The picture above is a tree in Dublin, Ireland. Spectacular isn’t it? Picture yourself fulfilling your life-long dream, hearing Irish music, eating in a first class European restaurant while you sip on a pint of Guinness on Christmas Eave.
Would you like to spend Christmas in Ireland? If warmer drier weather is more your taste, how about starting a Christmas Club at your local bank to pay for your travel. Here are some other tips to help make your dream a reality.
1. Have a plan and immerse yourself in Irish things all year or the next 2 years. Read Irish blogs, Irish books, buy an Irish map and get acquainted with the names of the counties. When someone asks you what you want for Christmas ask for a Frommer’s Travel Ireland book.
2. Figure out what things cost. See my post How to Travel Like a Spoiled American. and make a budget. Tip #1 If you have a large sum of money coming, say from a bonus or tax refund, use that for your flights or just add the lump sum to your Ireland fund.
3. Check out flights from the year before to see what costs were and then decide what time you will travel. Begin watching flight prices from as many different airfare sites as possible and a few months before you travel, book your flights when you notice the fairs dropping, usually a few months in advance.
4. Quit Smoking. You hear me right! Quit smoking. Not only does it make sense but the money you spent on cigarettes last year could have paid for two plane tickets!!
5. Watch movies set in Ireland and visualize yourself there. Do the same when you get back and you’ll be going for a second trip if you like.
6. Stop eating out at work. Figure out how much money you spend a month, a year, for all those lunches you eat out at work and pop that into your Ireland fund.
7. Share this post and get a friend on board who would like to join you on your trip.
8. Share this on twitter.
10. Tip. The best way to see Ireland is in your own car but book your car early and from the country you live in. If you wait until you arrive in the airport they will most likely not be available. Automatic transmissions are dear so book that in advance and check prices from several sites for the best deal.
11. If one year is just not enough time to save , plan a 2 or 3 year Christmas Club and save accordingly. You will only have to save half or one third the money from each paycheck.
12. In Northern Ireland they use the British Pound but in the Republic, (yep, they are 2 different countries) they use the Euro which you may find confusing because most of it is in coinage. Go to the bank and order whatever money you will be using, not a lot. Just enough to get a feel for it and become familiar. I found Irish pennies to be adorable!
13, Just go! No matter what. Tell yourself you are going unless you are on your deathbed. Whatever we tell our brains, we usually make happen.
14. Come back and write me a note about your experience. my email is: celticthoughts.com or better yet, write me ahead of time and I’ll point you toward the right people who can give you advice, if I don’t know the question. Besides my best friend lives in Cork and she knows everything She writes a blog called R U In Ireland..
15. If this helps you with your dreams, please RT. or leave a comment.
My point in all this, is you don’t want to waist a single moment of your trip to Ireland so not only is it important to save for the trip but its doubly important to do your homework . You don’t want regrets about anything you may have missed after you’ve returned home. I believe this to be true with every trip I take and I never ever take long generic bus tours, where you only go to the very touristy sites on your tour guides list. Decide what you like to see instead. For more saving tips on your next Irish trip click here and if you’d like a book on the long positive history of Ireland check this out too !