Travel Tips for Ireland, Updated Intl. Guide – Travel Medicine, Inc.
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Capital: Dublin

Time Zone: +1 hour.
Tel. Country Code: 353
USADirect Tel.: 1
Electrical Standards: Electrical current is 230/50 (volts/hz). United Kingdom Style Adaptor Plug. Grounding Adaptor Plug C.


Europe, Russia and former the Soviet Union countries vary widely in travel risks and adequacy of health care delivery. Water- and food-borne illnesses such as travelers' diarrhea, typhoid and Giardia are threats outside of Western Europe. Insect-transmitted diseases, such as Lyme disease and tick-borne encephalitis are common in wooded, rural areas in most countries, including Western Europe.


World Health Organization
Travel Health Services
Country Insights
Travel Warnings
Consular Information
Foreign Commonweatlh Office


• U.S. Embassy
42 Elgin Road
Tel: [353] (1) 668-8777
Tel: after hours: [353] (1) 668-9612
Fax: [353] (1) 668-8056

• Embassy of Canada
7-8 Wilton Terrace
Tel: [353] (1) 234-4000
Tel: after hours: [353] (1) 478-1476
Emergency toll-free to Ottawa: 00-800-2326-6831
Fax: 353 (1) 234-4001

• British Embassy
29 Merrion Road
Tel: [353] (1) 205 3700
Fax: [353] (1) 205 3890 Consular/Passport/Visa


HIV Test: Not required.

Required Vaccinations: None required.


Passport/Visa: Ireland is a highly developed democracy with a modern economy. Tourist facilities are widely available. 
ENTRY/EXIT REQUIREMENTS: A passport is necessary, but a visa is not required for tourist or business stays of up to three months. Visit the Embassy of Ireland web site for the most current visa information, or contact the embassy at 2234 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008, tel: (202) 462-3939, or the nearest Irish consulate in Boston, Chicago, New York or San Francisco. Information about dual nationality or the prevention of international child abduction can be found on our web site.


Hepatitis A: Recommended for all travelers >1 year of age not previously immunized against hepatitis A who wish added protection.

Hepatitis B: Recommended for all non-immune travelers at potential risk for acquiring this infection. Hepatitis B is transmitted via infected blood or bodily fluids. Travelers may be exposed by needle sharing and unprotected sex; from acupuncture, tattooing or body piercing; when receiving non-sterile medical or dental injections, or unscreened blood transfusions; by direct contact with open skin sores on an infected person. Recommended for long-term travelers, expatriates, and any traveler requesting protection against hepatitis B infection.

Influenza: Recommended for all travelers from November through April.

Routine Immunizations: Immunizations against tetanus-diphtheria, measles, mumps, rubella (MMR vaccine) and varicella (chickenpox) should be updated, if necessary, before departure. MMR protection is especially important for any female of childbearing age who may become pregnant.
• In addition to tetanus, all travelers, including adults, should be fully immunized against diphtheria. A booster dose of a diphtheria-containing vaccine (Td or Tdap vaccine) should be given to those who have not received a dose within the previous 10 years.
Note: ADACEL and Boostrix are new tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis (Tdap) vaccines that not only boost immunity against diphtheria and tetanus, but have the advantage of also protecting against pertussis (whooping cough), a serious disease in adults as well as children. The Tdap vaccines can be administered in place of the Td vaccine when a booster is indicated.


All travelers should be up-to-date on their immunizations and are advised to carry a medical kit as well as antibiotics to treat travelers diarrhea or other infections. Travelers who are taking regular medications should carry them properly labeled and in sufficient quantity to last for the duration of their trip; they should not expect to obtain prescription or over-the-counter drugs in local stores or pharmacies in this country - the equivalent drugs may not be available.
• Travelers are advised to obtain comprehensive travel insurance with specific overseas coverage. Policies should cover: ground and air ambulance transport, including evacuation to home country; payment of hospital bills; 24-hour telephone assistance.

