Q&A: How Much Does a Trip to Ireland Cost?

How Much Does a Trip to Ireland Cost?

— Tony via e-mail

This is one of the first questions people ask when they start planning a trip. Each visit is unique, so there’s no universal answer, but let me get the conversation started.

Remember, several factors come into play that affect the cost, such as how long you stay, what type of accommodations you prefer, what kind of dining you choose, what type of transportation you use, how many people you are traveling with, how much time you spend in cities, what you buy for souvenirs, and the list goes on and on.

I’m going to toss out an estimate for what I would call a middle-of-the-road budget (definitely not luxury, but well above travel-on-the-cheap). Remember, these numbers aren’t “firm,” but they should give you an idea of what to expect.

Here’s the criteria: one person traveling from North America for one week in the summer and staying at standard B&Bs/hotels and traveling Ireland by rental car with manual transmission (stick-shift).

 

One week estimates (single)$US
  Airfare€750$1,014
  Car Rental + Excess Insurance€550$745
  Petrol/Gas€200$270
  Accommodation€250$338
  Meals€200$270
  Sites & Attractions€200$270
  Extras€250$338
ESTIMATED TOTAL €2,400$3,245

 

This trip could be done for less, and it could very easily be done for much, much more. Car rental is the expense that can vary the most… you may find quotes for only €120 ($162) per week, but that rate probably doesn’t include taxes, fees, and excess insurance (Super CDW), or you may find rates significantly higher depending on your exact dates.

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Here are two other resources you might find handy in planning your budget:

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Author: Corey

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24 Comments

  1. The other day I was talking with my credit card company about car rental insurance and they told me that Ireland was not longer restricted from that coverage. That is something to look into – most major credit card companies offer coverage while renting. Mine cover that cost of the vehicle “new” with no deductible.

    Also, the last 3 times I traveled to Ireland from Missouri, the airfare was less than 750 US$ so this is encouraging. In fact, in my research each time I take a trip it is the cheapest place in Europe to go.

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    • Abby, thanks for the comment. I hope more credit card companies start offering insurance on car rentals in Ireland. If you plan to use their insurance, make sure they send you a letter of coverage that specifically mentions Ireland. You must present it at the car rental desk.

      The letter is also helpful for you… When I called my credit card company a few years ago they said the exact same thing, but when the letter arrived it specifically said I was NOT covered in Ireland. The person on the phone simply didn’t realize there were exceptions.

      It’s always great to find airfare for under $800… with more flights being added this year, maybe we’ll see prices drop a bit.

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      • My Citibank World Elite MasterCard now covers Collision Damage worldwide. I can find no exclusions for Ireland in the fine print. Also includes trip cancellation coverage. Woo hoo!

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        • That’s great news… and I’m guessing that because it’s a world card, the foreign transaction fees are low or waived. Just be sure to get that letter of coverage.

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    • I noticed you flew out of MO. I would be flying out of KC. What is the best airline to use. We plan on using hotel points and staying in Dublin, but want to see a lot of places..is car rental the best or should we go with hiring a car or using a bus. It’s just me and my mom.

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  2. also, find someone or another couple to go with you and all the cheaper. You can split rooms and car rental and petrol.

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  3. My husband and I have travelled to Ireland five times, at various times of the year for varying lengths of time, traveling in various ways. I always make a budget and keep a very detailed diary of expenses for our trip. I plan our next trip(s) based on the diary. I can give anyone looking for info some good numbers. –Karen

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    • We are looking to go to Ireland and appreciate your knowledge of what are some of the best places to see and what the costs would be. How long were your stays? We will only have a week to 10 days available for our trip.

      thank you for your intel

      Brenda Zeamer

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    • Hi, my big thing I am confused about is the rental car and about how much it would cost, could you share some of your in site with me. Me and my sister are going in a year or two for about a week to Dublin.
      Thank you 😉

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  4. Corey
    Good info, but as I’m sure you might agree $3245 for a weeks holiday might sound very off-putting to a lot of people. That works out to something like $460/day. I recommend people stay longer. I know the total will be more expensive, but if you consider you’re paying for the flights anyway, and you wouldn’t need a car the whole time, the cost/day decreases a lot. For example if you double everything on your list, except the flights, car, and gas, then the cost/day for 14 days would be about $320. Of course you pay out more, but you get a longer holiday, and can relax and see more.
    Either way, it’s worth it :)

    Hope Ireland’s treating you well, and you’re staying out of the floods
    Liam

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    • Liam – I agree with you 100%. With longer stays, I also find I start spending a bit less each day on meals and extras. As Abby mentioned, your per person/per day costs also go down when you travel with a few other people.

