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Thinking of moving to Ireland - some advice needed

Thinking of moving to Ireland - some advice needed

Old Oct 24th 2021, 4:59 pm
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Default Thinking of moving to Ireland - some advice needed

Hello everyone,

I'm a British citizen married to a Czech woman, and we live in the Czech Republic with our two kids. We're in the process of trying to move back to the UK, but due to Brexit, this is proving extremely complicated and seemingly never-ending. We've been waiting well over four months for our Family Permit to be approved, and communication with the Home Office has been impossible. Even if we get a positive decision on our application, we'll have to go through another application for my wife's pre-settled status once we're in the UK. Needless to say, we're pretty done with the whole thing - which brings me to Ireland...

Bizarrely, despite three of us being British (my kids hold both UK and Czech passports), it is easier for us all to live in Ireland than in the UK. Due to a combo of the CTA and EU rights, there would be no hurdles for any of us to live in Ireland. As time goes by and the legal process of moving to the UK becomes increasingly frustrating, the idea of moving to Ireland has become more appealing. The only problem is, I really don't know much about life in Ireland, other than the vague notions and stereotypes you pick up of the people and culture, all of which seem pretty positive to me.

Could anyone who has made the move to Ireland from the UK shed any light on what life is like there, and particularly for foreigners? Are people generally welcoming and friendly? Are the cities and towns similar to British ones? What about health care and education? Would half-Czech half-British kids be considered outsiders at school, or is it a pretty multicultural place?

If we were to make the move, we'd be looking to live in Cork, either in Cork City or a nearby town. The area seems very appealing for a number of reasons - there's an actual city there, it's close to the sea, has an airport, probably better weather than the north of the island, etc. Of course, I'd be happy to hear about any other places people recommend.

Thanks in advance for any advice or thoughts people have. We'd obviously have to visit before making the move, but I just want to figure out if the idea itself is even worth entertaining. On one hand, it makes total sense, but on the other, it seems totally bonkers.
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Old Oct 24th 2021, 8:14 pm
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Default Re: Thinking of moving to Ireland - some advice needed

Originally Posted by Barnacle View Post
Hello everyone,

I'm a British citizen married to a Czech woman, and we live in the Czech Republic with our two kids. We're in the process of trying to move back to the UK, but due to Brexit, this is proving extremely complicated and seemingly never-ending. We've been waiting well over four months for our Family Permit to be approved, and communication with the Home Office has been impossible. Even if we get a positive decision on our application, we'll have to go through another application for my wife's pre-settled status once we're in the UK. Needless to say, we're pretty done with the whole thing - which brings me to Ireland...

Bizarrely, despite three of us being British (my kids hold both UK and Czech passports), it is easier for us all to live in Ireland than in the UK. Due to a combo of the CTA and EU rights, there would be no hurdles for any of us to live in Ireland. As time goes by and the legal process of moving to the UK becomes increasingly frustrating, the idea of moving to Ireland has become more appealing. The only problem is, I really don't know much about life in Ireland, other than the vague notions and stereotypes you pick up of the people and culture, all of which seem pretty positive to me.

Could anyone who has made the move to Ireland from the UK shed any light on what life is like there, and particularly for foreigners? Are people generally welcoming and friendly? Are the cities and towns similar to British ones? What about health care and education? Would half-Czech half-British kids be considered outsiders at school, or is it a pretty multicultural place?

If we were to make the move, we'd be looking to live in Cork, either in Cork City or a nearby town. The area seems very appealing for a number of reasons - there's an actual city there, it's close to the sea, has an airport, probably better weather than the north of the island, etc. Of course, I'd be happy to hear about any other places people recommend.

Thanks in advance for any advice or thoughts people have. We'd obviously have to visit before making the move, but I just want to figure out if the idea itself is even worth entertaining. On one hand, it makes total sense, but on the other, it seems totally bonkers.
When we moved 10 years ago it was a different time and I also have relatives here. Compared to the UK/Kent we have a better life in Ireland and can't complain really, but every life is different and depends on your personal situation at the time of your move. Especially after Brexit we're not really bothered about the UK and our jobs are for a different market anyway. Obviously a lot of other Brits have had the same idea and it seems that this is putting even more pressure on the housing market, so if you need to rent or have a limited housing budget, Cork might not be cheap. Like anywhere it depends on your budget, location and preferences. We live in Co. Galway countryside and don't have kids, so your situation will again be very different. I don't mind driving either and at weekends we just get up early and might drive 2 hours to a lake, beach or might even spend the day in Dublin if we really get bored and need a bit of city feeling. Cork is obviously the next biggest city in the Republic after Dublin and we've been a few times and often take the ferry to France from there. Like any city you will get good and bad but nowhere near the roughness you get in the UK. I also wouldn't be worried about being a foreigner and compared to the Czech Republic Ireland has a far higher foreign population. https://www.statista.com/statistics/...member-states/

