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Cash and ATMs in Ireland: Fees, limits, exchange & all you need for your travel

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Ireland, a land of lush greenery, ancient castles, and lively culture, offers a warm welcome to travelers seeking the charm of the Emerald Isle. From the rugged cliffs of Moher and the scenic Ring of Kerry to the historic streets of Dublin and the traditional music of Galway, Ireland is a treasure trove of experiences. Navigating this enchanting country is made easier with a good understanding of the local currency, cash and ATMs in Ireland, and payment options. This guide will provide you with the financial insights needed to explore Ireland’s stunning landscapes and rich heritage with ease and confidence, immersing yourself in the captivating spirit of the Irish.

Cash or card?

Cards are a breeze in the city, with 70-80% of buys being a quick cashless transaction. But in rural spots, expect to handle some cash.

Cash for:

Local markets and bazaars
Tips and gratuities in many places
Street food vendors
Public buses
Small purchases

Card for:

Online bookings for hotels, flights, and tours
Fancy sit-down restaurants
Professional pre-paid taxi booking services (such as Uber, Lyft, etc.)
Food from local restaurants, even some sit-down restaurants
Spas
Good looking coffee shops
Many tour operators
Many hostels and budget hotels
Entry fees for major tourist attractions and theme parks
Tailoring services
Expensive tour operators
Car rentals
Street shopping
Upmarket hotels
Local trains
Local taxis
Shopping in malls and branded stores

So where to get cash in Ireland?

There are 3 ways to get the cash in Ireland. They are:

ATMs, or
Currency exchange
Money Transfer & local pick-up

Find ATMs in Ireland

Ireland’s ATM network, with more than 3,000 machines, ensures easy cash withdrawal in urban areas nad one each in mid-sized towns. Please note – Ireland has 2 main cities – Dublin and Cork and all other areas are much smaller. So, in the countryside and islands, it’ll be hard to find them. Typically, ATMs are placed at airports, town centers, main high streets, and shopping areas.

Popular banks with ATMs

The most popular ATMs in Ireland are:

Bank of Ireland
AIB
Permanent TSB
EBS

There are other banks with ATMs that also accept international debit and credit cards.

Some international banks also have their ATMs in Ireland, namely:

Royal Bank of Scotland
Barclays
HSBC
Nationwide

Global ATM alliance: Global ATM Alliance is a partnership among many banks in the world to allow its customers to withdraw cash from all partner banks abroad without any ATM fee. Many banks in the US, UK, Europe, Australia, and Latin America are part of the Global ATM Alliance, including Bank of America, Barclays, Deutsche Bank, and others. BUT, there is no local bank in Ireland part of this network. So don’t rely on this.

Where to find currency exchanges?

In Ireland, you can exchange cash at:

Authorised currency exchange centres: Located in tourist areas, brands like No 1 Currency Exchange, ICE Ireland, Eurochange, and Ria Money Transfer are popular, but local places are equally good. Mainly found in cities like Dublin and Cork.
Banks: Convert your currency to Euro at bank branches, especially for currencies like US dollars, Pounds, Japanese Yen, Thai Baht, and Singapore dollars. A commission of 0.5% to 2% per transaction is standard.
Hotels and airports: Both offer currency exchange services, but rates may not be favorable. Some larger hotels may have rates similar to banks.
Tips:

Avoid exchanging at airports due to poor rates.
Stay away from the black market to avoid scams.
Use new notes for better rates or lower fees.
For US dollars, larger bills typically receive higher rates.

Accepted currencies:
Ireland mainly accepts its local currency Euros (EUR or €). Note denominations are € 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500. Other currencies are not usually accepted.
US Dollar: Not accepted
Pound: Not accepted

Know the ATMs in Ireland

Foreign debit and credit cards usage:

Indeed, Ireland’s ATMs handle foreign cards very efficiently.

Types of cards at ATMs

ATMs in Ireland will mainly accept Visa, Mastercard, Cirrus, Plus, Maestro and Amex. Don’t expect ATMs to to accept Diners, Discover, JCB and UnionPay and RuPay cards.

Types of cards to swipe

Visa and Mastercard reign supreme for swiping, with Amex and other card types trailing behind in terms of acceptance at venues.

Opening hours

The availability of ATMs is quite reliable, offering 24/7 service. Standalone ATMs ensure you have access any time, in contrast to bank-located ATMs, which may be bound to traditional bank hours.

Workings and functionalities of the ATMs

Ireland’s ATMs feature a modern design and functionality, comparable to what you’d experience in the US or Europe. It’s important to note that some ATMs might take your card inside, so remember to collect it after your cash withdrawal.

ATM names

Word ATM is widely used

PIN type

ATMs in Ireland primarily accept 4-digit PINs. Some ATMs may accept longer PINs, but 4 digits are standard.

Also, many merchants used old machines which require a magnetic stripe on the card and not just a chip-and-pin card.

