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Ireland
Official Name:

Ireland

Last Updated: December 20, 2016

Embassy Messages

Dublin

 

Further Safety and Security Information

Travel Warnings: Issued when Protracted situations make a country dangerous or unstable. Defer or reconsider travel.

Travel Alerts: Issued when short-term conditions pose imminent threats. Defer or reconsider travel.

Embassy Messages: Issued when local security issues arise.

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Dublin
42 Elgin Rd
Ballsbridge
Dublin 4
Ireland
Telephone: +(353) (1) 668-8777
Emergency after-hours telephone: +(353) (1) 630-6200
Fax: +(353) (1) 668-8056
Email: ACSDublin@state.gov

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Quick Facts
PASSPORT VALIDITY:

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Valid for the duration of your stay in Ireland

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

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One page 

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

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No

VACCINATIONS:

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None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

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10,000 euros or equivalent

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

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10,000 euros or equivalent

 

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U.S. Embassy Dublin
42 Elgin Rd
Ballsbridge
Dublin 4
Ireland
Telephone: +(353) (1) 668-8777
Emergency after-hours telephone: +(353) (1) 630-6200
Fax: +(353) (1) 668-8056
Email: ACSDublin@state.gov

See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Ireland for information on U.S.–Ireland  relations. 

Visit the Embassy of Ireland’s website for the most current visa information.

  • You must have a valid passport to enter Ireland, but U.S. citizens can enter visa free for tourism or business stays of up to three months.
  • There is no minimum passport validity for U.S. citizens entering Ireland.  We recommend you have a passport that is valid for the duration of your stay, evidence of sufficient funds to support your stay in Ireland, and a return airline ticket.
  • An increased number of U.S. citizens have been refused entry or have been granted only a limited stay because they failed to satisfy Irish immigration laws. Please ensure you have the appropriate visa prior to traveling. You can find more information at the Irish Naturalization and Immigration Service website, and on the U.S. Embassy Ireland website here.
  • We cannot intervene on your behalf when applying for a visa, nor can we assist if you are denied entry into Ireland.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Ireland.

Find information on dual nationalityprevention of international child abduction and customs regulations on our websites.

Crime:  Most U.S. citizens visit Ireland without incident. Though Ireland has a relatively low rate of violent crime, you should always practice sound personal security practices and maintain an awareness of your surroundings when traveling.

  • Rates of theft and petty crime have risen in recent years, and thieves often target rental cars and tourists.  These crimes rarely involve physical assault or violence, and commonly occur in Dublin’s city center and popular tourist areas.
  • Rental cars are crime targets and easily identifiable by the rental company stickers on the rear window of the vehicle.  If possible, remove these stickers and always lock your car when leaving it unattended.  When visiting city center areas, park your car in a secure car park and take the parking ticket with you.
  • Keep car doors locked while driving.  Don’t leave luggage or valuables visible inside a parked car, and don’t leave luggage attached to a roof rack.  When picking up and dropping off your rental car, do not leave the keys in the ignition while loading or unloading luggage to avoid theft.
  • ATMs crime is a concern.  Protect your PIN and look for evidence of tampering before using ATMs.  Criminals have used “skimmers” on ATMs, especially in tourist areas. Thieves use distraction techniques to steal your money. If you are distracted in any way while using an ATM, cancel the transaction immediately.

See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information on scams.

Victims of Crime:

  • Report crimes to the local police at 999 and/or 112 and contact the U.S. Embassy at +(353) (1) 630-6200.
  • Local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crimes.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent
  • Explain the local criminal justice process in general terms
  • Provide a list of local attorneys
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the U.S.
  • Provide information on victims compensation programs in Ireland
    • The Irish Tourist Assistance Service (ITAS) is a free, nationwide service offering support and assistance to tourists who are victimized while visiting Ireland.  If you are a tourist victim of crime, report the incident to the nearest Garda station (police station), which will contact ITAS
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport

Domestic Violence:  U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the Embassy for assistance.

For further information:

Hospitals in Ireland may not accept American insurance coverage.  Patients are expected to pay all costs up-front at the time of treatment and apply for reimbursement from their own travel insurance later.

  • Modern medical facilities and highly-skilled practitioners are available in Ireland.
  • Long waits for access to medical specialists and admissions to hospitals for certain non-life-threatening medical conditions is common.  Emergency rooms may be very busy, and post-treatment admissions may include long waits (sometimes overnight) on a gurney in a hallway.
  • Carry your prescription medication in original packaging with your doctor’s prescription.  Also carry a list of your medical history and all medications you are taking (including dosage and brandname).  Such lists will save Irish medical staff a lot of time.
  • Most over-the-counter (OTC) medications are available, but many U.S. brands are not.  Some U.S. OTC medications may require a prescription in Ireland.
  • Irish pharmacists may not be able to dispense medication prescribed by U.S. physicians and may direct you to obtain a prescription from an Irish doctor.
  • A list of Irish general practitioners in each area of Ireland may be obtained from the website of the Irish College of General Practitioners.
  • We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare is not valid overseas. 