Like any country you need the tools and right mindset to make it work. I don't know the reason of your move and always better to see for yourself.

Last edited by Moses2013; Oct 24th 2021 at 8:56 pm.
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Old Oct 25th 2021, 3:43 am
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Default Re: Thinking of moving to Ireland - some advice needed

Thanks, Moses, for your reply. That's very helpful.

There are a number of reasons for us wanting to leave the Czech Rep. The main one is that we want to live somewhere where English is the first language, as that's the language we speak as a family. Second, we find the culture here quite cold in general - you can live next door to people for years and never break through the invisible barrier between you and them.

If the move to the UK came through, we'd be looking to live in a small town rather than a city - somewhere close to nature, but ideally not too far from a city. The criteria would be the same if we moved to Ireland. We want to avoid big cities and the obvious problems that come with them. I'm fortunate that I can make a living remotely, but my wife would need to find a job in a town, probably in the hospitality sector. Ultimately, we want to live somewhere that is safe and friendly for our children.

To be honest, I've been somewhat reluctant about the move to the UK for a while. It's a country in decline with plenty of seemingly unresolvable problems, particularly post-Brexit. And the way we're being treated by the Home Office is enough to make us feel like looking elsewhere. My major concern with a move to Ireland is that we'd end up feeling like we don't really belong, and that sense of belonging is pretty important long-term. Plus the unfamiliarity of it all - something that can be fun when you are young and childless but not so much when you are a parent. Would you say it's pretty easy to integrate in Ireland and feel settled?

Interestingly, Galway City was the other place I was looking at. Looks a nice little place, but it perhaps feels a bit further away from the rest of the world than Cork.

Thanks again.
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Old Oct 25th 2021, 10:51 am
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Default Re: Thinking of moving to Ireland - some advice needed

Ireland is quite an open country and in general I do find people are more friendly than what I've experienced in many other European countries. People are very family orientated here and children seem to be welcome. Of course it's never easy to find really good friends when you are new to the area, especially when people have big families and friends they know from school days (same everywhere). What people do complain about is the cost of childcare (creche) but if you are working from home that might not be an issue. Irish love their traditional sports, so it might help when kids are active and get into Gaelic football and hurling. If you like the outdoors "rain or shine", Ireland has a lot to offer. Galway can feel like you are further away from the rest of the world sometimes and compared to Cork it seems we are missing some of the larger stores. Then again Galway City has a nicer setting with prom for walks, very touristic and Cork is more industrial with no direct beaches. The nicer areas are outside of Cork City and even Galway is actually closer to Dublin than Cork.
Other things to consider are Irish language for kids https://www.citizensinformation.ie/e...rom_irish.html
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Old Oct 31st 2021, 12:45 pm
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Default Re: Thinking of moving to Ireland - some advice needed

Friendliness and the whole family orientation is a very big plus in Ireland. Of all countries, I think Ireland is one of the best, if not the best places to raise children. The school system in Ireland is also very accepting and more so in tune with family life than anywhere, so I have found. The whole country also has in general a very welcoming attitude. I'd say, it's hard not to like the Irish mentality.

The only challenge Ireland has is the high cost of everything. Car insurance will be a lot more than you're used to, whether it's the UK or the Czech republic you're comparing with. Then there is housing, Ireland has a massive housing crisis, which might limit your move to some rural region of Ireland, - but again making you dependent of a car. Albeit the job market is also very welcoming, beware that disagreements in the workplace even if it's not your fault often result in blacklisting, even more so than in the UK. Ireland is a small country and somebody knowing somebody is a lot more often, and friends doing friends nice favours is a lot stronger than you might be used to. This also often results in a limited market and higher prices, the housing crisis is largely built on that problem.

Last edited by OrangeMango; Oct 31st 2021 at 1:09 pm.
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