USA and the UK
- How to Immigrate to Ireland
- What to know before moving to Ireland
- Irish Immigration Documents
- Types of Irish Immigration Visas
- Irish Visa Requirements
- Other Requirements for Irish Visa
- Irish Visa Stamps
- Stamp 0
- Stamp 1
- Stamp 2
- Stamp 3
- Stamp 4
- Stamp 5 and 6
- Cost of living in Ireland
- Working in Ireland
- Frequently Asked Questions
How to Immigrate to Ireland
If you have decided to emigrate to Ireland, you’ll need to carefully organize all the details of the big move. On this page, we have collected a lot of helpful information to help anyone who wants to move to live and work in Dublin, Cork, Galway, or even the smaller towns of Ireland.
What to know before moving to Ireland
Before you move to Ireland, it is advisable to deepen your knowledge about the island, its inhabitants, and their way of life. Here is some helpful information to help get you started.
Time zone: UTC 0
Population: 5 million
Official languages: Irish Gaelic and English
Emergency number: 112 or 999
Driving side: On the left
Irish Immigration Documents
Ireland is part of the European Union. Thus, you don’t need visas or special documents to go to Ireland if you have an identity card or any other document from a European Union member country.
However, for non-European citizens, visas, stamps, and other documents are necessary to immigrate to Ireland. Nonetheless, many countries have agreements with the Irish government under which no visa is required to enter Ireland if the period of stay is less than 90 days.
Types of Irish Immigration Visas
There are two general types of visas for Ireland immigration: Category C or D.
Visas under Category C are short-stay visas and include:
- Training visas
- Employment (Atypical Working Scheme) visas
- Medical treatment visas
- Exam visas
- Marriage visas
- Internship visas
- Conference or event visas
- Tourist visas
- Business visas
Category D visas are intended for those who intend to stay in Ireland for an extended period. Among the visas available are:
- Study visa
- Employment visa
- Employment (Van der Elst) visa
- Employment (researcher) visa
- Minister of Religion visa
- Join a family member visa
- Volunteer visa
Other types of Irish visas include:
- Re-entry visas (For minors below 16 returning to Ireland without a Residence Permit)
- Transit visas (For passengers traveling through Irish airports to another country)
- The multi-entry visa (For those traveling to Ireland for a short visit, such as a seminar or business trip)
Irish Visa Requirements
People outside the EU who wish to live or work in Ireland require an Irish visa and employment permit. However, there are exceptions. If the spouse of a skilled worker has immigrated and is working or studying, then their spouse can automatically work the country without much hassle.
To be eligible to use Ireland visas, the applicant must have a valid passport from their country of citizenship and an original letter from their employer or potential employer if applicable. The letter must include a description of the applicant’s duties and the length of time they work in Ireland. If you’re planning to work in Ireland for less than three months, you may need a letter from your host in Ireland stating this information as well.
Also, to apply for a new Irish immigration visa, you must have proof that your previous stay was legal and ended with no criminal convictions against your name. This means that you must have a valid entry stamp into Ireland on your passport and no criminal record in your home country.
Other Requirements for an Irish Visa
To apply for an Irish visa, the visa applicant will need to submit the following documents:
- Online Summary Sheet: You must submit a summary sheet, sign, and date. A photocopy of this is not required.
- Photo: A recent photo that complies with the requirement details.
- Proof of residence: Proof of residence (in your current country) can be a stamp, sticker, or residence card.
- Financial evidence: You need proof of how you plan to finance your trip and support yourself. You need to provide your financial details in the form of bank statements released three months before your visit.
Irish Visa Stamps
One must obtain a stamp on their passport when they enter or stay in Ireland as non-EU/EEA/Swiss nationals.
Permission Stamps for Ireland visas are numbered. They indicate how long a citizen may stay in Ireland and what activities are permitted while in the country, whether working or studying. You receive your Irish Residence Permit (IRP) stamp after registering with immigration and applying for a stay that exceeds three months.
You will receive a Stamp 0 in the following cases:
- You wish to retire or live in Ireland as an independent person
- You are an elderly dependent relative of an EU/EEA national
- You are an academic visiting an Irish university or college
- You are working temporarily in Ireland for a multinational employer
Stamp 0 conditions
You or your sponsor must have extensive financial means to support your stay. In addition, you must also:
- Have INIS license you before you can start any new work
- Have private medical insurance (access government-funded health care will not be granted)
Stamp 1 is available to the following individuals:
- Individuals who intend to work in Ireland or run a business in Ireland on a work permit
- Individuals who have a Working Holiday Visa for Ireland
Stamp 1 Conditions
While in Ireland on a Stamp 1 visa, workers must abide by the following conditions:
- Employers will not be able to hire the worker unless they first obtain an Employment Permit for them
- Workers who are without a work permit cannot work unless they obtain a letter from INIS
- All workers must have private medical insurance
Graduate accountants who are permitted to work or study full-time in Ireland will receive the Irish Stamp 1A.
Stamp 1G is issued to the following individuals:
- Graduate Students who currently hold a Stamp 2
- Spouse/de facto partner of a Critical Skills Employment Permit holder
- Spouse/de facto partner of Researchers in the State on Hosting Agreements
Individuals who were on an Irish Student Visa (Stamp 2/2A), have finished their studies in Ireland, and have been approved for Third Level Graduate Programme work in Ireland may receive a Stamp 1G. This Stamp will allow you to stay in Ireland for up to 12 months where you can look for work. After Stamp 1G expires, you will be able to apply for an Employment Permit if you would like to stay in Ireland and keep working.
