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Have you ever thought about making the commitment of actually moving to Ireland? Hear from Brian Casey – Briain Ó Casathaigh – who moved to Ireland in 2013. His first ever trip to Ireland was only during the year before that. They sold just about everything, and made the leap.
What you’ll hear
- What steps to take to contact those who have already moved to Ireland before you
- How to learn Irish before and after getting to Ireland
- The pay-off for learning to speak Irish: a way of embracing your Irish heritage
Mentioned in the show
- Culture Shock! Ireland book on Amazon.com
- Felicity Hayes McCoy’s book The House on an Irish Hillside on Amazon. Listen to our previous interview with Felicity on the Bitesize Irish Gaelic Podcast.
- Our new book The Irish Language: Your Key to Gaelic Ireland
- Travel places: Clonmacnoise, the Cliffs of Moher, and Castlebar
- St. Patrick’s Day: take our free Bitesize lesson
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The show comes out each fortnight on Thursdays at 8am EST. Thanks for listening. We’d love to hear from you about the episode. Just leave a comment below.
35 thoughts on “Ever considered moving to Ireland? (Podcast 015)”
Dublin girl here, living in Melbourne but hopefully going home in a few years. I found your story very inspiring and you sound like a lovely person. I do hope you, your wife and son get back to Ireland when you can! Very best wishes,
Best of luck with your move home, Dani!
I moved home to Ireland after 7 years in Perth, it’s hard but it’s worth it I promise!
Go n-éirí an t-ádh leat,
It’s four years since you recorded this interview but it’s as appreciated now as obviously these comments show it was then. Thank you for your time Brian, and Eoin, thank you for this podcast series!
Thank you for commenting and your appreciation.
We are glad to hear that you are enjoying the podcast 🙂
Thanks so much for the information you provided in this interview! I am super interested in your story about coming on with the church – I have been in contact with a small local church in Ireland as well. How did you get connected with them? I would love to hear more about your story!
My email is [email protected] – I’d love to chat more in-depth!
Thanks so much,
I also want to thank you, so very much, for the podcast and all your other endeavors! Great work! 🙂 One super-cool, and admittedly completely unforeseen, side-effect to listening to your show has been helping me be a more active listener. You are one of the best interviewers I have ever heard (you remind me of an old boss I had in D.C. That had been interviewing people professionally for 25 years….he was a master!). I started realizing how sincerely you participate in the conversation and realized that asking questions in regular everyday conversation is a powerful tool to becoming a stronger, more engaged listener. It goes beyond just being quiet Wile someone else talks. What a great life lesson to learn!
Thanks for adding the comments Sarah. Oh, I’m far from a professional interviewer! I do enjoy having conversations with our guests, so I guess that helps, since I always want to find out more from them.
For those looking for some administrative information on moving to Ireland and working there, this Citizen’s Information is a fantastic resource:
And of course you could read that in Irish too 😉
Dia Dhuit Eoin, agus go raibh maith agat to Brian!
that was an inspirational podcast and it made me that much more determined to get off my duff and visit Ireland soon, I too just need to make a commitment to do just that. Two of my older sisters have visited there at different times in the 80’s and 90’s one visited whilst being stationed in London in the U.S. Navy the other went there with her husband and two girls and met up with and I believed stayed a bit with a cousin of ours in Dublin. I struggle at times to progress with learning the language but it is always a positive struggle and deep down I feel it brings me closer to my Irish heritage. St. Patrick’s Day was fun here in Central Florida as we got some much needed rain, which it did all day long. It was great to hear about Brian’s challenge to finally realize his moving “back home” as it were and I will make it a point to catch more of these podcasts.
Great job guys! Slan go foill!
Glad to hear it’s a positive struggle 😉 Bite by bite, is our approach.
Funny to hear about your rain for St. Patrick’s Day. Thanks for leaving a comment.
Oh and that is also a concern of mine … finding work. By trade I am a biochemist but could work any chemistry or biology positions. I’m also good with hospitality, office, or admin positions and many other everyday jobs. I suppose when it came to it, contacting my family would be my first route to figuring out what to do for income. I do know that finding laboratory jobs is much easier once I’m in Ireland rather than searching and applying for them here in California. But I also know that it is harder as an immigrant to get employed since the Irish government require the employer to show due diligence to trying to find an Irish native to fill the position first.
Cork certainly has the concentration of pharmaceutical work in Ireland.
