Ireland is a land of incredibly rich cultural heritage, breath-taking natural beauty and world-renowned Celtic charm.
Its proximity to the UK, common language and flourishing economy all make it an increasingly popular emigration destination, so to shed some light on the immigration process and what you can expect on the Emerald Isle, we’ve written a small introduction to moving there! Enjoy.
One of the main reasons people decide to move overseas is to improve their quality of life, and Ireland could be a good destination if that’s one of your key considerations.
Ireland ranks highly on a number of grading indexes, notably the OECD Better Life Index, which lists Ireland higher than their official average on things like housing, work-life balance, education, personal security and life expectancy.
There is also a clear sense of community in Ireland, with some 95% of people believing that they know someone they could rely on in a time of need (higher than the OECD average of 88%). Additionally, the country ranks well in terms of civic participation, with a consistently high voter turnout.
In terms of things to do, Ireland is a wonderland of scenic landscapes, hiking trails, award-winning golf courses and some of the most coveted surf spots in the UK. There are also a huge amount of festivals held in Ireland every year, from Puck Fair and the St Patrick’s Day Parade to a variety of large music festivals.
If you’re looking for something quieter, Ireland’s rich history means there are an abundance of heritage sites to be explored, including the Knowth Neolithic grave passage to Blarney Castle, and on the culinary front, Ireland’s gastronomy scene is renowned, with produce that is arguably some of the best in the world.
Famous Irish writer Hugh Leonard once stated that ‘the problem with Ireland is that it’s a country full of genius, but with absolutely no talent’. Leonard himself, funnily enough, being just one of many extremely talented people to have come from Ireland – a place that now contains the European HQs of some of the biggest tech and pharma companies in the world like Google, Facebook and Apple.
Of course, not everyone can get work at these giants, and indeed, when it comes to work, Ireland can be a bit of a trade-off. While rural areas might not have the job availability of London, for example, the quality of life could be considered to be higher – and property costs can be far cheaper.
Finding work in Ireland is much the same as anywhere else. Though if you’re curious about their top work opportunities, The Irish Times maintains a list of their top 1000 companies, a useful guide which gives a summary of the variety of the more high-profile jobs you can expect to find.
Some 40,000 people from all around the globe uproot and start new lives in Ireland each year – a figure that continues to increase. Whether its graduates seeking to get their foot on the career ladder, families looking for a fresh start, or professionals looking to progress, Ireland is renowned for having a welcoming reputation and comparatively streamlined immigration process.
First things first, if you’re coming from the European Economic Area (EEA) you do not require a visa, or indeed a work permit to move to Ireland – just book your flight and go.
If, however, you’re coming from somewhere outside of the EEA you will require a visa and a work permit – the difference between the two being that a visa allows entry and the permit enables you to work during your stay. The process for obtaining each is separate.
Here is a handy list of countries that will require a visa in order to stay.
If yours isn’t on the list, congratulations – you don’t require a visa! If your country is, however, then you will need to consider your options.
If you’re planning on staying for less than 3 months, you can get a short-stay ‘C’ visa, if you’re looking to stay longer than 3 months, then you’ll need a long-stay ‘D’ visa.
You can find out more on the more technical aspects of applying for a visa here.
On the work permit front, there are options that range from a general employment permit to a critical skills employment permit, each with different variables, but don’t be put off, Ireland is decidedly easier to immigrate to than countries like Australia or Canada.
You can find out more about the available work permits here.
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