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas.  Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments.   See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage

Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

Criminal Penalties:  You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Your U.S. passport will not prevent you from being arrested, detained, and/or prosecuted.

Furthermore, some crimes are also prosecutable in the U.S., regardless of local law.  For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification:  If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately.  See our webpage for further information.

Special Circumstances:  Most Irish banks will not accept U.S. $100 bills.  Many Irish financial institutions have recently stopped accepting or cashing traveler’s checks.  Credit cards are widely accepted throughout Ireland.  ATMs are widely available, but some, particularly in rural areas, may not accept debit cards from U.S. banks.

Faith-Based Travelers:  See the Department of State’s International Religious Freedom Report.

LGBTI Travelers:  There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Ireland. 

See our LGBTI travel information page and section 6 of our  Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance. While in Ireland, individuals with disabilities may find accessibility and accommodation very different from that in the United States.  Accessibility to hotels, bed and breakfasts, shops, and restaurants varies widely.  Travelers should inquire about accessibility issues with the business before making reservations.

  • Irish law requires access to government buildings for persons with disabilities and that public service providers ensure their services are accessible to those with mobility, sensory, and/or cognitive impairments.
  • Parking:  Local authorities and commercial premises have no legal obligation to provide external disabled parking facilities for their customers; however, on-street parking, public building parking lots, and internal parking lots always have disabled spaces available, for which a permit is required.
  • Buses and Trains:  The majority of buses and trains main urban areas of Ireland are now equipped for those with limited mobility, sight, or hearing disabilities, although some train stations and pathways may not be as easily accessible.
  • Main line and suburban trains require special portable ramps to permit boarding from the platforms to the carriages.  These are available at all terminal points, and major junctions and stations that have staff on duty.  Travelers are advised to contact Irish Rail, Dublin Bus, and Bus Eireann for their travel assistance information.
  • Residents of Ireland who meet the medical disability requirements may apply for free travel passes.  There is also a blind/invalidity pension from the Irish Department of Social Protections for those who qualify.

Students:  See our students abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers:  See our travel tips for women travelers.

Road Conditions and Safety: While in Ireland, you may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States.

  • Cars drive on the left side of the road in Ireland.  If you do not have experience driving on the left, be especially cautious.  Tourists driving on the incorrect side of the road are the cause of several serious accidents each year.
  • Road conditions are generally good, but once you exit the main highways, country roads are likely to be narrow, uneven, and winding.  Roads are more dangerous during the summer and on holiday weekends.  Be aware of cyclists and pedestrians in urban areas.
  • Most intersections use circular “roundabouts” instead of signals. Pay close attention to signs, and yield the right of way to those already in the roundabout.
  • Most rental cars in Ireland have manual transmissions.  It can be difficult to find automatic transmission rental cars.

Traffic Laws:  Police periodically set up road blocks to check for drunk drivers.  Penalties for driving under the influence can be severe.

  • Turning on red lights is illegal.  You must wait for either a full green or a directional green light (which could be straight, left, or right) before proceeding with caution.
  • You may use your existing U.S. driver’s license in Ireland for a temporary stay up to a maximum of one year.  Some insurance and car rental companies may request an International Driving Permit as well.  Contact the American Automobile Association for an International Driving Permit.  You are required to apply for an Irish driving license if you become a resident of Ireland.

Public Transportation: Taxi rates vary with time of day and location.  Ask your hotel for the number of a call-dispatched taxi service if you plan to be out during less busy times

  • Intercity bus and train services are generally good.
  • Local bus service in the cities is generally adequate, although many buses are crowded and they frequently run late.  Pay close attention to where bus stops are in both directions, as the drop-off and pick-up locations could be several blocks away from each other.

See our road safety page for more information.  Visit the website of the Irish Tourism Board and the website for the National Roads Authority of Ireland, which is responsible for road safety.

Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to Ireland should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts at www.marad.dot.gov/msci. Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website (https://homeport.uscg.mil), and the NGA broadcast warnings website https://msi.nga.mil/NGAPortal/MSI.portal (select “broadcast warnings”).

Aviation Safety Oversight: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the Government of Ireland’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Ireland’s air carrier operations.  Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

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