About permits and the like, this is a great resource:
This was awesome! The month I spent in Ireland was outstanding in 2006. I would have stayed if I could have. I really didn’t want to leave the family that I had found and stayed with. It’s been nearly ten years and every year that goes by I dream of living either in Arigna, Roscommon with my family or on an Aran island. I’ve researched living in both places and immersed myself in as much culture as I possibly can over the internet and networking. All it does is solidify further in my mind that I want to go and live in Ireland permanently. I believe I can get my Irish passport as Irish decent, but haven’t started that process yet. At the present moment everything depends on money, and I still need to finish my degree at my university here before I will even consider moving away or all will be for naught. I’m still learning my Irish but where I live now I have little to no one to regularly talk to. My biggest caveat really is learning how to write and type quickly (for internet friends with Irish}. I guess that’s the problem with learning any new language, the talking is always easiest to master first. I’d love to know how long Briain has lived in Ireland and how difficult it is to renew his (agus a chlann) visa. Is it always the same visa or has he found his family have to switch up visa types? Some of my friends whom live around the world have had to do that to stay in their country of choice. I’d also like to know what has been the hardest/most interesting to get used to regarding: space of living quarters (I know living areas tend to be smaller in Ireland than in the States), appliances (I noted there were limited types in the houses I stayed in while in Ireland compared to the average American home – like no automatic dishwasher), and food. I am a huge gourmet foodie from California and I know it would depend on what I could grow in Ireland or where I lived for availability of food products. Other than getting my degree finalized not much else is stopping me from moving out of this country, especially if I can get Irish passport soon. Thanks Eoin and Briain!
Good call on keeping working on your college degree for now.
Brian Casey’s been in Ireland for about 6 months now, if memory serves me right. He has a 3-year visa, so he has yet to see what will happen when that visa expires.
It would be interesting to hear Brian’s take on living quarters and appliances. It depends what you pay for, I suppose. You might call it “cozy”, if a bit small 🙂
Dia dhuit, a Marlene!
I’m envious that you might be able to obtain a passport from your Irish descent. I’m too far removed from my Caseys that came over during the Famine, so my best chance is to live here for five years (no complaints there!)and then apply for citizenship.
While there are many different types of visas, ours is a three-year visa granted to those who’ve been invited—by an established church in Ireland—to serve on the church staff. When the three years are up, we would then need a letter of recommendation from our pastor requesting we remain to help with the work. Provided everything else is in order (financial income, health insurance, etc.) we can renew the visa for another year, and annually thereafter.
As I mentioned in the podcast, I never knew such a visa existed until we began searching for ways to stay in Ireland. There are certainly other visas (student, work, etc.), and it’s a matter of finding the one that best suits your needs.
As for housing, we didn’t run into a lot of problems there. It really depends on what you’re looking for. Websites such as http://www.daft.ie/ clearly show tiny houses/cottages as well as huge ones! Our temporary cottage was smaller than what we were used to, but still had an automatic dishwasher :).
Many things you simply “learn as you go.” There are foods, spices, etc. that are common in any market in the states that you can’t find everywhere here. No worries though, as eventually you get to know the town and the people, and sooner or later someone will say, “Oh, you can find that over at Tesco (or Lidl, Aldi, Super Saver, Health Food store, etc.)!” You can generally find whatever you need here, although you may have to do a bit of searching!
I hope these suggestions help, Marlene, and I wish you the best of luck as you find your way over here.
Would love to chat with you via email. My husband and I are currently planning to move to Ireland in the next couple of years and also looking to get on staff at a local church. Would love to chat with you. I realize it’s been many years since this podcast. So I may not be able to find you here. I just accidentally found this podcast and YouTube channel and listening as much as I can to catch up. It’s wonderful. I wish I would have found it sooner. However just found your specific episode and would love to chat with you if possible. If someone reads this and can get Brian in contact with me that would be great. Thanks so much.
Heather and David
I will forward your comment to Brian. Eoin.
Dia dhuit, a Heather,
I apologize for the extremely slow response to your post. It’s been a crazy, hectic few months!
Let me start by saying I’m glad you liked the podcast! Living in Ireland is truly a wonderful experience! Sadly, due to the loss of a large job contract that comprised most of our income, we had to move back to the States at the end of October. (Yes, I’m still getting used to driving on the right, and I still occasionally get into my car on the wrong side!)
It was truly heartbreaking to leave Ireland, but we hope to get back after our son graduates from high school in 2022. The people,.the culture, the music, the language—I love it all, and I’d be happy to answer any questions you might have.
