public operators, is widespread and generally quite cheap – although the rides can be slow and the journeys long. The rail system is faster, but is more limited and only serves some big cities and towns. Both trains and buses fill up pretty fast in peak season. You will have to book earlier in order to secure a seat.
Importing a Car into Ireland
Unless you stay in Ireland with your car for more than 12 months, then you are exempted from paying Vehicle Registration Tax and having to register it. Foreign-registered cars can be imported into Ireland temporarily by non-residents without the obligation to pay VRT or register the vehicle. For more information, visit Ireland's Revenue website.
If you’re going to be living in Ireland for 3 months and will therefore be exempted from paying the VRT, note however that you will not be allowed to sell your car, unless you stay there for over 12 months and get the vehicle registered. If you do pay VRT, then you will be allowed to sell your vehicle in the country once it is registered.
If you have questions about VRT exemptions, transfer of residence, or any other appeals or information, make sure to check this link.
Visitors from certain countries might be entitled to the country’s free public health services. Particularly, citizens of other European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) member states who stay in Ireland temporarily can receive free medical care if they fall sick or get into an accident.
Those who come to live, study, or work in Ireland for a longer time or who decide to retire to Ireland are very likely to be considered residents there, even if they're only living there temporarily. As a result, these people should be entitled to health services and medical cards.
If you're only living in Ireland for 3 months, then you are regarded as a visitor to Ireland and you are not entitled to avail of free public health services. Generally, if you need to use the local health services, you will have to bear the full cost of the services provided to you.
In that case, getting an international travel medical insurance is a must to cover you in the event of an illness or accident that could carry very heavy costs and ruin your stay. We use and recommend SafetyWing, a flexible and affordable provider that can protect you against mishaps from just $1.32 per day. They have a convenient monthly pay-as-you-go subscription option, and if you're traveling with your family, each parent can add a child under 10 years old on their insurance at no extra cost (up to 2 per family).
Ireland offers breathtaking scenery. The countryside is nothing but idyllic open landscapes. In fact, it is probably one of the greenest countries in the entire world! It’s a paradise for relaxing your tired eyes and mind. Rolling hills, singing birds, and the smell of exquisite flowers will stimulate and soothe all of your senses.
If that’s not enough, there are also many majestic old castles, ruins, and towers to visit! And the Irish culture is just as fascinating, with mysterious Celtic legends and rich traditions to learn about.
Read more: 10 Exciting Things To Do In Ireland
As you already know by now, living in Ireland for 3 months (or even more) is certainly a good idea. With its beauty, convenience, generous people, and the amazing sights and activities it offers, you're bound to have an amazing time here.
So, what are your thoughts about leaving your own country to live in Ireland for a while? Let ForTravelista know in a comment below!