Dublin: first steps for non-European students

Every day many new students arrive in Dublin to learn English and live the local culture. But for there to be no problems in this way, one must be attentive to the demands of immigration. The first barrier for non-English speakers is the language. The Irish have a very difficult accent to understand. Of course I can not generalize. Most students coming to Dublin already have accommodation. If you are not part of this group, another article already posted here may help you.

Before you even begin classes and enjoy the city’s cultural events, you need begin to understand about the documentation you require to live here. One is the Irish Residence Permit (IRP) or GNIB. This is your stay visa. It gives you the right to live in Ireland for eight months (6 months of study plus 2 months of vacation), depending on your type of visa (Stamp) this timeframe may vary. You must prove that you have at least €3,000 and you must bring all your documentation to the immigration service. They are: passport, letter of acceptance, health insurance and proof of address – which is usually already in the health insurance or you can get a letter from a friend where you will be staying. Do not forget that you have to show the ticket back to the country where you came from. In addition you must pay €300 for the visa. It can be renewed twice. A card will be sent to your address within 10 week days. IMPORTANT: Try to schedule a time before coming to Ireland. As the demand is great, many people do not get an appointment quickly.

PPS: Personal Public Service Number

The PPS is the reference number for access to social assistance benefits and public services such as a driver’s license required to register and work legally in the country. This document will give you the right to work up to 20 hours per week during your stay in Ireland. Just like GNIB, you’ll need to schedule a time.

The required documents are: passport, IRP or GNIB, proof of residence, letter from your employer and the printed schedule. On-site, you will receive a form to fill in with your basic information already provided during the scheduling. As soon as you have finished filling it out, inform and go to the booth indicated on your schedule. Within two weeks, this document will come to your house.

Working students pay taxes

If you’ve already got a job, great. Now it’s time to find out about the Revenue. This is the government agency responsible for receiving the taxes from every worker in Ireland (including exchange students). The PPS is indispensable for registering with the Revenue. To make the registration, you will need the PPS number, date of birth, contact number, email and address. In it, you will request a password, which will arrive in your home within five business days. With this password, you will be able to register your first job, online, on the Revenue website.

It’s time to open an account at the bank.

First of all, choose the bank of your choice and schedule a time (some schools have specific partner banks that they send the students to open the account). You should do this as soon as possible. On the scheduled day you need to bring the following documents: passport, proof of residence and School letter proving that you are a student. Your bank account will be active within 24 hours. The bank card and your password will arrive in your home, through correspondence between 5 and 7 week days. Ireland’s largest banks are the AIB, Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank.


  • Make a copy of all your documents and keep them at home.
  • Keep a copy of all your documents on your mobile
  • Reserve the €3000 you brought to spend after you have received the IRP / GNIB. DO NOT SPEND IT!
  • You can save this money by swapping bearer checks in the Post Office.

Enjoy your time in Dublin. And by the way, here you can learn more about why it is so difficult and easy to live in Dublin.

By Rodrigo Valadares

Rodrigo Valadares
Rodrigo Valadares

I am Rodrigo from Brazil. I have worked as a journalist there since 1999, always as a text editor and content on TV. I am 43 years old and now I am living in Dublin. I have discovered how fascinating it is to know and live others cultures since I arrived here.

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