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Ireland Travel Answers

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · January 07, 2017
Sad News on Closure

I would like to say a big thank you to the management and staff @ VT for running a clean ship and being one of the better Irish forums over many years.
Anyone not wishing to ask on the more Klanish parent Forum of TA might want to look at Fodor's or Ireland Yes.
Anyone wanting to contact me can do so on Facebook @

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · December 06, 2016
Piercings in ireland  (5 Answers)

This is a totally random question, but I was just wondering how popular piercings are in Ireland? I'm American and have a total of 14 including my tongue, lip, and 2 in my nose..I was just kind of wondering if it's generally accepted or if I'll be getting weird or judging looks from people when I go to visit? I realize it's more than likely not a big deal, but if people who live in Ireland or have visited and know how a majority of the people feel about facial piercings there, I would really appreciate hearing about it. I've never left the country and I'm nervous about everything haha

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · November 22, 2016
Hiring a private driver  (4 Answers)

Has anyone ever hired a private driver in Ireland? This would be done in lieu of renting a car. Is it expensive? Recommended? I'm planning a drip that goes from Dublin south around the shore up to Galway and back to Dublin. This would probably be done in a week's time. Any help/advice would be appreciated.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · November 10, 2016
cork to shannon  (5 Answers)

Looking for help to get to Shannon airport from Cork airport. I can't find any easy way. I am actually coming from Amsterdam in early August 2017. Did not want to fly via of Heathrow due to layovers and high cost flight via Heathrow. Any help would be appreciated.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · November 08, 2016
Waterford Worth it?  (11 Answers)

I am travelling to Ireland next May and will be there for about 10 days. Due to time constraints my friend and I are going to be staying in the southern part of the country. I love Waterford Crystal and would like to go tour the factory and store. However, it seems that there isn't much else there to see so I'm not sure if we'd spend the night there. We will be travelling by train and it doesn't look like there is anywhere to store luggage for a few hours. With our limited time, is it worth it to go to Waterford? Are there other things we shouldn't miss there that I'm missing? Just for reference, we're planning to spend 3 nights in Dublin and then also hit Cork, Limerick, either Ennis or Shannon, visit the Cliffs of Moher, go to Galway and then make our way back to Dublin. What do you think? Should we go to Waterford? Thank you for any help you can give.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · October 27, 2016
Cheap accomodation & car rental  (5 Answers)

Could someone suggest a home stay type accommodation for 4 for a week and cheaper car rentals?
We intend to tour around some interesting places (nothing in mind yet) while attending son's graduation.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · October 05, 2016
Train from Dublin to Belfast  (9 Answers)

We are going to Ireland in November and will be taking Irish Rail train from Dublin to Belfast. Is it necessary or advantageous to book those tickets in advance? I am a little hesitant to do that and lock into a departure time because we will be taking a bus from Dublin Airport to the Dublin train station. While flight is sceduled to arrive at 7AM who knows when we would eventually get to the station. I am thinking it might just be easier to buy tickets at train station. Would the Dubin-Belfast train be that crowded in November? Any advice would be most welcome.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · September 21, 2016
Rent or lease car for 3 weeks in Ireland  (5 Answers)

We are going to Ireland for three weeks in November (I know not the best weather ! ) I have heard that leasing a car is often less expensive than renting. Also with a lease insurance is often included and the taxes are far less than renting. Anyone have experience with leasing or other rent/lease advice?

We arrive in Dublin and will spend most of our time in the North. This is our fourth trip to Ireland. Most of the other trips we didn't need a car. The last time we rented a car there was many years ago in the early 70's.

