Dublin is the capital of the Republic of Ireland. It’s a city steeped in history, with historic buildings standing next to modern architecture. Dublin experienced an economic boom between 1995 and 2007 which led to an influx of foreign companies and expats. Dublin is now a cosmopolitan city but it has retained its Irish charm and, of course, its pubs.
If you are considering moving to Dublin, the various costs listed below will help you make an informed decision on what costs are involved when moving and living in the Emerald Isle.
Quick Dublin Facts:
- Population: 1,450,701 (2021)
- Official Language: English (de facto) with 182 languages being spoken in the city, including Gaelic, Polish, French, Lithuanian, Romanian, Chinese and many others.
- GDP Per Capita: $85,420 USD (2021)
- Pubs and Guinness: There are 666 licensed pubs in the City of Dublin and the city produces 10 million pints of Guinness a day.
- Currency: Euro (€, EUR). As of early 2023, $1 USD = €0.94 EUR, £1 = €1.14 EUR, $1 CAD = €0.69 EUR, $1 AUD = €0.63 EUR
1. Moving and Shipping Costs to Dublin
Sample container shipping rates to Ireland from various other countries
2. Dublin Housing Costs
Dublin house prices were highly inflated; however, in recent years they have dropped to a more acceptable level. Dublin is the most expensive city in Ireland and ranks the 47th most expensive city in the world to live in. Prices obviously vary from area to area but the figures below will give you an indication of what’s available at what price.
Monthly Rental Prices in Dublin:
- 1 bedroom flat (apartment) in City Centre: €1,900+
- 1 bedroom flat outside the City Centre: €1,600+
- 3 bedroom flat in City Centre: €3,500+
- 3 bedroom flat outside the City Centre: €2,700+
Dublin Home Purchase Prices:
- Price per square metre (10.7 square feet) to buy in City Centre: €7,300+
- Price per square metre (10.7 square feet) to buy outside City: €4,700+
Dublin Housing Cost Comparison:
This is how rents in Dublin compare with other cities around the globe.
- London is 8.3% more expensive
- New York is 39.6% more expensive
- Los Angeles is 18.4% more expensive
- Toronto is 24.3% cheaper
- Vancouver is 15.5% cheaper
- Cape Town is 217.7% cheaper
- Sydney is 7.5% cheaper
- Melbourne is 53.6% cheaper
- Paris is 40.1% cheaper
- Dubai is 22.4% cheaper
How to Save on Housing Costs:
- Share a Flat or House: Dublin is a city with a wide selection of housing options. With a house share you will have your own room, or, for a cheaper option, you can share a room. The bathroom/s will be shared with other people in the house. There are many flats available for shared rental as well. Have a look at Spot A Home, Rent.ie, Daft.ie and Craigslist and find someone you can get on with to share the costs with you.
- Different Areas – Different Prices: Ballsbridge and Donnybrook are upmarket areas recommended to those who prefer a quiet lifestyle. There are lovely houses in these areas which have large gardens and privacy. For the professional who wants to experience the nightlife of Dublin, then Temple Bar is the place to be. It’s expensive but this is where Dublin’s popular restaurants, bars and restaurants are. Ranelagh and Clontarf are upmarket suburbs which are popular with expats. These suburbs are only 10 minutes from the city centre and are great for those who want to use public transport
3. Dublin Food, Grocery and Restaurant Costs
Dublin has a good selection of restaurants, pubs and food stores.
- Inexpensive Restaurant: €20.00
- Takeout Coffee: €3.60
- Bottle of Coke: €2.20
- 1L of Milk: €1.30
- Loaf of Bread: €1.75
- 12 Eggs: €3.30
- 1kg Chicken: €9.30
- 1kg Beef: €10.80
- 1kg Apples: €2.50
- 1kg White Rice: €1.40
This is how restaurants and food prices compare with other major cities in the world.
- New York restaurants are 17.6% more expensive and groceries are 41.9% more expensive than Dublin.
- Los Angeles restaurants are 7.1% more expensive and groceries are 23.1% more expensive than Dublin.
- London restaurants are 8% cheaper and groceries are 9.3% cheaper than Dublin.
- Toronto restaurants are 8.8% cheaper and groceries are 12.6% more expensive than Dublin.
- Vancouver restaurants are 15.6% cheaper and groceries are 15.8% more expensive than Dublin.
- Cape Town restaurants are 157.6% cheaper and groceries are 106.7% cheaper than Dublin.
- Sydney restaurants are 5.4% cheaper and groceries are 23.7% more expensive than Dublin.
- Melbourne restaurants are 10.3% cheaper and groceries are 24.5% more expensive than Dublin.
- Paris restaurants are 19.8% cheaper and groceries are 20.2% more expensive than Dublin.