Hospitals used by travelers include:

• Beacon Hospital
Bracken Road
Tel: [353] (1) 293 6600
Emergency Department
Open 8am - 6pm. Mon - Sat
(excluding Bank Holiday weekends)
Tel: [353] (1) 2939 999

• Bon Secours Hospital
Finglas Road
Tel: [353] (1) 837 5111

• Coombe Women & Infants University Hospital
Dolphins Barn
Tel: [353] (1) 408 5200

• Galway Clinic
Tel: [353] 91 785 000
The Galway Clinic is a 126 bed hospital with 36 consultant suites. The Hospital consists of the following clinical departments:
* 5 state of the art operating theatres
* 2 day surgery theatres
* 8 bed intensive care unit
* Cardiac Cath Lab & Angio Day Unit
* Accidents & Emergency

• Barringtons Hospital
Georges Quay
Tel: [353] 61 490 500

• Aut Even Hospital
Freshford Road
Tel: [353] (56) 777 5275

• St Joseph Private Hospital
Garden Hill
Tel: [353] (71) 916 2649

• South Infirmary - Victoria University Hospital
Old Blackrock Road
Tel: [353] (21) 492 6100

• Mercy University Hospital
Grenville Place
Tel: [353] (21) 427 1971


AIDS/HIV: More new HIV infections were diagnosed in Ireland and the UK during 2006 than in any previous year. Heterosexual contact is the most common route of HIV transmission among people diagnosed with HIV in these countries. Of these heterosexual cases, three quarters of people became infected overseas, mostly in Sub-Saharan Africa, where the global AIDS epidemic is taking its heaviest toll. Black and minority ethnic populations (mostly from African countries) accounted for two-thirds of new HIV infections diagnosed during 2006. In terms of HIV infections actually occurring within the UK and Ireland, gay men (and other men who have sex with men) account for most new cases. Among some parts of the gay community, condom use is low, and levels of partner change are relatively high. (Source:
• Transmission of HIV can be prevented by avoiding: sexual contact with a high-risk partner; injecting drug use with shared needles; non-sterile medical injections; unscreened blood transfusions.
• The threat of HIV/AIDS should not be a primary concern for the traveler. However, there may be a concern for a subset of travelers who may be exposed to HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, through contact with the body fluid of another person or their blood. Although travel has contributed in a general way to the global spread of AIDS, fear of traveling because of this disease is not warranted.

Accidents & Medical Insurance: Accidents and injuries are the leading cause of death among travelers under the age of 55 and are most often caused by motor vehicle and motorcycle crashes; drownings, aircraft crashes, homicides, and burns are lesser causes.
• Heart attacks cause most fatalities in older travelers.
• Infections cause only 1% of fatalities in overseas travelers, but, overall, infections are the most common cause of travel-related illness.
• MEDICAL INSURANCE: Travelers are advised to obtain, prior to departure, supplemental travel health insurance with specific overseas coverage. The policy should provide for direct payment to the overseas hospital and/or physician at the time of service and include a medical evacuation benefit. The policy should also provide 24-hour hotline access to a multilingual assistance center that can help arrange and monitor delivery of medical care and determine if medevac or air ambulance services are required.