Spouses, de facto, or civil partners who are granted a Stamp 1G can work in Ireland without the requirement of a work permit. While in Ireland, they may pursue studies however they are not permitted to start or run a business while in the country.
Furthermore, spouses, de factor/civil partners may renew their Stamp 1G every year. After 5 years of living in Ireland under a Stamp 4, spouses or partners may apply for Stamp 4.
Stamp 2 is for international students in Ireland on an Irish Student Visa. You will receive this stamp if you register for a full-time course listed on the Interim List of Eligible Programmes (ILEP).
While in Ireland under a Stamp 2, you may:
- Work up to 20 hours each week during the school year
- Work up to 40 hours a week during the summer and winter holidays
You will not be eligible for publicly funded services under Stamp 2 and must obtain private medical insurance.
Stamp 2A is for international students enrolled full-time in a program, not ILEP. You are more likely to get Stamp 2A if you are a student who only spends one semester studying in Ireland but whose main education is in another country.
While in Ireland under a Stamp 2A, you will not be permitted to work and must have private medical insurance.
Stamp 3 is available to the following individuals:
- Individuals who wish to volunteer for a charity or non-profit organization in Ireland
- Individuals who come to Ireland as a “minister of religion”
- Individuals who are coming to Ireland to join their non-EEA/EU/Swiss spouse/civil partner or family member who is working in Ireland with an Employment Permit.
Those who are given a Stamp 3 are not permitted to work or establish a business in Ireland without a valid work permit. Furthermore, all individuals who are in Ireland under a Stamp 3 must have private health insurance.
Stamp 4 is available to the following individuals:
- Individuals who have held a Critical Skills Employment Permit for at least 2 years
- Individuals who have held a valid Employment Permit for at least 5 years
- Individuals who work as a researcher with a valid Hosting Agreement for 2 years
- Individuals who have been granted permission to join and reside with their Irish spouse, civil partner or de-facto partner in Ireland
- Individuals who have been granted permission as a convention or programme refugee
- Individuals who have been granted permission based on a subsidiary protection
- Individuals who would like to join a family member who is a recognized refugee (or has been granted subsidiary protection)
- Individuals who would like to remain with their child who is an Irish citizen
- Individuals with a Permanent Residency Permit
- Individuals who have an Investor Visa (and their eligible family members)
Those who have been granted a Stamp 4 visa will be able to work and start their own business in Ireland without needing an Employment Permit.
Stamp 5 and 6
You can apply for the Ireland Stamp 5 with the “Without Condition as to Time” endorsement after you have lived in Ireland for eight years. Unlike other passport stamps, this one does not expire and will last as long as your passport.
Any Irish immigrant can get Stamp 6 after they obtain Irish citizenship. The stamp represents dual citizenship.
Cost of living in Ireland
Cost of rent in Dublin
Rents in Ireland vary a lot between Dublin and other locations. Searching for a house or apartment in Ireland can be daunting, especially if you compare rents in Ireland with average Italian prices. A small apartment to rent in Ireland can cost up to 800/900€, while rents to live in Dublin are higher.
Dublin: renting a studio apartment costs around 1400€, while for two or more rooms, the price is around 2200€.
Cork: A studio to rent costs 1000€, while the rates for two or more rooms are on average 1500€.
Cost of living in Ireland
Ireland’s cost of living is higher than in most countries. Prices in Dublin are also much higher than in any other city or area in Ireland. Despite this, most of those considering moving to Ireland to work choose to live in the capital because of the greater possibilities.
Working in Ireland
After a negative period following the global crisis, the Irish economy is experiencing significant growth. Numerous multinationals have established their European offices in Dublin thanks to the favorable taxation guaranteed by the government.
Job opportunities abound in new technologies, the logistics sector, and medicine. Furthermore, tourism and catering always offer many opportunities to work, especially in very popular and visited cities such as Dublin.
Hospitals and healthcare in Ireland
The government guarantees health care in Ireland for all residents, who are entitled to free services according to their income bracket. The first bracket includes the lowest incomes and allows you to enjoy any health care service in Ireland free of charge. On the other hand, the second income bracket can receive only the main treatments and hospitalization free of charge.
For more detailed information regarding how to immigrate to Ireland in the case of non-European citizens, it is advisable to contact the Irish embassy or consulate in your country of residence.
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Before you start preparing for your journey to Ireland, you need to determine whether you need to have a visa to enter the country.
If you are a citizen of an EU/EEA member state, or a citizen of Switzerland, you do not need a visa to enter Ireland. You just need to show your passport or national id and you can stay in Ireland without any restrictions for up to 90 days. After that, you might be able to stay longer if you find employment or begin a study course.
Those who are nationals of non-EEA countries, however, need to apply for a visa before coming to Ireland. If you arrive in Ireland without a visa, you will not be allowed in.
Generally, if you are coming to Ireland on a Short Stay ‘C’ Visa, you are not allowed to work. There might be some exceptions if you hold the Business Visa or the Atypical Working Scheme Visa, but still, you will not be able to engage in full-time employment that requires an employment permit.