- Dubai restaurants are 15% cheaper and groceries are 20.8% cheaper than Dublin.
Bonus Tips for Cheaper Food, Restaurants and Groceries:
- Know your supermarkets: Dublin has a large selection of supermarkets and other stores to suit every income level and palate. Tesco, Lidl and Eurasia are popular for basic foods. Marks and Spencer and Dunnes are more expensive but have a wide variety of fresh foods. There are a number of independent grocers and health shops which sell organic foods. Farmers’ markets are also popular. Try Howth Market which is open every weekend and public holidays.
- Find Cheap Eats: Trip Advisor, 10Best, Lovin Dublin, Yelp and Visit Dublin all have their own guides to cheap eats in Dublin, which include everything from traditional Irish stew to Polish cuisine.
4. Dublin Alcohol Costs
Dublin not only has 666 licensed pubs, it also has restaurants and clubs, ready to welcome everyone in the true Irish style. The following is a list of basic prices of beer and wine from the supermarket and restaurants.
- Pint (0.6L) domestic beer at a restaurant/pub: €6.00
- Bottle of imported beer at a restaurant/pub: €6.00
- Pint (0.6L) domestic beer at a supermarket: €2.70
- Bottle of imported beer at a supermarket: €3.50
- Mid-range bottle of wine at a supermarket: €12.00
How to Drink For Less in Dublin:
- Keep an eye on the local papers and websites for specials over weekends and public holidays
- Dublin has many pubs and bars which offer cheap drinks at various times of the day and week. Have a look at the following sites to see which ones suit your mood and pocket – FourSquare, Publin, Yelp, Dublin Live and Irish Central.
- Scour the areas around Trinity College and other tertiary institutions to find the best alcohol deals
5. Dublin Transportation Fares
Dublin uses trains, trams and buses to get people around the area. The majority of the bus routes are run by Dublin Bus. Due to Dublin’s traffic congestion, bus journeys can take a while in peak periods. The rail services are run by Irish Rail, but it isn’t that extensive. DART (Dublin Area Rapid Transit) runs from the city centre to Bray in the south and to Howth in the north. It’s a great way to see Dublin Bay.
Here are some example ticket costs.
- Adult single – €2.00
- One day ticket for bus, tram and train – €8.75
- Monthly season ticket for bus, tram and train – €120.00
- Yearly season ticket for bus, tram and train – €1,050.00
How To Save Money on Public Transport:
- Buy a Leap Card and your fares will be up to 20% cheaper
- Buy a bike. There is a good system of cycle lanes all around the city
- Walk. The city is not that big, and exercise is always good
6. Cost of Internet in Dublin
Here are some sample broadband internet prices from early 2023 for unlimited downloads:
- Virgin Media: €44.00 per month for the first four months, then €70.00 a month for the next eight months (12-month contract)
7. Cost of Clothing, Personal Items, Gym and Leisure
July is Dublin’s hottest month with an average temperature of 16°C. Winter’s coldest month is January, when the average temperature is 5°C. August is the wettest month, with 80mm of rain falling.
Like most places in this part of the world, rain is always a possibility, so it’s wise to carry an umbrella or a fold-up waterproof jacket.
Here are some clothing prices, together with other useful prices.
- Pair of Jeans: €80.00
- Summer Dress: €35.00
- Running Shoes (Trainers): €90.00
- Business Shoes: €90.00
- Short Doctor’s Visit (15 mins): €55.00
- Deodorant: €4.00
- Shampoo: €5.50
- Toilet Paper (4 rolls): €2.50
- Gym Membership: €32.00 – €55.00 per month
- Movie (cinema) Ticket: €11.00
Source: Numbeo and Expatistan
8. Cost of Owning a Car and Driving a Car in Dublin
Everyone in Ireland drives on the left. Driving in Dublin is fine but the traffic congestion during rush hour is unusually heavy for the size of the city.
If you’re moving to Dublin from within the EU, you’ll be able to exchange our licence. There are also other countries that are on the list for reciprocal exchange. You can drive on a foreign licence for 12 months before you need to get an Irish licence. If you are not from an EU country or your country is not on the list, then you will need to take a driving test after 12 months.
Here are some other sample costs of owning and operating a car in Dublin:
- Volkswagen Golf: €31,000+
- 1 litre (¼ gallon) of Gas (petrol): €1.98
- Registration Fee (if any): Vehicle Registration Tax depends on the size and age of the vehicle
- Other Fees (if any): Motor Tax is determined on the basis of the CO2 emissions of the vehicle
Source: Expatistan, Gov.ie
Ways To Save Money on Driving in Dublin:
- Car sharing or pooling is one way to save money. Try Share Your Ride.
- Taxis can sometimes be a cheaper option, especially if you are going to have to park all day. Try Uber.