Language options

ATMs in Ireland come with English, and occasionally Irish. If you’re not conversant with these, you can use Google Translate’s camera translation for live assistance, keeping in mind that it may not always be entirely accurate.

Know the foreign exchanges in Ireland

Foreign debit and credit cards usage:

Currency exchanges prefer hard cash for exchange. Visa is accepted at many places, mastercard next. Please be mindful of the fees you will pay if you use your card at a currency exchange.

Opening hours

Currency exchanges usually opt for cash over card payments. Visa is accepted at numerous locations, with Mastercard following. Pay attention to the fees for card transactions.

Languages to interact in

Staff at currency exchanges in Ireland can usually interact in English.

Exchange names

Look for signs like ‘Currency Exchange’, ‘Forex’, or ‘Money Exchange’ when you need to exchange currency.

ATM withdrawal limit and ATM Fees

Withdrawal limit: ATMs in Ireland typically do not restrict the amount of withdrawal per transaction. Some banks restrict it to upto €650 per day.

ATM fees: Here’s the good news! In Ireland, bank ATMs do not charge foreign card holders any ATM Fees. Be sure to decline conversion at the ATM and also only use standalone bank ATMs. ATMs inside supermarkets, ATMs of independent operators will charge fees.

Ways to avoid high fees

Use fee-free ATMs in the country.
Use the ATM Fee Saver app to find fee-free or low-fee ATMs.
Opt for “Decline Conversion” or “Without Conversion” during ATM transactions.
Consider getting fee-free cards from your home country.
For more in-depth insights and alternative methods, check out our detailed article, Withdrawing cash abroad? 9 best ways to save foreign ATM fees.
Avoid no-fee exchange offices at all costs to get cash in Ireland – If they say no fee, which means they account for their fee in the exchange rate. Nothing is ever free in currency exchanges
Avoid using credit and debit cards for direct transactions

Ways to find fee-free ATMs in Ireland

Locate ATMs without fees in Ireland, along with currency exchange and money transfer facilities, through the ATM Fee Saver mobile and web app. The app provides information on fees for foreign cardholders at Irelandese ATMs and their withdrawal limits. Additionally, you can use its calculator to calculate the precise fees for your withdrawals. The app also guides you to your selected ATM with navigation and covers details for 50 countries, including Ireland.

Money and safety

Carrying cash

Mugging, threats, or robberies are rare in Ireland, making it generally safe to carry cash while traveling. However, take these precautions:

Avoid withdrawing large amounts in busy areas.
Don’t carry too much cash during long journeys or walks through deserted streets.
Withdraw cash close to when you need it from a nearby ATM with low or no fees.
Additionally, follow these safety tips:

Distribute your cash across different wallets or pockets.
Use money belts or security pouches for storing cash securely.
Avoid flaunting your cash.
Keep your wallet or bag with you at all times, especially when dining alone.
Consider placing your wallet in your front pocket.
In crowded or tourist areas, wear your backpack in front and keep your belongings close, using security locks if possible.

Safety at ATMs in Ireland & currency exchanges too

Typically, ATMs in Ireland are equipped with security features like cameras and guards, maintaining low crime rates in their vicinity. For enhanced safety, prioritize using ATMs located within bank branches as they tend to be more secure and less prone to skimming attacks. It’s crucial to regularly monitor your card transactions via your bank’s mobile app or online platform, reporting any unauthorized activities promptly. Exercise caution when using public Wi-Fi for banking or credit card transactions by utilizing a Virtual Private Network (VPN) for added security. Always keep your credit card within sight during transactions to prevent it from being taken out of view by merchants. Carrying a backup credit card is a wise practice while traveling, providing an alternative in case of any issues with your primary card. Adhering to these safety measures is especially important when using ATMs abroad, including in Ireland.

For more detailed information, we recommend reading our articles: Top 8 Things to Avoid While Travelling Abroad: ATM Series and Top 8 Things Not to Do When Travelling Abroad: ATM Series.

Lastly, ensure that you only engage in currency exchanges at authorized and registered establishments.

FAQs

Fee-free ATMs and possible to withdraw cash free of cost?

Yes, bank ATMs in Ireland do not charge any fees to foreign card holders. They are popular and have many ATMs across the country. Use ATM Fee Saver to find those free ATMs. Of course, there might be fees from your bank and also from the ATM if you “accept conversion” offered by that ATM. So hit “Decline Conversion” or “Without Conversion” when the ATM offers you that option, and you will have no extra fees, from the ATM’s side.

Foreign cards from US, UK, India, China, Europe accepted?

Absolutely yes! You can usually use cards from the US, UK, Europe, Australia, and other countries at ATMs in Ireland

Bitcoin ATMs: Yes, there are about 15 Bitcoin ATMs in Ireland.

Foreign banks’s presence in Ireland

Bank of America: None
Citbank: Nope
Barclays: Nope.
HSBC: No
Standard Chartered: None

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