How do I keep in touch with relatives and friends from Ireland? Find, in this article, an overview of the Irish telecommunications network.
Telecommunications, nowadays, are an essential part of an expatriation project. If you are moving to a foreign country, you will definitely want to keep in touch with your family and friends abroad. This should be quite easy if you are moving to Ireland as the country has a very developed telecommunications network which offers various services: land lines, mobile phones, internet, etc.
Good to know:
To date, Ireland has more than 5.5 million land line and mobile phone subscribers.
If you have decided to settle permanently in Ireland, you may consider subscribing to a land line. You just have to call at one of your service provider's branches with your identification documents, that is your identity card or passport, proof of address, etc. Your bank account number will be requested if you have a bank account in Ireland and if you choose to pay your phone bills by direct debit.
Good to know:
You will be eligible to discounts on local and international call rates on weekdays and during week-ends and public holidays from 6pm to 6am the next day. Rates usually vary from one phone service provider to another.
Making phone calls
To make international phone calls from Ireland, dial "00" followed by the country code (or city and region codes) and the phone number without the initial "0". Here are some examples:
England: 00 44 area or city code phone number
Switzerland: 00 41 area or city code city phone number
Italy: 00 39 area or city code city phone number
Spain: 00 34 area or city code city phone number
To make phone calls to Northern Ireland, however, you will have to dial the England's country code, that is 00 44, followed by 28, which is the area code, and the 8-digit phone number.
To get through the information service, call 11 from a cell phone or a land line and 118-500 from a phone booth.
Mobile phone is known to be the best means of communication in Ireland. But before traveling there, make sure you have unlocked your cell phone first. Otherwise, you will not be able to use it as Ireland has adopted the GSM network. But you can still buy a new mobile phone and a new sim card anywhere in the country.
Good to know:
Most European mobile networks have a partnership with Ireland in terms of telecommunications. Inquire with your local service provider before moving.
Buying an Irish sim card is however recommended to avoid extra charges. These are available in mobile phone and electronic shops, as well as at your phone service provider's branches. Upon purchase, you will receive a certain amount of credit which you can recharge by buying prepaid cards. You can purchase these in supermarkets and shops and at service stations and shops. Some service provider's also offer 'top-up' facilities on their website.
Note that different phone service providers offer various types of services and packages at attractive rates. Make sure to compare prices before choosing.
Phone booths can also be seen almost everywhere in the country. In general, these require coins or prepaid cards. Prepaid cards are available in 10, 20, 50 and 100 units in shops and at newsstands, post offices and oil stations.