Is mise, le meas,
Briain ‘O Cathasaigh
(Brian Casey – [email protected])
Thank you for this podcast. I have been seriously considering moving to Ireland for about a year now. But I am still in school so I have to wait at least till I am done with school. I am also an actor, which makes working from home quite impossible for me. Do you have any advice on how to find work in Ireland when moving, especially for artists and actors like myself?
Hi Hephy – definitely finish your schooling, of course. After that, I think you would need to target specific acting organizations, including theatres and the like. Perhaps the way to approach it is to seek something that would last a month or two, and then see after that where it takes you.
Thank you so much for this podcast episode. I am currently trying to move to Ireland myself and I found Brian’s comments very helpful. I was just in Ireland last week for an interview, but unfortunately did not get the job. I continue to look and apply, but have had very little interest in my applications. I would love to just pack up and move but but my concern is finding a place to live. I had the thought of just moving there and then trying to find work, but I’m concerned with housing and not being able to find a job. Any suggestions on inexpensive temporary housing? I’d hate to move to Dublin and then find a job in Cork in a few weeks time. I acquired my dual citizenship about 10 years ago and am legally able to work in Ireland. I REALLY want to live in Ireland, especially after my visit last week, which was my first.
Thanks again Eoin and Brian!
That’s awesome Brian! I’d love to hear more about your experiences, both with the finding work and your move to Ireland! The citizenship will definitely make it much easier!
Hi Brian, thanks for listening. Wow, great to see that you got an interview. It takes time.
For sure, I can understand how it could be difficult to secure a job while not being on-location.
The way I would narrow this down is to choose a city first, then target jobs in that city. You would want to review Dublin, Cork, Galway, Limerick and further afield, and Belfast if you’re interested in Northern Ireland.
After that, the next question is how to show up for a month or two without huge cost. Something like http://www.airbnb.com might secure you a place where the monthly rent gets you a place for a bit pricey rent. But then it’s only a temporary thing.
To Briain Ó Casathaigh,
Go raibh míle maith agat an oiread sin an!
You’ve given me such inspiration and information!!!
It is wonderful to listen to someone who has moved to Ireland. This has been a dream of mine for some 40 years (giving away my age). I’m 2nd generation American-Irish. I remember my grandfather’s stories. My childhood sounds a lot like yours except I had to listen to country western music also. I’m fortunate enough to be able to get Dual Citizenship through descent. I’m also involved with the Irish Immigration Center in Philadelphia, where I live. My only obstacles (small at that)is getting in touch with people in Ireland via the Internet & money. I have about a year to save as it will take that long to get my citizenship. I have no reservations about moving to Ireland. I’m in the final decades of my life & it’s where I want to retire. I’m an artist and I just want to spend my days painting. What a more beautiful place to do that. I’ve lived a very interesting life and picking up and moving to another country doesn’t phase me a bit. Ireland’s weather is close to Philadelphia’s weather. No problem. Well, again GRMA.
I loved the podcast! I am in a similar situation, really. I have Irish ancestry and have long dreamed of visiting, and eventually living in Ireland.
I am hoping to get to visit next year, but the moving seems so overwhelming that I don’t know where to start. Especially with finding an income. I am not fortunate enough to have an online income, and it seems jobs are hard to come by over there.
My dream would be to move to Ireland and eventually get citizenship, but I don’t know what my options are.
Until then I plan to keep learning the language, learning about the country, and picking up any useful tips I can. Hopefully a visit next year will bring me one step closer.
A visit seems like a good big milestone! You never know where you plans may lead you after experiencing Ireland. Eoin.
That’s the current plan! 🙂
If I had the money I had considered getting a student visa and taking language classes at a college. I don’t know if there is even a need for such a thing, but I’d love to work with the language some day, maybe even on a professional level. But that’s probably just me dreaming! Lol
Keep it up! Eoin.
Dia dhuit Eoin,
Thank you for this podcast. It was extremely informative!
Lucky for me I’m in the process of getting my dual citizenship, so that’s one obstacle out of the way. I also have an income another obstacle out! So it’s a matter of making some aquaintances with the natives and finances to get there. My cats are going to cost $4000.00 to bring with me. (no bringing them is not an option.
My language skills have been taking leaps and bounds and I find myself typing Irish words instead of English unconsciously.
I’m glad you got value out of this episode, speaking with Brian. Thanks to Brian for being so generous with his time and information.
Is there a video to accompany this podcast? Why does your guest refer to the Hunger, as opposed to the Genocide? Thank you.
Thanks for the feedback – there’s no video, as we’re concentrating on the audio medium with the podcast. Would you sit down to watch a video of the interviews?
Thanks for your comment. A video podcast would be interesting, right?