Glossary – Ireland

  1. Beds

    Beds in Ireland are generally smaller than in the US, Canada, Australia or New Zealand.
    There are the following sizes:
    standard double (4.6 ft. - ca. 1,40 x 1,90 cm)
    Queen size (5 ft. - ca. 1,52 x 1,98 cm) and
    King size (6 ft. - ca. 1,83 x 1,98 cm)

    Most rooms will have a standard double or a queen size bed. Should you need a kings please let us know at the time of booking. We will do our best to accommodate you, but please understand that that we cannot guarantee a particular size as most B&Bs or inns we use have a limited number of rooms and king size is the exception to the rule.

  2. Breakdown/accident

    An emergency telephone number will be included in the documents you receive from Avis. Emergency phone calls can be made free of charge from any public telephone. Emergency phone numbers are 999 or 112 for police, a medical emergency or a fire.

  3. Cash

    Ireland is part of the European Currency Union and therefore uses the euro. ATMs are widely available. All common international credit cards are accepted, but you will need to know your credit card PIN number.

  4. Check in

    Normal check in times are between 4:30 and 6 pm unless you find different times in your travel documents.
    If you are planning to arrive late please contact your host.

  5. Climate

    Ireland is known for its rainy weather, which is also a common topic of conversation among the locals. The weather can also change very quickly, so rain gear should be taken along even if the day starts out sunny. Otherwise, temperatures are pleasantly moderate in both summer and winter.

  6. Dinner

    Dinner can be ordered in advance at many B&Bs. Since the meal will be home cooked from fresh ingredients, the hosts need to be informed at least one day in advance if dinner is desired.

  7. Directions

    Although brief directions are included in your travel documents, we recommend buying a good road atlas. The best solution is always a GPS unit. While rented units are often available, it may be wiser to buy your own, if you do not already have one, and download the map of the Ireland prior to departure.

  8. Driving

    In Ireland cars drive on the left and pass on the right. In this respect, please note the following:
    - When turning left make sure you watch for traffic from the right, which normally has the right-of-way.
    - Cars move clockwise in roundabouts. Always yield to vehicles already in the roundabout.
    - Parking: Restricted parking and no parking areas are marked by signs. Vehicles blocking traffic are often towed away. Otherwise, a wheel clamp may be applied. Very little free parking is available in downtown areas. Parking along the street often requires feeding a parking meter, which may be located some distance from the car. After you’ve deposited the required fee, the meter will produce a ticket that must be placed in the front windshield.
    - Front and rear seat belts are obligatory in the Ireland. Children under the age of 12 must sit in the back.
    - It is illegal to talk on a hand-held mobile phone while operating a motor vehicle.
    - Be careful about drinking and driving: A driver whose blood alcohol level exceeds 0.8 will be considered legally intoxicated. Alcohol consumption is generally allowed from age 18.
    - An international driving permit is not required if you have a driving license printed in English that has been valid for at least two years.
    - It is illegal to use a hand-held mobile phone while driving in the Ireland.

    Speed limits:
    In towns: 50 km (31 mph)
    On 4-lane motorways: 120 km (74 mph)
    On 2-lane highways: 100 km (62 mph)

  9. Electricity

    Outlets in Ireland are 220 volt. Most appliances will require adapters, which can be purchased at airports and locally.

  10. Health insurance

    Check to make sure your health insurance covers travel abroad. If not, you would be wise to take out travel insurance.

  11. Rental Car minimum age

    The minimum age for hiring a rental car in Ireland is 26.
    Drivers must have held a valid driver's license for at least two years and been eligible to operate a motor vehicle for at least eight years.
    Car group O (van): Minimum age: 28.
    Drivers must have been eligible to operate a motor vehicle for at least 10 years.
    Car groups I, L, G, HL (minivan, 4x4, luxury cars): Minimum age: 30.
    Drivers must have been eligible to operate a motor vehicle for at least 12 years.

    The maximum age for renting a car is 74 years.

    More detailed information is available at:

  12. Road Toll

    Toll roads
    Many motorways in Ireland are toll roads. Rates vary, depending on the route. Additional information can be found here:

    Dublin's ring road (M50) is a toll road. Drivers of all vehicles using the section of the M50 between Junction 6 and Junction 7 are liable to pay a toll. There is no cash payment facility available at the tolling point on the M50. Tolls must be paid by 8pm on the day following the journey. Payment can be made by quoting the vehicle registration number:
    - online at
    - by telephone using a credit or laser card on: 1890 50 10 50
    - by cash at a Payzone branded outlet nationwide
    It is important to retain evidence of your payment as this may be required by the car rental company.

  13. Smoking

    Smoking is banned in enclosed public spaces, including bars and restaurants. Violators will be fined, so please observe no-smoking signs.

  14. Time zone

    Ireland is located in the Western European Time Zone. Summer Time is used between the end of March and the end of October, meaning clocks are moved forward an hour during that period.

    Time differences:
    Central Europe: + 1 hour
    East coast: - 5 hours
    West coast: - 8 hours.

  15. Tipping

    Hotels: Tipping maids or service staff is not necessarily expected.
    Restaurants: Service is normally included in the restaurant check. If not, a tip of 10-12% is appropriate.
    Porters: A tip of 1-2 euros per suitcase carried.
    Taxi: Round up to the nearest euro.
    Bar tenders: No tip expected.

  16. Using the telephone

    Most public phones require coins or a credit card.

    Country codes for calls placed from Ireland:
    USA/Canada: 00 1 + phone number

    Country codes for placing calls to Ireland:
    USA/Canada: 011 353 + phone number

    Important Numbers:
    Emergency (free): 999 or 112
    Information: 11890 or 11850.

  17. Weights and measures

    Inch = 2.54 cm
    Foot = 30.48 cm
    Yard = 91.44 cm
    Mile = 1.609 km

    Pint = 0.57 l
    Gallon = 4.55 l

    Pound = 454 g
    Ounce = 28.35 g