Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Money & Shopping in Ireland

EuropeIrelandMoney & Shopping in Ireland


Ireland utilizes the euro. This single currency is used by a number of European nations. In all nations, all euro banknotes and coins are legal tender.

One euro is split into 100 cents.

The euro’s official sign is €, and its ISO code is EUR. The cent does not have an official symbol.

  • Banknotes: In all nations, euro banknotes have the same design.
  • Normal coins: On one side, each eurozone country’s coin has a unique national design, while the other side has a basic shared design. Regardless of the design, coins may be used in any eurozone nation (e.g. a one-euro coin from Finland can be used in Portugal).
  • Commemorative two euro coins: The sole difference between them and regular two euro coins is their “national” side, and they circulate freely as legal currency. Each nation may make a limited number as part of its regular coin manufacturing, and “European” two euro coins are sometimes made to mark exceptional occasions (e.g. the anniversary of important treaties).
  • Other commemorative coins: Other commemorative coins (e.g., ten euros or more) are considerably rarer, feature completely unique designs, and often include significant quantities of gold, silver, or platinum. While they are legally legal currency at face value, their material or collector value is often considerably greater, and as a result, they are unlikely to be seen in circulation.

Stand-alone cash machines (ATMs) are widely accessible across the nation, and most establishments accept credit cards. Irish ATMs do not usually impose fees (but beware that your bank may charge a fee).

Because the UK pound sterling is the currency of Northern Ireland, it is customary to take UK pounds as payment along border regions, with change provided in Euro. Some businesses, particularly border gas stations, will offer you change in sterling if you ask for it. (Because gasoline is now usually cheaper in the south, many Northern motorists now fill up south of the border.)

Due to recent pricing disparities between the Irish Euro and the British Pound, a growing number of Irish consumers are crossing the border to buy products that are far cheaper in Northern Ireland than in the Republic. A November 2008 story in a Northern Newspaper showed how Christmas shopping in Derry and Belfast in the North may save you up to €350 compared to Letterkenny in Donegal.

The economic position was reversed just a few years ago, when the Celtic Tiger was still very much alive and thriving.


Throughout Ireland, ATMs are extensively accessible. It is doubtful that you would be unable to locate an ATM even in tiny communities. In contrast to the UK, many businesses and bars will have an ATM on site, and they will cost the same to use as’regular’ ATMs on the street. In-store ATMs, on the other hand, are somewhat more likely to run out of cash and become ‘Out of Service.’

Credit Cards

MasterCard, Maestro, and Visa are all widely accepted. American Express and Diners Club are also commonly accepted these days. The Discover card is seldom accepted, therefore it’s not a good idea to depend only on it. Most ATMs accept major credit cards and globally branded debit cards for cash withdrawals.

Ireland, like the rest of Europe, utilizes “chip and PIN” credit cards. Signature-only credit cards, such as those in use in the United States, should be accepted anywhere a chip and PIN card with the same brand logo is accepted. The personnel will have a portable device and will require you to place your card close to it and enter your PIN. Instead, they’ll swipe your card and ask for your signature on the paper receipt that comes out of it. Normally, this passes without a hitch, but some employees in regions with a small number of foreigners may be perplexed or believe the card cannot be accepted without a chip. Even if you think you’ll be able to pay with a credit card later, having cash on hand may help you avoid uncomfortable circumstances.


Tipping isn’t a common practice in Ireland. The basic regulations are the same as they are in the United Kingdom. It is not common to tip a percentage of the entire amount; nevertheless, a few tiny coins are frequently sufficient. In the Netherlands, like in the rest of Europe, it is customary to round up to the closest note (for example, paying €30 for a bill of €28).

Tipping is customary at restaurants of 10-15%, but for big parties or special events (weddings/anniversaries/conferences with banquets), tipping becomes a part of the entire event’s exuberance and may be much higher, even significant. Tipping is not required at bars or pubs, and in the unusual bar or ‘Superpub’ with restroom attendants, it is superfluous. For short citywide trips, cab fares are rounded up to the next euro, although this is more discretionary than in restaurants. When checking out of a hotel, a tip may be added to the bill, but some customers choose to pay specific waiters or room attendants personally or by leaving a little tip in the room.

The tip should always reflect pleasure with the quality of service received.

Tax Free Shopping

If you are a visitor from outside the EU, you may be eligible for a partial VAT refund (which currently stands at 23 percent .) Unlike several other nations, however, there is no uniform system through which a visitor may receive this reimbursement. The manner of reimbursement is entirely at the discretion of the merchant, therefore visitors should inquire about receiving a VAT refund before making a purchase.

Private (non-government) VAT refund agents are one method used by merchants that cater to visitors. The shopper gets a magnetic stripe card that records the amount of purchases and VAT paid each time a transaction is made, and then claims the VAT back at the airport, less the VAT refund agent’s fee, which is frequently very considerable. Because there are so many of these VAT refund agents, you may need to bring several cards and submit various claims at the airport. However, you should be aware that a VAT refund agent representative may not be present at the airport or particular terminal from where you will be leaving, or that the office may be closed at the time you leave. In such scenario, obtaining a refund may be more difficult since you’ll have to contact with a VAT refund representative in your home country.

If the shop does not participate in the VAT refund agent program, they may inform you that all you have to do is take the receipt to the airport and collect the refund at the airport’s VAT refund office. This, however, is wrong. Tourists do not get any VAT refunds from Irish Revenue. Tourists must get their receipts stamped by customs, either in Ireland or in their home country, and then submit these receipts as evidence of export straight to the Irish merchant, who is obliged to provide a VAT refund to the tourist. As an example, if you made ten distinct purchases at ten different merchants, you will need to file ten individual refund requests with each retailer. It’s worth noting, though, that some shops don’t participate in the program at all, so you may not be able to receive a VAT refund from them. If you want to get a VAT tourist refund on your purchases in Ireland, you need be cautious about where you buy and which return program they use, if any.

The paper Retail Export Scheme (Tax-Free Shopping for Tourists) contains further information about VAT tourist reimbursements.