Any advice is much appreciated.
Jim and Barbara

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · September 12, 2016
Overnight in Dublin B&B before return flight  (12 Answers)

Have just returned after enjoyable vacation to Ireland, Paris plus tour of Scandinavian countries. My return flight was out of Dublin after arriving from Stockholm. I booked a B&B in Swords to be convenient to airport for early flight. Have booked hotels at airport on many trips but because of the high increase in rates decided to try B&B. On arrival had to carry my luggage upstairs. Room was pleasant and owner was welcoming showing me how to make the tea in room. Did not have a comfortable chair in the room to sit and relax just a small chiar at desk. I mentioned I had to leave early next morning to check in and get boarding pass and asked about breakfast to hear that the breakfast room would not be open before 8am. Asked if coffee would be ready and maybe a slice of toast. Response that I could make instant coffee in room or cup of  tea. I ordered a taxi to pick me up after 7:30 am and decided to eat light breakfast at airport. Would not want to waste my time having to make tea in room when busy packing and getting ready for departure. Wondering if this is the routine in most B&Bs ? Had a similar problem leaving hotel in Killarney few weeks earlier. They did not tell me that nobody would cover desk in lobby when I needed to leave to get on train at 7:40am. Said I could phone for a taxi and that the kitchen staff would not be open to make the coffee. This is place is listed as 4* boutique hotel. When I went down with my luggage the place was in darkness. I paid 130euros a night to stay there. I  would not return to any of the places again. Leaving Stockholm at end of tour, the tour guide informed me that I could have breakfast any time after 5:45am since I had to take a bus to Arlanda airport from hotel and when I went down at 6am the buffet breakfast was set up so I enjoyed a nice relaxing breakfast leaving. Most likely I will not use B&Bs again if they cannot deliver the service that they are supposed to provide to guests. I expected better in this day and age. Anyone else have this experience of not getting breakfast before 8am. Thanks.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · September 02, 2016
Dublin - how many days?  (9 Answers)

Experienced travelers have advised to not spend too much time in Dublin, as the rest of the country is where to spend our time. Do you agree?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 24, 2016
Waterford Crystal  (3 Answers)

Is it possible to get great deals on Irish made Crystal? I'm not picky about the brand. if so, in what town/store?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 22, 2016
Killalane Road Races September 2016  (2 Answers)


My husband and I will be on our 1st trip to Ireland in September and would love to go to the Killalane Road Races, but, we came across an article that they are cancelled.

Can anyone confirm that for me?

Thank you and much appreciated :)


Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 21, 2016
One week road trip!  (5 Answers)


My wife and I (mid 30's, adventurous) are heading to Ireland for a week in October, and have hired a car with the plan to road trip around the island.

I have envisaged the following itinerary, is it doable, and does anyone have any other suggestions?

Day 1: Arr Dublin, Dublin – Belfast
Day 2: Belfast
Day 3: Belfast – Giants Causeway – Derry – Swanlinbar (family)
Day 4: Swanlinbar – Galway
Day 5: Galway – Blarney/Cork
Day 6: Cork – Dublin
Day 7: Dublin
Day 8: Dep Dublin

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 08, 2016
Traveling with tour to Copenhagen, Norway, Sweden returning to Dublin/JFK  (4 Answers)

Arriving into Ireland end of next week August and need advice on best method to purchase foreign currencies for my tour. I contacted Irish Bank today which was a waste of time. They could not place my order which I would pay for with Debit in Euros and pick up on arrival. Said I would need to visit the branch and complete order forms. Then advised the bank only handles money to use in Sweden. This did not help either as Stockholm will be the last stopover before leaving on return flight to Dublin and on to JFK.

Will travel on A/F flight to Copenhagen to join tour. I need to have some money to use in Denmark on arrival in case I take a taxi or train getting to hotel. I am arriving on a Saturday and need advice please on best way to get the currencies.

I know there are foreign exchange kiosks at most airports but not sure if one can purchase currency using Euros debit card. Some meals are included and paid for on tour. I need to have some money on arrival in Copenhagen. Is it easy to get money at airports?
Will visit Killarney for 3 nights mid week on arrival, then Donegal Town for 2 and one night near Dublin before I begin the tour. Know that the banks in Ireland are closed on Saturday so greatlyl appreciate help with this matter please. Thank you.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 07, 2016
Last night accomodation  (2 Answers)

Hello all,

I was wondering if I could get some Dublin airport hotel accomodation recommendations for our last night's stay before flying home on September 22nd. Our flight leaves at 1:50pm. We will need a hotel that offers free shuttle service.

