I have seen a few books available online that claim to help make your move to Ireland easier, but as of yet, I haven't read any of them. However, while planning her move to Ireland, Kate (one of our fellow site-members) has read a couple, and has graciously shared her views on the books for you here. Over to you, Kate...


As an American interested in immigrating to Ireland, my first step was to find “the” book that could answer all my questions. Did I find it? No. However, I did come across two very helpful books that provided some insight into what to expect. What I quickly found after reading through them was that the only way to fully understand my new soon-to-be home was to simply be there and learn as I go.

That being said, if you are like me, and prefer to have a book to sift through then I think you will find these helpful. Both books can be purchased on Amazon (as of writing this post, they are still available) – 1) Living & Working in Ireland by Joe Laredo – 3rd edition, and 2) Living Abroad in Ireland by Christina McDonald. While both books offer the same information, I found that Laredo’s book was written like a text book or tour guide whereas McDonald’s is from her own experience.

Both books are broken into chapters that range from an introduction to the provinces and counties of Ireland, the government, culture, education system, insurance, employment, healthcare, housing, transportation, and to the everyday of grocery shopping and simply how to pay bills. For example, there is an explanation of the grocery bag tariff. Why is this helpful? It is something I never would have thought to research or even ask about a few years ago when I found myself at the local store without any bags and the shop owner questioning how I was going to get my groceries to my car. However, now I know to pack my canvas bags with me whenever I visit and when I move next year. What I also found useful in both books is that they include a breakdown of the major cities – covering the climate, access to public transportation, culture, and even the cost of living. If you have the option of living anywhere in Ireland, this may be of interest to help narrow down your search.

I will say that both books are a good point of reference, and allow you to have the conversation with others (preferably living in Ireland) that can offer a broader perspective. Whether you prefer to just figure it out once you are in Ireland or do some research beforehand, these books can prove to be valuable. If anything they will at least get you thinking about the ‘little things’ like the name of the bus line or where to pay a bill.

Submitted by @katemreagan
book/pencil image credit Flickr/horiavarlan

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