Hepatitis: Although the risk of hepatitis A is low in this country, all travelers not previously immunized against hepatitis A should consider vaccination as a general health precaution. Travelers who are non-immune to hepatitis A (i.e. have never had the disease and have not been vaccinated) should take particular care to avoid potentially contaminated food and water. Travelers who will have access to safe food and water are at lower risk. Those at higher risk include travelers visiting friends and relatives, long-term travelers, and those visiting areas of poor sanitation.
• Hepatitis E is endemic but prevalence is not determined. Sporadic cases have been reported in people who have not traveled outside of Ireland. Transmission of the hepatitis E virus (HEV) occurs primarily through drinking water contaminated by sewage and also through raw or uncooked shellfish. Farm animals and wild boars may serve as viral reservoirs. In developing countries, prevention of hepatitis E relies primarily on the provision of clean water supplies and overall improved sanitation and hygiene. There is no vaccine.
• The overall hepatitis B (HBsAg) carrier rate in the general population is estimated at <1%. Hepatitis B is transmitted via infected blood or bodily fluids. Travelers may be exposed by needle sharing and unprotected sex; from non-sterile medical or dental injections, and acupuncture; from unscreened blood transfusions; by direct contact with open skin lesions of an infected person. The average traveler is at low risk for acquiring this infection. Vaccination against hepatitis B is recommended for: persons having casual/unprotected sex with new partners; sexual tourists; injecting drug users; long-term visitors; expatriates, and anybody wanting increased protection against the hepatitis B virus.
• Hepatitis C is endemic at a low level, with a prevalence of <0.1% in the general population. Most hepatitis C virus (HCV) is spread either through intravenous drug use or, in lesser-developed countries, through blood contamination during medical procedures. Over 200 million people around the world are infected with hepatitis C - an overall incidence of around 3.3% of population of the world. Statistically, as many people are infected with HCV as are with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.

Lyme Disease: Lyme disease is endemic with up to 15% of the population seropositive for antibodies to B. burgdorferi. Clinical cases occur among all age groups, usually during the summer months. The Ixodes ricinus tick population peaks in May and September.
• All travelers who engage in hiking, camping, or similar outdoor activities in rural wooded regions of endemic areas should take measures to prevent tick bites. Tick-bite prevention measures include applying a DEET-containing repellent to exposed skin and permethrin spray or solution to clothing and gear.
• A single 200-mg dose of doxycycline is effective in preventing Lyme disease if taken within 72 hours of being bitten by an infected tick. (Reference:

Other Diseases/Hazards: E. coli gastroenteritis (six cases of gastroenteritis caused by E coli O7:H157 were reported from a tourist area in Enniscrone. It is not known if any of these cases resulted in hemolytic uremic syndrome)
• Hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (no cases currently reported although virus appears to be circulating in the rodent population of Ireland)
• Leptospirosis (acquired through contact with water polluted by infective animal urine; travelers at risk are swimmers, rafters, and others engaging in water sports; clusters of cases of leptospirosis were reported among canoeist on the River Liffey in 2001 1nd 2004)
• Measles and mumps
• Q fever (rare cases in humans)
• Trichinosis (two Polish tourists became infected in 2007 from contaminated sausage purchased in Dublin).

Rabies: Ireland is reported to be rabies-free. All unprovoked dog or wild animal bites, however, should be medically evaluated for possible post-exposure treatment.

Travelers' Diarrhea: Low risk. However, an outbreak of cryptosporidiosis was reported from Galway in March 2007, due to contamination of the municipal water supply. As of May 2007, over 180 cases had been reported.
• Thirty confirmed cases of salmonellosis were reported in July 2007, apparently from a contaminated food product sold in a retail outlet in the Tralee and north Kerry region.
• In line with many western countries, Campylobacter is the most common cause of laboratory confirmed bacterial gastrointestinal disease in both the Republic of Ireland (ROI) and Northern Ireland (NI). Between 1999 and 2006 over 20,000 laboratory-confirmed cases were reported. Read more:
• A quinolone antibiotic, or azithromycin, combined with loperamide, is recommended for the treatment of acute diarrhea. Diarrhea not responding to antibiotic treatment may be due to a parasitic disease such as giardiasis or cryptosporidiosis.

Tuberculosis (TB): Ireland has reported its first case of extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB). XDR-TB is an emerging global threat. Between 2002 and 2007 sixteen countries in the European Union (EU) reported at least one case of XDR-TB. The infection is characterised by alarming mortality rates in both HIV and non-HIV populations. XDR-TB is defined as resistance to isoniazid, rifampicin, any flouroquinolone and any one of amikacin, capreomycin or kanamycin. In these circumstances therapeutic options are further restricted because of resistance to both first and second line agents. Consequently the XDR-TB treatment regimen often consists of older drugs (i.e. serine analogues, thioamides) that are predominantly bacteriostatic rather than bactericidal.
Read more: