Overland Ireland Travel

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Visiting Ireland[edit]

Give a brief overview of what it's like to visit. How easy is the border, how safe is the country, are there great things to see and do, etc.

  • Going into Ireland is as easy as having a US or Canadian passport. Of course, an EU passport makes it simple as well. Customs and Immigration consisted of two bored uniformed chaps chatting with each other and largely ignoring the tourists offloading the plane.
  • Ireland feels extremely safe. The locals love Americans, and are extremely friendly.
  • Maps are absolutely required, in addition to whatever GPS you use, be it a Garmin or Waze. The roads are often twisty and the electronic devices sometimes are confusing.

Entering Ireland with a Car or Motorbike[edit]

Correct as of: (date last confirmed correct)

Required Paperwork[edit]

(To check if you need a travel Visa for Ireland, application instructions and fees see: Ireland Visa online application at VisaHQ.com)
List the paperwork required to enter with a vehicle, including number of copies

Process at border[edit]

Briefly describe the process at the border to enter with a vehicle

Cost of entry[edit]

State the cost for a vehicle to enter

Permitted length of stay[edit]

A foreign registered vehicle can stay up to 6 months in any country within EU.

EU includes: Austria, Italy, Belgium, Latvia, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Croatia, Luxembourg, Cyprus Malta, Czech Republic, Netherlands, Denmark, Poland, Estonia, Portugal, Finland, Romania, France, Slovakia, Germany, Slovenia, Greece, Spain, Hungary, Sweden & Ireland

However, you must pay extra attention and study carefully your stay in the Schengen Zone which allows only 3 months every 6 months per year.

The Schengen Member States include: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland & Liechtenstein. More info about Schengen Zone Visa at: [[1]]

For example Switzerland, Norway or Liechtenstein belong to the Schengen Zone (which literally means free movement) but in the EU. Also countries like Serbia, Albania, FYROM, Bosnia or Belarus do not belong to any group (EU or Schengen Zone)

Extension of stay[edit]

Describe the process to extend the permitted length of entry for the vehicle, if possible.

Storing a vehicle and temporarily leaving the country[edit]

Find detailed information, price lists and contacts here: https://www.motofeirme.com/about/

Exiting with a vehicle[edit]

Describe the paperwork requirements and process at the border to exit.

Driving in Ireland[edit]

Recommended books for Overlanding in Ireland[edit]

Lonely Planet Ireland (travel Guide)
Lonely Planet Ireland (travel Guide)
by Lonely Planet, Fionn Davenport, Damian Harper, Cat...
From $15.01 on Amazon
Work Less To Live Your Dreams: A Practical Guide To Sa...
Work Less To Live Your Dreams: A Practical Guide To Sa...
by Dan Grec
From $click on Amazon
Overlanders' Handbook: Worldwide Route And Planning Gu...
Overlanders' Handbook: Worldwide Route And Planning Gu...
by Chris Scott
From $22.49 on Amazon
Adventure Motorcycling Handbook: A Route & Planning Gu...
Adventure Motorcycling Handbook: A Route & Planning Gu...
by Chris Scott
From $click on Amazon
Footprint Ireland Handbook (2nd Edition)
Footprint Ireland Handbook (2nd Edition)
by Sean Sheehan, Patricia M. Levy
From $15.92 on Amazon
TRAVELIVING - a romantic & practical guide

TRAVELIVING - a romantic & practical guide
by The Pin Project

at 10$ on thepinproject.eu

Travel insurance for Ireland[edit]

World Nomads offer the most flexible Travel Insurance at the best prices for multi-country / multi-year trips. You can buy, extend and claim online, even after you've left home.

Vehicle insurance requirements[edit]

Vehicles must have valid Third Party insurance cover. Comprehensive cover is encouraged as Medical Care in Ireland is expensive.

You can buy online through the web or from an agent.

The famous Green Card goes automatically (and free of charge) with the national/regional insurance but the vehicle must be registered in EU and the driver needs to have an EU driving license. Just ask it from your agent.

