Packing for your holiday is one of the most important things to do but can also be a stressful time. You have to consider your bags weight restriction, and you certainly don’t want to over pack on unnecessary things. To make things easier and less stressful, we have created this packing list for Ireland.
One of the most important things to pack, to aid your crossing of the boarders into the Republic of Ireland, are the correct documents. You will require the following:
- Cash – ensure you have enough cash for your trip, and enough for emergencies. In Ireland the currency is Euros. If you have a credit card, check with the card provider, how much the interest will be if used. It may not be too expensive, as we found out.
- Driving license/International Drivers Permit – If you are driving or hiring a car in Ireland, you will require a driving license or an International Drivers Permit. European driving license holders will not require a driver permit, but you will need to pack your driving license. If you hold a non-EU driving license, you will be required to pack your home countries driving license, and the international drivers permit. You can obtain an International Drivers Permit in your home country, or in the country you are in prior to your trip.
- Travel insurance/car insurance – We would suggest purchasing travel insurance from your home country, this will cover you in most eventualities, but you must read the full terms and conditions to find out what is not covered under your policy. If you are taking your own car to Ireland, then you will need car insurance which covers the vehicle for travel within the EU. The minimum requirement is third party only. Once you have purchased the car insurance for your trip, make sure you read the full terms and conditions to familiarise yourself with what you are covered for and not covered.
- Visa – If you are a non-EU passport holder, then you may require a visa before entering Ireland. Before traveling to Ireland, check if you require a visa. If you do, follow the relevant application form for a visa to Ireland.
This is an obvious one to include in with your packing, but there could be some additional things that you may have forgotten you need:
- Sun tan lotion – This is a seasonal item to pack, if it is winter, then don’t pack the sun protection, as this will only take up space in your suitcase. If you are travelling during warmer months, then make sure you have enough space for this to be packed, especially if you are prone to sun burn, or light skinned. Even if it is a cloudy day in the summer it is still possible to burn.
- Medical supplies – if you need to take medication regularly for a condition, then you will need to pack a good supply for your trip. It is good practice to have at least four days’ worth of medication in your hand luggage in case your main luggage is lost or delayed.
- Tissues – you can pick-up pocket-size packs of tissues, which will prevent the spread of germs.
- Mosquito repellent – Whilst we didn’t encounter any mosquitos in Ireland, it is still good practice to pack this, to prevent being bitten. We swear by the Jungle Formula roll-on mosquito repellent, as it really prevents you from being bitten. It’s very easy to apply and dries very quickly, with no strong smell.
- First aid kit – In your little first aid kit, make sure you have plasters, painkillers (with any medication, it is always a good idea to keep the box or instruction, in case of needing to provide this to authorities), antibacterial hand sanitizer etc.
- Mobile phone
- Chargers – you will require the relevant chargers, to charge your phone, camera battery etc.
These will tend to be items that do not form as part of the above, such as:
- Books – if you have time for reading, then pack a good book to read on the plane, or by the beach, the book could be a physical book, or electronic book, the latter being more practical as you can store more books on an eReader which would take up less space.
- Padlock and keys – if you are checking in any bags, you will need to lock the bag with a padlock and key, this will prevent items or your belongings being stolen.
- Bum bag/money belt – this is a great item to have to store your cash, credit cards, and keys, as this is close to your body and can be hidden, it should deter your belongings being stolen
- Phrase book – you may need a phrase book to help speak with the locals if you are not familiar with English
- Guide book
- Note pad – you may want to take some notes whilst away.
- Pen/pencil – you will need something to write with if you intend to write notes as you go
- Water – you must remain hydrated at all times. Take a couple of spare water bottles with you, so you can refill them as you go. You can always purchase bottled water, should this be your preference! We would also recommend a camelback pouch (these come in different sizes), which you refill with water, and would be stored in your backpack to drink as you go.
- Snacks – taking some healthy snacks with you, will save money and keep you going between meals. Always keep some spare, in the event of an emergency.
As Ireland is seasonal, you will need to pack the appropriate clothes for the trip, and do not over pack. If it is winter, you will need to pack very warm clothing, and during summer, you will pack cooler clothing. Here are just some of the essential clothes to take with you along with the appropriate clothing for the weather conditions:
- Towel – take a small face towel with you, as some hotels in Ireland do not always provide this.
- Clothing – Make sure you only pack essential clothes for the time of year, and do not over pack, only take enough for the number of days you are there and a couple spare. For example, if you are travelling for 5 days take 5 days’ worth of clothes and then 2 spares.
- Shoes – only take a few pairs of shoes with you, we know us ladies can over pack on shoes, but it is important to remember that you don’t want to over pack on too many things. Make sure you have the appropriate shoes for the occasion, ie if you are hiking The Great Sugarloaf you will want to wear hiking shoes.
- Wet weather gear – whilst you are out and about, you will want to stay dry, so if it rains having good waterproof jacket and trousers will prevent your clothes on the inside getting wet. Wet weather gear is very light, and takes up very little room.
- Thermal underlayers – this is seasonal, therefore if it is winter, then taking some underlayers will keep you warm while you are out in the cold.
- Backpack – you will require a backpack or a bag to keep your main belongings, along with your first aid kit, camera’s, snacks, and water etc. Bring a good size reliable backpack with you to store these items. We would highly recommend Osprey, as the backpack we purchased has been reliable, but also a well-known brand.
Whilst this may seem like a lot of items to take with you, yet you want to be packing the right balance. You need enough for the trip, but you don’t want to over pack your bag with things you will not use, or need. If you are travelling from Europe to Ireland, you are more likely to be using a budget airline, which means there will be a small luggage allowance. Different airlines will have different terms and conditions, always check the T&C’s and pack accordingly. It will also be the case that not all items above will need to be packed for example sun cream, and mosquito repellent during the winter, or thermal clothing during the summer.
Now that you know what to pack for your holiday to Ireland, but what about where to visit, and what to do? We would recommend visiting Ashford Castle! Want to know why? Then you really should check out The ultimate guide to exploring Ashford Castle in Ireland