Jun 19, 2011

Cost of Living in Ireland Compared to US and UK

Many people worry that when moving to Ireland that the cost of living will be expensive compared to other countries. Ireland has a reputation for high living costs - but is that true?

See some more figures on weekly household budgets in Ireland -

See some actual figures on the average household spending in Ireland on things like food , fuel , insurance, medical care etc  here......  Cost of Living in Ireland

The OECD  do regular comparisons of the cost of living in different countries . Their comparison uses a method called Purchasing Power Standard (PPS), which equalises the purchasing power of different national currencies and thus allows meaningful comparison.

The figures are based on an initial survey of prices from 2008 - which is then adjusted every month for country inflation and exchange rates.

The April 2011 figures showed that only these countries all had a higher cost of Living than Ireland : Switzerland 31% , Norway 23% , Denmark 19% , Australia 16%, Sweden 2%, Japan 1% and Finland 1%

Some of the countries that had lower prices than Ireland were :

Canada (-5%) ; New Zealand (-11%) ; UK (-12%) ; USA (-31%) , Poland
(-48%) , Turkey (-51%)

Of course - we all know that money isn't everything and you can be living in a place with a low cost of living and be miserable. What good is a cheap groceries if you live in fear of crime or you have poor access to healthcare. Another thing to consider is the income levels in a country.

The OECD also provided data on "real" minimum wage rates  - which  are the statutory minimum
wages which are then deflated by national Consumer Price Indices (CPI) and  converted into US dollars

Ireland came out with a min wage figure of $11.15 an hour -  with only France ($11.86) and Luxembourg ($12.47) having higher figures.

The US had a real min wage of $5.59 just 50% of the figure for Ireland.
The UK came out at $9.40 which works out as 84% of the Irish  minimum wage

In March 2010 a comparison of the cost of living in 214 major cities across the world was carried out by a company called Mercer . They looked at the cost of over 200 items including housing, transport, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment.
They used New York as the base city for the index (All currencies were converted to dollars).

Dublin in Ireland ranked 42nd in the most expensive cities in the world.
Dublin came out cheaper in the cost of living index than 41 other citeis including London , Paris (both ranked 17) , Rome (26) , Amsterdam (35)Tokyo (2), Moscow (4), Geneva (5) and Zurich (8) ,Hong Kong (8),Copenhagen Beijing (16), New York (27) , Sydney (24) , Melbourne (33)

See some more figures on weekly household budgets in Ireland -

See some actual figures on the average household spending in Ireland on things like food , fuel , insurance, medical care etc  here......  Cost of Living in Ireland

Ireland 5th in Human Development Index

We must have might have missed this UN Index of Human Development - from November 2010 in which Ireland came out 5th out of 169 countries .

Here are the top 20 countries in the UN Human Development  Index 2010

1. Norway
    New Zealand
    United States
   Korea (Republic of)

United Kingdom came 26th

The HDI represents a push for a broader definition of well-being and provides a composite measure of three basic dimensions of human development: health, education and income.
Between 1980 and 2010 Ireland's HDI rose by 0.7% annually from 0.720 to 0.895 in 2010 -  which gives the country a rank of 5 out of 169 countries with comparable data.
The HDI of OECD as a region increased from 0.723 in 1980 to 0.853 in 2010 today, placing Ireland above the regional average.

Ireland ranked as follows in the different categories:
Education -  4th
Health 18th
Income 25th

Full Data

Moving to Ireland - Facebook Status

Users of Facebook might have  noticed an increase in people setting their status as Moving to Ireland.
Now - it would be great if Ireland had become that popular - but for most people it is just a coded message that apparently means they are Single and Available.

We are not sure why Ireland was chosen to match this relationship status - but it could have been worse.... Moving to Wales means " I'm not bothered anymore"

Other Moving to "codes"

I’m moving to Liverpool — Seeing someone
I’m moving to Wales — Not bothered anymore
I’m moving to Paris — Taken
I’m moving to Scotland — It’s complicated
I’m being deported — I’m a lesbian
Immigration are outside my house — I’ve given up on love

Jun 16, 2011

Non EU Parents of Irish Born children now allowed to Live in Ireland

Ireland’s practice of refusing to give some parents of Irish children permission to live and work in this country must now end.

