Ireland, and more precisely Dublin, is a major tourist destination that can accommodate for the tastes of every tourist. You can marvel at the amazing countryside, explore the historical keeps and fortresses, learn more about the fascinating history of Ireland, and much more in a short amount of time thanks to the relatively small size of the city and the excellent transport links. However, first time visitors might feel a bit overwhelmed when it comes to planning, as there is much to prepare when visiting a foreign country, such as Ireland. Read on for some tips and guidance to make your first visit to Dublin as enjoyable as possible.
Passports and Visas
First of all, to reach Dublin, you need to enter Ireland, which is only possible if you have a valid passport that has an expiration date of at least 6 months after the date of your return. In addition, if you are a citizen of any country apart from the US and UK, you will need to get a visa. If you are booking a flight online rather than at a travel agents, and you’re not sure on anything, call the airline immediately. Sites such as momondo or Skyscanner that search for the cheapest flights for you, might present the best deal, but your booking isn’t made with them so it’s always best to go direct to the airline to find out more.
The first thing you should know is that the euro is the official currency of the Republic of Ireland, and if you have US dollars, they will not be accepted. Prepare in advance, as Dublin is an expensive capital that has a lot in the way of merchandise and entertainment, so you might find yourself spending a lot.
If you are afraid of running out of money, do not be! There are many ATMs all around Dublin that accept international cards. Moreover, you can use the Airport ATM if you prefer to stock up on cash once you arrive.
What to bring
Actually, you do not really have to bring that much, just clothes that prepare you for the varied weather you would be experiencing. Each day in Dublin, you can definitely expect a mixture of weather conditions because it is very normal to see sun, rain and wind, all in the same day; therefore, pack clothes for each of those environmental conditions. However, remember the number one rule of travelling: always pack lightly as you will have to carry your bags. If you are afraid of going unprepared, you shouldn’t, because Ireland is a modern country and you can buy whatever you need on the big shopping streets.
Safety and Security
This is something every traveller dreads because it sure isn’t fun losing your documents in a foreign country. To prepare for the worst, make photocopies of your passport, airline tickets, and everything else, so that you can safely use them rather than the originals. Also, you should be wary in Dublin because, as it is a usual thing in all major capitals, there are many pickpockets. Do not put your wallet or ID in the pockets of your clothes because it is an easy target! Rather you should buy a money belt that fits under your clothes. Most importantly, you should never go on ATMs when it is dark, because however dire your need for money is, it can always wait until the next day.
Planning a trip can be overwhelming, and even if you have the resources, it is never a bad idea to minimize costs. One thing that can cut your travel costs drastically is to do as much preparation ahead of your trip as possible. Take a look at currency exchange sites such as xe.com to try and get a good idea of how much you’ll need in advance.
Photo credit, Euros: Images Money on Flickr