Live, Work & Travel in Ireland

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Though lacking in well known tourist sights, it is perhaps the Irish people themselves that draw visitors to Ireland to sup a pint and enjoy the craic. Though a boom in the Irish economy briefly reversed traditional immigration flows from outgoing to incoming things are back to normal with the Irish seeking to emulate their parents and many times grandparents in looking for work in someone else's country.



Working in Tourism

Citizens of Argentina, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea and Taiwan, aged 18 to 30, benefit from reciprocal working holiday arrangements and can join EU/EEA nationals in being allowed to work in the Republic of Ireland. Americans can work in Ireland too, though the circumstances are slightly different in that there are no age limits provided applicants are in or have graduated from post secondary education in the last 12 months.

With restrictions placed on how long those on working holiday visas can work - no more than three months with one employer - most of these jobs will be in taken in seasonal industries, especially tourism. Jobs can be found in advance through sites such as but footpadding around an area with a concentration of hotels, bars and restaurants can be the better bet for finding work. TripAdvisor is a good tool for researching Irish hotels or other businesses in advance.

Ireland's climate isn't conducive for a long beach holiday season but the landscape is well suited to activity holidays. Rachel, a half-Aussie/half-Kiwi who worked in Ireland on a working holiday visa, recommends looking for work from mid March onwards and links to a number of outdoor centres in her blog post How to get a Working Holiday Job in Ireland!. More are listed here and we would also add County Mayo’s Horizon Education Centres.

More things to do in Ireland - from historic sites to golf - and the business that revolve around them can be found through Tourism Ireland.

If finding paid work is proving difficult working for a room and board in a hostel can keep your funds from dropping too low. If any paid vacancies do crop up in the hostel then most likely hostel owners will look towards their current volunteers for the role.

We noted during our own stay with Paddywagon that they employ people on work exchanges. We enjoyed Paddywagon's hospitality in Northern Ireland but most of their business is south of the border, in Dublin, Cork, Dingle Peninsula, Derry and Killarney. More hostels in Ireland open to work exchanges are listed in The Working Traveller, or we recommend joining a network such as the Irish based HelpStay.


Teaching & TEFL in Ireland

Much of Ireland's TEFL industry is seasonal, according to Quinn's World of TEFL; in summer schools between May and September. Over 90% of English language students in Ireland study with an MEI member school, websites of which can be found via a search at Lots of schools are also listed on


Au Pair & Nanny Jobs

For years the au pair system provided Irish girls - including one half of the team behind this site - with a way out of the country and into jobs abroad, so much so that an au pair with an Irish accent was almost a cliché. Ireland is now as likely to welcome au pairs as export them. TheBestAuPair provide a succinct guide to becoming an au pair in Ireland. More jobs can be found through


Other Ways to Work in Ireland

Though the Irish half of PAYAway/OJC speaks two foreign languages I'm going to stick my neck out and say, generally, the Irish are as awful as Brits when it comes to speaking another language. Those that can will find opportunities via

Even for monolingual job seekers numerous other opportunities will present themselves in the country. Rachel (see above), one traveller on a working holiday visa, suggests Christmas as a great time to work in retail, saving for the summer while it is cold and miserable, stating: “If you’re completely flexible then you’re almost guaranteed a job.


Low Cost Options for Volunteering

From local NGOs to work exchanges we track down and list a number of opportunities for free or cheap volunteer work in Ireland on another website in our small group.


Other Ways to Travel or Stay for Free

Stay for free in return for caring for local residents' homes or pets. Join Trusted Housesitters to live rent free as a house sitter (Americans may prefer this link).You can get a free $25 Airbnb credit from us here.


More Resources from our Sites

Directory > UK & Ireland Links - A selection of links for finding work, searching for a home and travelling in Ireland.
Jobs in the UK & Ireland - Current vacancies from the Jobs Abroad Bulletin.


More Working in Ireland Resources

Move to Dublin - A guide on how to live, study English and find a job in Dublin.


Articles on Living, Working & Travelling in Ireland

Articles from our sites and blogs
A Pig in a Cage. On Antibiotics
Recruitment in Ireland
Work 3 Hours at a Paddywagon Hostel in Ireland and Stay for Free
A Peaceful Pint in O’Tooles Bar, Loughinisland
Photos of People Taking Photos of… The Giant’s Causeway

Articles on other websites and blogs:
Laura’s Advice to Find a Paid Internship in Dublin – And Enjoy Life There - Pauline asks her friend to share her experience about her paid internship in Ireland.
Working in Ireland: A Filipina’s Expat Experience - Thelma Alberts, a Filipino expat married to a German, worked as a masseuse in Ireland.


Got information about living, travelling or working in Ireland? Write us an article or pass on a tip to other travellers here