On 8 March 2011 the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled ( Zambrano Case) that an EU member state may not refuse the non-EU parents of a dependent child who is a citizen of, and resident in, an EU member state the right to live and work in that member state.

The Irish Department of Justice and Equality is reviewing the cases of non-EEA parents of Irish citizen minor children which may meet the criteria specified in the Zambrano case. If they meet the Zambrano criteria, the non-EEA parents may be given permission to live and work in Ireland without the requirement for an employment permit or business permission.

Non-EEA nationals with a stamp 2 or stamp 3 permission to remain in Ireland who think they meet the criteria specified in the Zambrano case can apply at their local Garda registration office. They should bring documents such as birth certificates and proof of residency with them. If they meet the criteria, their immigration status may be changed to a stamp 4 permission which will allow them to live and work in Ireland without the need for an employment permit. If the immigration officer refuses to change their status to a stamp 4, the non-EEA national should write to the Repatriation Division of the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service as described below.

A non-EEA national who does not have a current permission to remain in Ireland and who wishes to request a review of their case under the terms of the Zambrano judgement should write to the Repatriation Division, Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service, Department of Justice and Equality, 13-14 Burgh Quay, Dublin 2 and include the following documents:

A colour copy of the bio-data page of the Irish citizen child’s passport (the page with personal details and photo)

· The Irish citizen child’s original birth certificate – a copy is not acceptable.

· A colour copy of the bio-data page of the applicant’s own passport.

· Two colour passport-sized photographs, signed on the back by the applicant.

· A copy of the applicant’s current GNIB certificate of registration (if applicable)

· Documentary evidence that the Irish citizen child is living in the State.

· Proof of the applicant’s address and residence in Ireland (e.g. current utility bills etc).

· Documentary evidence of the role the applicant is playing in his/her child’s life (e.g. letters from schools, crèches, etc).

· Any other information that the applicant considers relevant to his/her case.

In addition, an applicant must provide answers to the following questions:

· Has he/she ever been convicted of a criminal offence in the State or abroad? If so, he/she must provide specific details.

· Are there any charges pending against him/her in the State or abroad? If so, he/she must provide details.

In some cases, DNA evidence of a biological link to the Irish citizen child or children may also be required. Once a decision has been made, that decision and the consequences of the decision will be notified in writing to the persons concerned.

Parents of Irish citizen children who were previously removed from the State by deportation order, and who wish to now re-enter the State to reside with their Irish citizen child or children, may now seek a revocation of that deportation order. Those subject to deportation orders should apply in writing to the Repatriation Division of INIS as set out above, specifying their desire to have the deportation order lifted to enable them to re-enter the State. Those parents of Irish citizen children who reside outside of Ireland but were never deported from the State now have the option of entering the State to reside and work. If they are visa required, they must apply online for a visa

1,057 cases have been identified where the ruling may apply.
For some, this means a parent who has been deported could be repatriated to Ireland to be reunited with their family. Of this figure, 135 are before the courts challenging existing deportation orders.

Jun 11, 2011

American Food Brands in Ireland

For the many Americans living in Ireland - one of the things that you might miss is some of those American foods and sweets ( candy). Now Amazon UK have started shipping groceries to Ireland with free delivery on orders over £25. They sell quite a few well known American brands such as  Koolaid, Kraft Macaroni Cheese , Libbys Pumpkin Pie Filling  , Willie Wonka , Ranch Dressing , Lucky Charms , Jack Daniels BBQ sauce and more...
Check out all the Groceries at Amazon Here.

NB - make sure the items are shown as "sold by Amazon" - otherwise it is unlikely to be delivered to Ireland.

Of course - Amazon sell thousands of other products too - books, cameras , ipods, dvds , computers - all priced in sterling and free delivery in Ireland available on orders over £25. See More at Amazon