Understand, Ireland is one of the best performing economies in the western world currently, with thousands of new jobs being created in well-paying industries every month.
Details from Orion suggest, there are numerous jobs in the life sciences area- something many a lot of people will find a big benefit. If you’ve decided to make the move to Ireland for career-related purposes then this guide is a must.
Ireland is NOT in the UK!
Everyone needs to remember that Ireland fought a long hard battle for independence from Great Britain. (It’s noted that Northern Ireland is a part of the United Kingdom, but when people refer to Ireland, they typically mean the Republic of Ireland.)
When an individual says that Ireland is part of the UK, it is arguably the most offensive statement a person could say to a native of Ireland. Furthermore, such an offensive statement would probably result in an extensive and expletive-filled response.
Religion and Politics
It’s well known that politics and religion, in general, should never be discussed around people, and no place where that is more relevant is in Ireland. After all, the battle for Ireland’s independence early in the 20th Century still results in a bit of separation in the country.
The same can be said for religion. Yes, Catholicism is an integral part of Irish life for many of its Irish. However, you may find that wherever you happen to be in Ireland, where the town or city likely closes down entirely on a Sunday, the Irish remain fiercely protestant. Therefore, if you are a person of faith, finding a church to worship in is not a problem. It is advised, however, to keep it to yourself, upon initially meeting someone, if you are agnostic or atheist.
It is advised to not get into conversations on religion or politics when in Ireland. Of course, if you know exactly who you are talking to, it’s okay. That said, pleading the fifth may be the wiser move.
Those who live in Ireland spend a lot of time in the local pubs. After all, that’s where most of Ireland’s socializing takes place. That said, learning the local etiquette is essential.
In Ireland, we have what is known as the “rounds” system. It means that if a person buys you a drink, you are then expected to buy the person a drink. You don’t want to have a reputation as a “round-dodger.” It is a moniker that would be hard to erase.
Another essential thing to know about Ireland is that the Irish love profanity. Insulting one another with swear words (or as the Irish call it, “craic”) is all done in fun. So don’t act like they do in the States. If you get called a swear word, don’t take it personally. It’s all done in affection in Ireland. So learn how to jump into the fun.
Celebrations are a Big Deal
In Ireland, celebrations are a big deal. These include everything from birthdays to weddings to christenings and more. In fact, even a wake is an opportunity to celebrate a person’s life, not mourn over it. The natives in Ireland love to have an excuse to get together and party together.
What happens when you get a wedding invitation? Well, you’re expected to not only attend but to also give a substantial cash gift of at least €200. In Ireland, generosity is important. In Ireland, you pay your way in the pub, you give substantial wedding gifts, and more. You don’t want to act like a stingy American when in Ireland.
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You’re used to straight roads in the United States. But in Ireland, forget it. In Ireland, the roads tend to not only be windy, but thin and long. Also, they aren’t always in the best condition. Always drive carefully when driving on the country roads of Ireland. For example, wildlife may wander onto a road risking an accident. You don’t need to operate at the maximum speed limit at all times. The natives of Ireland tend to drive easy.
Another thing to remember is that drinking and driving are taken very seriously in Ireland. There are low allowances for going over the legal limit. For example, as little as one pint of beer can take you over the legal limit. You will find that frequent roadside stops from the Irish police force, aka Gardaí, who will stop you on the spot and give you a breathalyzer, occur. So don’t take chances. If you’ve been drinking, get into a taxi, or use public transportation.
The Metric System
In Ireland, as in most of Europe, the Metric system is used. However, there’s no reason to worry too much about it. Imperial measurements are available in many of the cases. As far as road distances, however, kilometers are used. For example, 1km is equivalent to 0.6 miles.
In Ireland, you’re going to have to get used to the fact that customer service is a little less attentive. Servers in Ireland are typically paid a higher living wage and, therefore, are less reliant on tips to pay their bills. Consequently, they are less likely to fawn all over you as you eat in a restaurant or café. That said, not tipping your waitstaff is still a big social no-no. So don’t do that in Ireland.
With all that being said, this is not to say that the customer service in Ireland is poor. After all, Ireland prides itself on being hospitable to all. Therefore, staff looks forward to being polite and being of service to you. Just remember that the way it works in Ireland is just a bit different than how they do it in the United States. Politeness and respect are expected always.
Forget the Stereotypes
Okay, let’s go over the common ones. First, leprechauns don’t exist. Second, nobody actual says “top o’ the morning to ya” when they pass you on the street. Third, when it comes to eye color, you’re going to meet more green-eyed brunettes than redheads with blue eyes. Fourth, not every meal in Ireland starts and ends with potatoes. Finally, you’ll find that Ireland is a multi-cultural, vibrant, modern city. You’re not going to step off the plane and be greeted with an “in the middle of nowhere” environment with nothing but sheep and farmers.
Thanks for Reading!