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  5. On longer trips sometimes renting a self-catering cottage or apartment can cut down on costs. Being able to cook some meals yourself can be budget efficient considering the high cost of eating out in Ireland. If you share the rental with another couple or have your kids along on the trip it becomes even more of a cost cutter.

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  6. Thanks for this post I now have an idea on how much will my trip be worth next month. Is there anything that I should be aware of in terms of security?

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  7. One great way to cut costs is to spend 1 week biking! For about €20 a day you could rent a bicycle. Pick from 100s of short bike loops. You get some fresh air, exercise and you are right in the Irish countryside that you have come to see

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  8. $20.00 a day for a Bike? Yike(s)!!!!! Over the course of the past 17 years including at least a dozen trips to Ireland I’ll bet I have paid an average of $18.00/day for cars ranging in size from a Nissan Micra to a Ford Focus. Of course I always pay with a World Master Card and let them cover my insurance but be sure to do as Cory says. I always check several car rental companies and get the best rate available. I’m also renting for at least two weeks, drive a manual(stick)shift and believe it or not we actually got a deal that worked out to about $12.00/day.
    But you have to start early searching for the best deal.
    PS Biking is just fine if that’s your preferred mode of transportation.

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  9. I often see groupon deals for 6 nights, 8 days with airfare ( from Chicago, NY or San Fran), car and B & B vouchers for around $1299 per person. Seems like a good deal. Does anybody have any experience with groupons and know if this is a good deal?

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  10. My wife and I along with her parents are spending 17 days in Ireland in about a week. The entire package including car and all of our B&Bs is a hair over $4k Euro. Airfare was about $800/pp. That is about $2,050 per person for 2.5 weeks in country. We’ll have dinners and souvenirs and such, of course, but I can’t even take a 2 week trip to Hawaii for that kind of money and Ireland is far more interesting!

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    • Larry,

      I’m wondering what time of year you went to get airfare $800 per person (and where did you fly out of)? I have been looking into it and flying out of NY in August is running me about $1300 per person.

      Thanks!

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      • Sandy,

        July and August are the most expensive months to travel to Ireland from the US. By this point, it is unlikely you’ll find any flights under $1,000 (likely higher)… it ‘a a hard time to find a bargain on airfare.

        Meanwhile, flights for winter and spring 2015 from JFK > DUB are under $700 at the moment. So deals do exist, unfortunately not when you’re traveling :(

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  11. What would be the best places to visit in Ireland?

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  12. My granddaughter and I went to Ireland for the first time and spent 2 weeks there. We did a tour and time on our own before and after the tour. We used “Airbnb”, stayed 3 days in the heart of Dublin right on the Liffey River for $103/night. I wish the tour had been a little less fast-paced, but it’s a great way to see a lot of places I might not have seen otherwise. Taking out $200 from the ATM yielded about 140 Euros. The amount changes everyday. There are cheap places to eat just like in the US, such as Macdonalds, to save some money. My FAVORITE places was Carrigafoyle Castle on Carrig Island. We stayed at the Castle View Hotel and awoke every morning with a magnificent view of the Castle. The family who runs this Airbnb are the kindest people I’ve ever met and the food they prepare every night is to die for. Altogether the trip cost under $8000. The airfare was about $1000 a piece. I don’t have frequent flyer miles sadly. We saved some money on the airfare by juggling around the dates we arrived and departed. The tour was another $2250 for 2 people, car rental was $694 for 4 days. I personally was not impressed with driving in Galway City or any big city for that matter. Driving in the countryside was pretty easy. It’s hard to rethink old driving habits when you’re 62. But maybe that’s just me. I hope this will help you a little bit.

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