Thanks for your time! :)

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 06, 2016
Road trip  (6 Answers)

Wel, as usual, my question is in fact questions:
We are thinking to go next year to Ireland.
Do you think 14 days are enought for doing the tour by car of the island ?
What are the place we we can not miss, that we must see for sure ? (city, building, nature, landscape, ... )
Thanks !

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 03, 2016
Small Engine Flight / Aerial Tour  (3 Answers)

Looking for to have a flight around either Dublin area or Galway. an hour or two. Just a nice aerial tour. Any one know any small engine plane operators for hire?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 28, 2016
Killarney day tour Gap of Dunloe

Need some help please in planning a day sightseeing Gap of Dunloe area. Is it better to take this tour with guide or can it be done independently. I have been to Killarney a few times and am familiar with National Park and have some sightseeing tours.
I read that there is a shuttle bus from tourist office and bus station that drops off tourists who are hiking the trails. I enjoy trails but not sure if I should join a tour or do the hiking and afterwards pick up the shuttle to get back to town or National Park. I will be in Killarney on August 17-18. Thanks for any suggestions.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 25, 2016
Dublin airport: B&B overnight  (1 Answer)

Looking for a B&B close to airport for 1 night early September. Have stayed at most hotels in airport area but because of higher prices and some with no breakfast included, looking to stay in B&B that is not far from airport and would prefer one on the city bus route from city. Any recommendations, will be appreciated. Thank you.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 25, 2016
Ordering one way ticket online  (7 Answers)

I'm trying to buy a one way ticket on Iarnrod Eireann official site without success. Want travel on early train Killarney to Dublin Connolly station where I can connect with express bus service to Donegal. on August 19. I only need a one way ticket so I want to check the fare, standard class and first class since its early morning.

I have received my Open Roads bus pass already which will cover second leg of journey. If I can order it online I feel I might get a better price. Also the ticket office in Killarney might not be open when I arrive after 7am.

Had this experience before. Walked to the Killarney station one Saturday morning to buy a ticket to travel next day to Dublin and was told by a conductor that the ticket office is closed all weekend. Did not expect to hear this in summer peak season in a big tourist hub like Killarney.

Any help please getting my ticket in advance. Thank you. Kate

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 18, 2016
2 Nights B&B suggestions Dublin City 16-18 Aug 2016  (3 Answers)

Hi There.

I'm visiting Dublin City with my 77 year old Irish Mother for 2 day's on the above dates.

We wont have a car this trip, so a central location (within a 5 mile radius) is very important.

(Don't want to do any Airbnb, Hostels or Hotels).

We're just looking for a simple affordable B&B with 2 sinlgle rooms, (if thing's could be busy, then we'd settle for 1 room with 2 single beds type of thing).

Ideally we'd be looking for something circa €50-€70 each per night

Any suggestions or recommendations would be greatly apprciated.

TIA :-)

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 08, 2016
Itinerary help please  (7 Answers)

My husband and I have 24 nights to travel around Ireland and then spend 4 or 5 nights in Dublin-yeah!! We are mature folks-not into partying except to hear music at the pubs. We have rented a car in Dublin and plan to bring it back there.This will be the end of Aug and mostly September.

We love exploring and don't want to be rushed. We'd rather spend a few days in one spot and not be in a different place very night. We love to walk, wander, get lost, meet locals, listen to music, hear some stories.Paul's mother was Irish but we don't know much more than that.

We want to see Newgrange, Connemarra, Cliffs of Moher, Wicklow mountains

We are thinking of:
Meath area-2 night
Sligo-2 night
Westport-2 nights
Doolin or Ennis-1 or 2 nights
Galway-2 nights
Dingle-5 nights
Portmagee-3 nights-we booked a Skellig Michael landing tour!
Kinmare-3 nights
Cork-3 nights
Kilkenny-1 night
Bray-1 night

Can we combine any of these so not to overlap too much? Any advice is welcome.