EU insurance companies will only handle clients that are residents/ citizens of EU and have an EU license to drive/ ride within the EU territory.

For foreign registered vehicles you will need what in Europe is called Temporary Frontier Insurance. More info & costs: [2] [3] [4]

Cost of vehicle insurance[edit]

State the price of insurance and a time period.

Where to purchase vehicle insurance[edit]

Describe where insurance can be purchased.

Driving license[edit]

State the kind of driving licenses required. i.e. International Driving Permit.

Driving side of road[edit]

LHD Vehicles can be driven by all in Ireland.

Mandatory items in vehicle[edit]

State any mandatory items that must be carried in the vehicle. (i.e. safety triangle, first aid kit, fire extinguisher, etc.)


General Road quality[edit]

Motorways (M Roads) are excellent quality, fast and cheap tolls. Speed is limited to a strict 120km/h. They are all dual lane. Note: The motorway network is limited in Ireland, especially to the North and South West.

National Roads (N Roads) are generally built to motorway standard but can be a single lane in either direction. Chances to safely overtake in places can be limited. Be prepared for long sections stuck behind slower traffic. Speed limit is generally 100km/h but can be as low as 50km/h near towns. Exercise caution in rural areas as live stock and slow moving rural vehicles can be an issue. They are generally well maintained.

Regional Roads (R Roads) are usually 60 to 80km/h roads for regional access. They can be twisty, blind and poorly maintained in regions. Whilst completely drive-able in any vehicle, you should exercise caution to prevent accidents with other uses and damage to your car on rough sections or pot holes.

Cities: Most city roads are limited to 50km/h with right of way generally yield to pedestrians. Be mindful of cyclists in urban areas. One way systems are common in addition to 'Bus / Taxi' only roads that may be poorly sign posted.

Road signs[edit]

Briefly describe the overall quality & existence of road signs for directions and hazards.

Toll roads[edit]

Most major motorways are tolled but the relative cost is low (e.g. 7 EURO would cover the two tolls on the Dublin to Galway motorway) All routes have secondary roads that would take marginally longer and are not tolled. Tolled roads are clearly sign posted and all are booths. Most accept cash and card. Note: Ireland has limited motorway networks to the North and extreme South West, as such, even if the distance is small, bear in mind the roads will quickly become slower with 60 to 80km/h a more realistic average speed off the motorways.

Bribery in Ireland[edit]

Bribery or corruption from State officials is unheard of in Ireland. There is one State police force known as 'An Garda Siochana' in the Republic of Ireland. In Northern Ireland, the police force is known as the PSNI (Police Service of Northern Ireland)


Checkpoints are usually in the form of mobile speed checks conducted by An Garda Siochana. The tolerance for speeding is low with seemingly open sections of road having low limits e.g. 50km/h & 30km/h zones are not uncommon near towns. Motorways have a strict 120km/h limit. Other checkpoints are usually for DUI (Drink) related driving and Tax / Insurance spot checks. Police are approachable and friendly.

Traveling with pets[edit]

List the entry requirements and anything else required to travel with a pet.

Gas price in Ireland and Diesel price in Ireland[edit]

Last updated: October 2012

Currency and unit to display:

Gasoline Grade Price
Unleaded €1.67 EUR per Liter[1]
Diesel €1.57 EUR per Liter[1]

Gas and Diesel Availability / Frequency[edit]

Gas (Petrol) and Diesel are sold at every station in the country and is perfect quality for all cars. However, amenities at stations can vary. Most do not have public restrooms and limited facilities for maintenance / repair. In the rural areas, there can be significant distance between Stations but nearly all towns will contain one. Recommend to have at least 80km of reserve fuel to allow for slow roads and sections.

Gas and Diesel Quality[edit]

Gas (Petrol) and Diesel are of good quality in Ireland. High performance fuel is not common however and most garages sell one grade only. If you are driving a high octane vehicle, it is recommended to bring an Octane booster. Stations will sell both Diesel and Petrol. Be sure to check the pump before filling. Most stations, unlike the US for example, allow you to fill before paying for fuel. Paying at the pump is becoming common but still not widespread.

