Famed for its rugged beauty, welcoming people, and lively pubs, Ireland is a wonderful place to live and work – if you can handle the weather!
Yes, “the Emerald Isle” has cool summers, mild winters, and year-round rain, but it also boasts a varied modern economy, high wages, and a bustling nightlife. This friendly English-speaking nation offers excellent employment opportunities, cosmopolitan cities, and stunning natural hotspots. If you’re thinking of moving abroad, it’s well worth your consideration.
How is the Irish economy performing?
The Irish economy took an enormous hit when the 2008 global financial crisis struck, but the recovery is well on its way. In fact, over the past 3 years, Ireland has had the fastest growing economy in Europe. Today, the unemployment rate stands at 6.4%, down from 9.9% in March 2015. GNP rose 9% in 2016 over 2015, and the average weekly wage reached €716 (or €34,368 a year). Indeed, wages are high across the board – the Irish minimum wage currently stands at €9.15 per hour for adult workers.
What about the cost of living?
As you might expect in a country with such salaries, the cost of living is also high. Housing and travel costs take up the main chunk of most people’s wages. In Dublin, for example, you can expect to pay €1,350 per month for a central one-bedroom apartment, €120 per month on travel, and €200 per month on basic utilities and internet. A meal for two in a restaurant will cost between €30 and €60, and a pint in a pub will set you back about €5.
What are the in-demand jobs in Ireland?
Ireland has a modern knowledge economy. The main sectors are IT, financial services, medical tech, pharmaceuticals, engineering, and the alcoholic beverage industry. Other in-demand jobs include doctors, nurses, dentists, pharmacists, and hotel staff.
The Irish Independent newspaper penned a handy guide on the Top 50 jobs that they feel Ireland will need in the medium to long term. It includes some surprises such as hairdressers, waste management specialists, and priests.
If you have a specific profession in mind, you may wish to check out this list of currently in-demand jobs. It’s based on media reports and information gathered from the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs.
Why not see for yourself what’s on offer by browsing these local jobsites:
What documentation do I need to live and work in Ireland?
EEA citizens can live and work in Ireland without any special documentation. However, non-EEA citizens must have a visa and an employment permit. Generally speaking, non-EEA citizens need to be moving to work for a company that will pay €30,000 a year or more. More information for both EEA and non-EEA citizens can be found here.
Life in Ireland
Ireland is famous for its ‘craic agus ceol’ (fun and music), and you can find both in pubs all around the country. Pubs are the focal point of Irish culture, and are the ideal place to go to make new friends, meet up with old ones, watch the big match, or listen to some live music. If you’re looking for somewhere quiet to spend the afternoon reading over a cup of tea or coffee (or a pint), pubs are a great option, too. Many serve quality food, especially on Sundays – just ask for a ‘Sunday roast’.
Speaking of food, most Irish towns and cities have restaurants from every corner of the globe. You’ll also find gyms, golf clubs, and other healthy options everywhere. And if you’d rather watch than play, why not check out one of the many soccer, rugby, or GAA games on every weekend around the country? If you fancy something racier, you can also head to the horseraces for a day.
What’s more, you’re never more than a stone’s throw away from a nature walk or a day out in the country. Beautiful rural towns and villages dot the countryside, and although the roads are infamously bumpy, the views, especially along the coast, are frequently stunning.
Sound like the kind of place for you? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!