Thank you

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · June 20, 2016
Killarney B&B August 16  (3 Answers)

Can someone please recommend a B&B non smoking with shower in Killarney. I like location of National Park as I do lots of walking and need to be close to buses, will not have a car. Need a quiet area as will arrive tired after long flight.
I booked hotel for following 3 nights but want to change and so far it seems hotel has no vacancy for Aug. 16. Thanks.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · June 19, 2016
Driving in Ireland  (8 Answers)

I'm thinking of renting a car in Ireland. Before doing that, I wish to know how realistic the driving time/duration is as shown by Google Maps. For example, Google Maps show that it takes 41 minutes to drive from Dublin to Brú na Bóinne, and 2 h 20 min from Dublin to Galway. Can this be realistic considering the actual road condition? Many thanks for your advice!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · June 15, 2016
Stay in Kilkenny night before 1.40pm flight?  (2 Answers)

We will be travelling from Cahersiveen on a Sunday end of July hoping to stay somewhere closer to Dublin. Is Kilkenny a good place to stay being about 1.5 hours from Dublin airport or should we look closer? We will need enough time to drop rental car off also.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · June 15, 2016

I will be in Dublin at the end of August 2016. I collect dolls from the countries I visit. Does anyone know the names of stores that sell these type of dolls? I am looking for porcelain dolls dressed in Irish costumes. I will be on a tour and will not have much free time. We will also be in Kilkenny, Sligo, Limerick, Cork and Belfast. Again, limited time. Any help you can give me, will be appreciated. Thanks!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · June 08, 2016
Tourist travel pass for Buseireann and Irish Rail  (7 Answers)

Have been looking for the multi-ride tourist passes on Buseireann and Iarnrod sites: Open Roads for bus, and Rambler pass for Irish Rail without any success. Not sure if they discontinued the Rambler pass but they do offer the Open Roads pass for bus travel on most busy routes. Wanted to travel Dublin to Killarney and return from Cork and then by bus journeys to other areas over about 8 days. It worked out cheaper than doing single and round trip journeys. Do any members know if these have been discontinued as I think the service has been cut back some. Public transportation worked quite well for me in recent years without the stress of driving and it was more reasonable. I am senior citizen and do all my journeys in day time hours.

Hope there is some help out there. Thank you to all.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · June 04, 2016
Want to go to Ireland in August  (1 Answer)


I'm hoping to go to Ireland sometime early August with my girlfriend, we're both students so we want to spend as little as possible, I was looking online and thought Cork maybe a nice place to visit, we want somewhere which will be peaceful and have some beautiful sites, both man made and natural, so I hope Cork will have both. Does anyone know of a cheap B&B in Cork? We'd maybe be staying for 3-4 nights but we haven't decided yet.

Thanks in advance!

edit: If anyone has any recommendations of anywhere in Ireland we could visit I would also greatly appreciate that! 

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · June 02, 2016
Need cell phone for short visit to Ireland  (3 Answers)

Will be staying in Ireland fort 8 days before moving onward to other cities in Europe. I own a Sony/Ericsson phone on which I had Vodafone service using SIM card. It served my purpose making contacts and short calls. I was in Ireland last year but asked to have it unlocked in a couple of places as could not find Vodafone but had no success. When I found Vodafone they advised me it would be a waste to activate it for about 24 hrs. so now I am wondering if I should buy a new phone that I can use but do not want a phone on a contract having to pay so much when I would not be using it. Should I try again having it activated and buy a new SIM, or would welcome other suggestions. Going over mid August.

Talked to a passenger on Aer Lingus last summer on return flight who rented a phone for a couple of weeks and recommended I try this route, but was in AT&T and Verizon in NYC and neither company had a rental deal.

Thanks for any help.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · May 28, 2016

Hello folks
Any experience, feedback about
Recommended trails?
Thanks in advance,

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