Note: Only buy fuel from brand stations if possible. Ireland has had a history of laundered fuel, especially diesel, which can have a significant impact on the engine. Unsavory stations are generally far cheaper than competing stations and will not be officially branded.

Safety and Security Considerations[edit]

Driving at night[edit]

Discuss driving at night and if it should it be avoided. Mention why.

Vehicle parking[edit]

On street parking is generally safe but limited in cities. Valuables should not be left in sight and vehicles should be locked. GPS's and other dash mounted units should be removed. Parking in the cities can be expensive (€3+ per hour) but some streets offer free street parking after 6 / 7pm and on weekends. Signage is usually easily visible and should be checked. On street Pay N' Display parking is common. Clamping is however common, so be sure to ask if unsure. Release fee's can be excessive often in the region of €100+

Note: Extra care should be exercised in remote areas such as campsites, trails and State Parks. Theft from cars is common in these isolated car parks as they are remote and unpatrolled. Aggressive / confrontation robbery however is extremely unlikely as they are usually opportunistic thefts.

Special driving considerations[edit]

A List of special things to be careful of (i.e. Unsigned speed bumps, abnormal road rules, people or animals on the road, etc.).
List any roads that are not recommended to drive for safety or other security reasons.

Security advisories and information[edit]

Camping in Ireland[edit]

Describe if organized "pay" camping is common. List the facilities commonly found at these campsites.
List the approximate average price range of camping in organized campgrounds.
Also discuss the possibility of "wild" or "roadside" camping. How common is it? Is it considered safe, or a bad idea.

Camping guide books[edit]

List and link to books specifically for camping.

Drinking water[edit]

Water is safe to drink on the entire island. There are extremely limited areas in the rural sections that may have a 'boil notice' This will be communicated by your hosts if you are staying in a lodging. Water however can be generally considered safe to drink however it can be 'hard' in the West and other limestone rich areas. Buying bottled water is unlikely and unnecessary.


Paper maps[edit]

Reise Know-How are amoung the best paper maps. Purchase paper maps before arriving in Ireland

Ireland & Northern Ireland 1:350,000 Travel Map, Water...
Ireland & Northern Ireland 1:350,000 Travel Map, Water...
by Reise Knowhow
From $12.95 on Amazon
Ireland (national Geographic Adventure Map)
Ireland (national Geographic Adventure Map)
by National Geographic Maps - Adventure
From $8.36 on Amazon
Ireland (national Geographic Adventure Map)
Ireland (national Geographic Adventure Map)
by National Geographic Maps - Adventure
From $8.36 on Amazon
Lonely Planet Ireland (travel Guide)
Lonely Planet Ireland (travel Guide)
by Lonely Planet, Fionn Davenport, Damian Harper, Cat...
From $15.01 on Amazon

GPS Maps of Ireland[edit]

Review different GPS companies, quality and coverage (Tomtom, Garmin, OSM, Tracks4Africa). (with links to each).

GPS co-ordinates for camping, propane, gas, repairs, etc. in Ireland[edit]

  • iOverlander is a website and iPhone application designed by Overlanders, for Overlanders. It contains GPS co-ordinates and reviews for camping, hotels, propane, water, mechanics, borders and much more.

Link to sites that have a list of GPS co-ordinates (or directions) for camping locations (including "wild" campsites), propane filling, gas stations, repair shops, places of interest, etc.

Special Overland Travel interests[edit]

List any special items / places that are popular with Overlanders

Vehicle Maintenance[edit]


4x4s / Trucks


Local Garages[edit]

Add known good mechanics here.

Buy or sell a car or motorbike in Ireland[edit]

Find detailed information, price lists and contacts for buying a used motorbike in Cork, Ireland here: https://www.motofeirme.com/about/

Describe how a foreigner can sell a foreign-plated vehicle, or list not possible.'


Links to the source of any information - blogs or discussion forums, etc.

  1. 1.0 1.1 World petrol prices, gas prices, diesel prices|MyTravelCost.com

Helpful External links[edit]

Add any helpful external links here.