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The Best Time to Visit Ireland with Tickets to Dublin
The best time to visit Dublin is during the city's summer months. From June to August, the temperatures warm up, and there's plenty to see and do. The only downside is that it's the most expensive time for airfare to Dublin. You'll need to book your trip well in advance to lock in lower prices, and you can expect large crowds at the city's top attractions. If you're travelling to Ireland on a budget, book your tickets to Dublin for travel between December and February. The chilly winter temperatures mean you'll easily find cheap flights to Dublin and excellent deals from the city's top hotels. September to November and March to May are the city's two shoulder seasons. The temperatures are mild, and you won't need to bundle up too much when you leave your hotel room to explore. However, if you're booking flights to Dublin to attend St. Patrick’s Day, airfare prices soar, and you'll need to book your accommodation months in advance.
Tips for First-Time Travellers to Dublin
Rent a car
The best way to get around Dublin is with a car. You can book a vehicle with Webjet or at Dublin Airport (DUB) once your flights arrive. Car rentals are quite affordable in Ireland compared to other countries in Europe. You can expect to pay around 10 to 20 EUR ($16 to 32 AUD) per day for unlimited miles.
Dublin uses the Euro
The Republic of Ireland uses the Euro, while Northern Ireland uses the pound sterling. You can easily withdraw cash from the airport once your flights to Dublin arrive. However, most places accept credit card, so you don't need to carry a lot of money on you.
Tipping in Dublin
Once you’ve booked your flights to Dublin, you’ll need to budget for tipping. It's common to tip 10% for good service at restaurants in Dublin. If you're enjoying a pint of Guinness at a pub, tipping is only expected if table service is provided.
Use Dublin's public transport system
If you don't want to rent a car for your trip to Dublin, you can use the city's extensive public transport system to get around. Once your flights to Dublin land, buy the Leap Visitor Card at the airport. The card includes transport to and from Dublin Airport (DUB) with the public buses, and you'll have unlimited access to the buses, DART trains and commuter rails for your entire trip.
Best Things To Do on Weekends
If you're only in Dublin for the weekend, add Trinity College to your sightseeing list. Queen Elizabeth I founded the university in 1592, and the 40-acre site is home to some of the city's greatest treasures. Some of the items on exhibition include the 9th-century Book of Kells, the Books of Durrow and an ancient Irish harp. Trinity's 18th-century Long Room that boasts 200,000 books is also one of the top reasons many people book return flights to Dublin
After you've satisfied your inner history buff, make your way down to Grafton Street. It’s Dublin's top shopping district and you'll find everything from busking musicians to luxury department stores, jewellers and boutiques.
If you want to escape the bustle of the city for a few hours, plan a trip to Phoenix Park. It's the largest urban park in Europe and stretches across 1,750 acres. Many people who book flights to Dublin are surprised to learn that Phoenix is home to hundreds of wild deer and it’s where you'll find the President of Ireland's official residence. You can also visit Ashtown Castle, a 17th-century tower house and the Farmleigh House that dates back to the 1800s.
Packing Tips for Ireland
Once you've confirmed your flights to Dublin, the most important thing to add to your packing list is a raincoat. Ireland's weather is unpredictable at best and rain is frequent no matter the season. Bring along one that can easily fit into your day back in case you need it.
Waterproof phone case
If the weather takes a turn for the worse, protect your phone by packing a waterproof case. It's usually an inexpensive item you can buy before your flights to Dublin, and you'll still be able to access the touchscreen and the camera.
Waterproof hiking shoes
For day trips from Dublin to nearby national parks, you'll need a pair of waterproof hiking shoes. There are tons of beautiful trails, and you don't want to miss out because you don't have the correct footwear. Before your flights to Dublin arrive, make sure you've worn them in to avoid blisters.
While exploring Dublin, you'll need to wear layers to beat the chill. Pack a pair of long-sleeved thermals and underwear to keep yourself warm. You can put a pair in your hand luggage and quickly change into your thermals once your flights to Dublin land at Dublin Airport (DUB.)
When is The Best Time to Visit Dublin?
The best time to visit Dublin is during the summer months when the weather is warmer. But the higher temperatures and the city's many festivals attract tourists from all over. Expect longer lines at attractions, higher hotel rates and airfare prices.
If you are travelling on a budget and want to experience Dublin with fewer crowds, winter is the best option. While it is cold, with plenty of rainfall, you'll find the best hotel deals. However, with winter days being incredibly short, the sun rises at 8 am and sets around 4 pm, you need to plan any outdoor activities around this, and it might impact how much you can do in one day
Spring and autumn are a happy medium between the high and low seasons. The weather isn't as cold as the winter months; the crowds are thinner, and the hotels are less expensive. Autumn is also a great time to visit for lovers of the arts with multiple theatre festivals held during this time.
While travellers are few during the spring months, that changes over St. Patrick's Day. If you are going to be in town for this holiday, book well in advance to ensure you find accommodation at a reasonable price.
Airports in Dublin
Dublin International Airport
Located 10 km from the city centre, the Dublin Airport is the 16th busiest in Europe and served 28 million passengers in 2016. It's the only other airport besides Shannon Airport in Europe to offer United States border preclearance services for US bound passengers. The airport is also a hub for Ireland's regional airline Aer Lingus and is a focus city for low-cost airline Ryanair.
Getting to and from Dublin International Airport
There are three main ways you can get to and from Dublin International Airport with public transport:
Airlink is an express coach service that goes from the airport to the city's central bus station Busaras and Heuston train station. Departing outside Terminal 1 on the Arrivals level, the buses leave every 15 minutes and run from 5 am to 11:30 pm seven days a week. Tickets costs EUR 6 one-way for adults or EUR 10 return.
The Aircoach is a great option if you find yourself arriving at Dublin International early in the morning. This 24-hour coach service will take you straight to the city centre in 25 minutes. The bus departs every 15 minutes between 3:15 and 11:55 pm and every 30 minutes after that.
3. Dublin Bus
Few travellers know about taking the Dublin bus from the airport as airport workers mainly use it. It's the cheapest option to get to the city centre but isn't as quick as the express coaches. The bus departs every 10 or 30 minutes depending on the time of day and will cost you EUR 3.30 one way.