Please sign in to post.

Driving in Ireland


My wife and I are planning on driving from Dublin to Galway, then from Galway to Dingle (with a visit to the cliffs on moher on the way) and then end out travels in Cork and fly back to the UK. I know that can be allot of driving, but my wife and I are ok with that(we drove from Portland the San Fran and back a few months back for the weekend) I was looking at rentals and see I can get a cheap car that is a Punto, which I think will work for me. My concern is, how much is the extra coverage for insurance (europcar is likely the one we will use unless I hear of a better place) Does anyone have any other tips for driving there?

Posted by
190 posts

I drove in Ireland 4 years ago, renting a car, and will be doing the same this Jun/Jul. I use the Hertz link on the site. I get a good rate that is all inclusive(all necessary insurance)and a good-sized car, and you don't need to be flying Ryanair to do this.

Always drive a small car in Ireland!!!! But you will still need some space; I think a Punto might be too small. I rent the next to the smallest size, which is really small for American standards but just right in Ireland.

One good rule of thumb is to figure 30 miles per hour for travel distance/time - really! My Irish friends told me to plan on a solid 5 hours from Dublin airport to Limavady (No. Ire.). I hope you have a great trip!

Posted by
484 posts

If you can avoid driving in Dublin city center do so. It is better to pick your car up at the airport and then go on to Galway.
How long are you planning on spending on your trip? It will take about three hours from Dublin to Galway and probably almost five to Dingle. If you take the ferry across the River Shannon it will save you some time.
Also take the extra (super cdw) insurance. You might try Auto Europe for car rental. I have used them twice and been very pleased. AA roadwatch( give you a lot of information.

Posted by
484 posts

Also check with your local insurance agent and see if he has a policy rider that will cover you in Ireland.The additional insurance in Ireland can cost as much as 20 Euros a day.

Posted by
12 posts

Thanks for the tips, I will check with the insurance. My trip will only be 5 days in Ireland, we are doing the whole "backpack Europe" thing. I will look into the different size cars, but a Punto it may be... I have driven worse :) I hope to do the Galway to Moher to Dingle in one (long) day. I really love the open road drives, and I hear the countryside it beautiful. I will definitely get the extra insurance, can't be too bad... and I would likely hit something anyways. Now just hope that I can find my way...


Posted by
410 posts

We just rented a Fiat Punto in Spain for 2 weeks and I would very very strongly suggest you should not get a bigger car in Ireland. Some of the roads are very narrow - we had (what we would have considered) a small Puegot a couple of years ago and we wishing we had something even smaller. And the Irish are mad drivers. We also always use Europcar but sure others are fine too.

Posted by
8700 posts

A detailed map is essential for driving in Ireland. I like the Michelin Ireland map (available at If you want something even more detailed, get the Ordnance Survey maps. Do a Google search to find sources for buying them. However, getting lost in Ireland means you'll have a good chance of coming across another delightfully beautiful scene. Enjoy it!