If you're planning on moving to Ireland, here are our ten ways to prepare yourself for the culture shock you might experience on the Emerald Isle.
Ireland is a beautiful country full of rich history and culture and welcoming and friendly people. If you've made the decision to move to the Emerald Isle, there are a few culture shocks you are going to want to prepare for.
10. Familiarise Yourself With The Irish Language
While English is the predominant language in Ireland, Irish is the official first language. As such, you'll see the language everywhere.
Whether it's street names, first names, or Irish surnames, it's best to familiarise yourself with Ireland's native language to save yourself some trouble.
9. The Accents
Just like the language itself, some Irish accents can be quite difficult to understand for those who aren't familiar with it.
While you'll hear everybody speaking English, there are many dialects throughout the country, so watch some Irish television and listen to Irish radio to try and get to know the accents a little more before making the move to Ireland.
8. The Weather
Ireland is a notoriously rainy country, so depending on where you are moving from, be prepared for constant rain throughout the country.
The best way to prepare for the weather in Ireland is by packing appropriate clothing. We recommend a good quality raincoat, decent walking boats, and plenty of warm clothes, especially when you're moving from a country that remains hot all year round.
7. The Food
Irish food in itself is known for being quite bland. However, in the bigger cities in Ireland, like Dublin, Galway, or Belfast, for example, an increase in diversity has meant that the food in Ireland is becoming much more culturally diverse, meaning every day, there are more options available to you.
So, don't worry about options when moving to Ireland. Some Irish foods are truly delicious, like a traditional stew, a homemade soda bread, or the up-and-coming boxty. However, if you need some home comforts, they won't be too hard to find, especially if you're moving to a bigger city.
Tipping in Ireland isn't as much of a thing as it is in the likes of America. However, with that said, it is always appreciated. Generally, if you have had good service, you should tip your servers around 10%.
This shows that you are grateful for the quality of service that is provided and reflects your appreciation. It is also up to you if you'd like to tip taxi drivers, delivery drivers, or other people providing services, like hairdressers.
5. Politeness And Manners
Saying 'please' and 'thank you' is a big thing in Ireland. If you don't say please when asking for something or thank you when you get it, it can come across as very rude.
In some languages, 'please' and 'thank you' don't translate, so it can be quite jarring to an Irish person if someone doesn't say them. Our tip, try and remember to use these polite phrases, and you won't run into any issues.
4. Pubs And Bars
Running on the same theme of politeness, in Ireland, like other places in the world, we don't form a queue at the bar.
We just go to an open space and wait to be served. While there is no typical queue formation, you should be aware of who has been waiting longer than you in the queue, and if the bartender comes to you first, politely point them in the direction of your fellow punter and wait your turn.
While many countries and regions of Europe offer a really cheap living experience, be prepared that Ireland is not one of them.
If you have done your research, you'll know that Ireland is experiencing a cost of living crisis at the moment.
As such, prices around the country for things like groceries, rent, and a night out are higher than ever. This is one culture shock you're going to want to prepare for before making the move.
2. It's Bigger Than You Think
When people move to Ireland, they are often surprised by the size of it. While it's much smaller than many countries, it's not quite as small as you think! For example, you can't hop on a bus from Donegal to Cork and back for a quick day trip.
So, familiarise yourself with the region of the country you're moving to and suss out which neighboring counties are easy for your to visit and which require more advanced planning.
1. The People
Irish people are some of the friendliest in the world, and this can be quite a culture shock, depending on where you're moving from!
If a stranger talks to you on the bus, on the street, or in a pub, don't be alarmed; they are more than likely just a friendly local who is trying to strike up a conversation.