Ireland: Best Deals & Top Ways to Save

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Deal Expert, Chicago
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Kilkenny

With some planning, Ireland can be done — and be properly enjoyed — on a budget. Here’s how:

  • Do-it-yourself booking vs. vacation packagers: Like many other top destinations, it can pay to book through a vacation provider as they are able to negotiate further discounted rates at hotels, inns and B&Bs and work with designated airlines to buy in bulk to bring down the price. Because Ireland is a destination that has so much appeal from older travelers and less experienced travelers, dozens of companies provide comprehensive tour packages departing from North America.
  • Stays: For those willing to do their research, hotel pricing can be more expensive than smaller independently owned inns and bed & breakfasts dotted across the country. Plus many of these stays include a meal or two, bringing down the price of the trip and adding twofold in charm. Yes, this is a country of hundreds of castles, but you don’t have to be to royalty to stay here: you just have to do your homework ahead of time.
  • Destinations: Outside of popular Dublin, there are great lodging deals along the Ring of Kerry, which is equally beautiful and even more rural.
  • Dining: One way to cut down on costs is planning casual picnics to enjoy the scenery people are flocking there for. Dinners of simple pub food don’t add much more onto a bar tab.
  • Sightseeing: Many visitors opt to purchase a Heritage Card, which gives free entry to most of the historic sites owned by the government. As of 2015, it costs €25 per adult. Seniors 60 and older are €20.
  • Getting around: Taking a taxi from Dublin Airport can be very costly: about a third of the cost, however, is taking the bus into the city center and can be a more efficient means of transportation than a cab.
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