9. Taxes in Dublin
No matter where you live in Eire, you will pay the same rate of tax. To learn more, go to the government’s website.
Sales Tax or VAT (Value Added Tax) is 23% in Ireland and is added to most goods and services throughout the country. Unlike in some countries, it is always included in the marked price.
Whether you own or rent your home, you will be subject to Local Property Tax based on the value of the property. Learn more about LPT in Dublin at Revenue.ie.
Finally, if you decide to buy a flat or house in Dublin you’ll have to pay stamp duty. There are various rules and concessions which apply but generally, you pay 1% of property value up to €1,000,000 and 2% thereafter.
10. Flight Costs from Dublin
If you do make the move to Dublin, here’s approximately how much it will cost to fly to other major world cities based on lowest, one-way fares from Skyscanner as of early 2023:
- New York: €220
- Los Angeles: €380
- Toronto: €380
- Vancouver: €350
- London: €15
- Dubai: €200
- Sydney: €650
- Melbourne: €650
- Cape Town: €420
- Hong Kong: €460
Other Tips on Moving to Dublin:
The costs and pricing above should give you a good idea of the cost of living in Dublin but perhaps the following extra tips will make your move go smoothly.
11. Moving to Dublin Alone
Moving anywhere can be a lonely experience, but moving to a new city can be rather daunting. Here are a few tips about settling into Dublin.
- Meetups: Dublin has lots of free meetup groups you can find on Meetup. Join Social Life Dublin, Dublin UX, Mike’s Hikes, Language Exchange and many more.
- Attend Local Events: There’s so much going on in Dublin at any given time. Find out what’s going on from Visit Dublin, Dublin Town, Dublin and 360 Dublin City.
12. Moving to Dublin with a Family
Dublin has a lot to offer families. It has beaches, the countryside and the city. Here’s some extra food for thought.
- New Parents (or parents to be): Check out Cuidiu.
- Live in a Family-friendly Area: Donnybrook and Ballsbridge are upmarket areas suitable for families. They have large houses with good-sized gardens. The southern beaches of Seapoint and further on to Killarney also have family-friendly homes and they’re close to the beach.
- Find Things To Do With The Kids: Family Fun, Day Out With the Kids, In Your Pocket and My Kids Time all have great ideas for activities and events your kids will love.
13. Moving to Dublin for Work
Moving to Dublin for work is one of the most common reasons people choose to move. While it is possible to move without a job, it makes sense to ensure there are jobs in your field before you make the move.
Dublin experienced an economic boom between 1995 and 2007. This brought many international companies into the city. Like most of the world, Ireland was hit by the recession but is now on the way to regaining its former glory. Compliance, risk and IT are some of the top professions that are needed in Dublin. The finance and banking fields are also on the lookout for talented staff.
Here are a few things to consider when moving for work:
- Salary: The costs we outlined above should give you a rough idea of how much more you’ll want to be making to make the move worthwhile. You can also check salary ranges on sites such as Glassdoor and Payscale.
- How to Find Work: If you want to have a job lined up before you move to Dublin, but aren’t sure where to begin, the following sites are good places to start: Gumtree, Monster and Recruit Ireland. You may also want to Google recruiters in your industry, as they can often help land you some initial interviews as well.
14. Moving to Dublin from Australia
There are quite a few Aussies living and working in Dublin. If you are thinking of joining them, here are a few added tips:
- Size Comparison: If you compare the size of the population of Dublin with a city in Australia, you’d be looking at a city a little smaller than Adelaide.
- Join Expat Groups: Internations offer ways of meeting up with other Australians in Dublin.
15. Moving to Dublin from Canada
There’re a considerable number of Canadians living and working in Dublin. If you’re considering making the move from Canada here are a few things to consider.
- Size: Dublin’s population in the city proper is around the same as Ottawa.
- Expat Groups: To meet up with fellow Canadians living in Dublin, have a look at the following sites – InterNations, Expat.com and Irish Canadian Society.
16. Moving to Dublin from the United States
There are many Americans living in Dublin. If you want to join them, here are a few bonus tips:
- Size: If you compare the size of the population of Dublin with a city in the States you’d be looking at Dallas.
- Expat Groups: Meeting up with fellow Americans will help you settle in Dublin quicker. Have a look at the following sites to find like-minded souls – InterNations and Meetup.
17. Moving to Dublin from the United Kingdom
There’s a large contingent of Brits living and working in Dublin. If you are going to join them, here are a few things to consider:
- Size: If you look at the population of Dublin and compare it with a city in the UK, you’d be looking at Birmingham.
- Expat Groups: If you’d like to meet people from home, then have a look at the following sites for British expat groups – InterNations and Expat.com
Hopefully, the tips and costs above are helpful. If want to get started pricing out how much it will cost you to move to Dublin you can start by comparing moving quotes here.