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Get The Latest Travel News For Our Tours Of Ireland

Get the latest travel updates from Vagabond & Driftwood about our 2024 and 2025 tours of Ireland.

By Rob

Get yourself ready for Ireland by reading the latest travel updates and our most frequently asked questions (FAQs).

You'll also find info on visa requirements, packing tips and advice on budgeting.

Select the 'down arrow' or title to expand the answer to the any of the following FAQs.

✈️ Aer Lingus Work-To-Rule June 2024

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What Is Happening?

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A proposed industrial action by the IALPA pilots’ union is likely to affect some transatlantic Aer Lingus flights due to operate from Wednesday 26th June 2024 onwards.

Efforts are being made to avert the industrial action and avoid travel disruption.

Will My Flight Be Cancelled Due To The Aer Lingus Pilots’ Industrial Dispute?

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It is not yet known how many flights will be affected by the proposed industrial action. Current estimates are between 10% to 20%.

If you are booked to fly with Aer Lingus after Wednesday 26th June 2024, the airline will make direct contact with you about the status of your trip.

If I Am Delayed Can I Still Join My Tour?

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If you are delayed arriving to Ireland and would still like to join your tour, email our team at enquiries@vagabond.ie to see if we can help.

If My Aer Lingus Flight Is Cancelled, What Options Do I Have To Get Another One On The Same Date?

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Aer Lingus will provide advice to you regarding finding other flight options.

If you booked your trip through a travel agent, they may also be able to advise you.

If My Aer Lingus Flight Is Cancelled And I Can’t Reach Ireland, Can I Get A Refund For My Tour?

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If the departure date of your Vagabond or Driftwood tour is less than 60 days away, a full refund is not possible.

This is because Vagabond will have already incurred the accommodation costs for your tour. Please email enquiries@vagabond.ie for more information.

Can I Postpone My Tour And Re-Book For Another Date?

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If the departure date of your Vagabond or Driftwood tour is less than 60 days away, re-booking is not possible as we have already incurred the accommodation costs for your tour. Please email enquiries@vagabond.ie for more information.

If the departure date of your Vagabond or Driftwood tour is more than 60 days away, it may be possible to postpone your tour until another date in the future. Please email enquiries@vagabond.ie to check.

The ability to re-book is dependent on availability.

Please note, additional costs may be required when you re-book if the fee for the future tour is greater than your previously booked tour.

Will My Travel Insurance Cover The Cost Of The Tour?

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We strongly advise all of our guests to organise travel insurance in advance of their trip to Ireland.

Comprehensive travel insurance policies are likely to cover your losses in the event of flight cancellations.

Check with your travel insurer about this specific level of cover.

Where Can I Find More Information?

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The best place to check the latest travel updates is on the Aer Lingus website.

Please email enquiries@vagabond.ie with any queries related to your Vagabond or Driftwood tour booking.

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What Should I Pack?

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Travel light.

That's the one travel tip that we hear again and again from guests who have experienced our tours.

Your Ireland trip will run smoother if you pack these essentials.

👣 Footwear

Are you taking an active Vagabond Cultural Adventure?

Comfortable trainers/sneakers work fine for our hikes.

However, lightweight hiking boots are even better because they...

  • Are usually waterproof or water-resistant
  • Offer improved grip over steep and/or loose terrain
  • Support your ankles on uneven ground and when descending

There are no long walks or hikes on Driftwood Journeys of Discovery so you don't require specialised footwear.

However, comfort is the order of the day. But make sure you pack shoes suitable for light walking.

You'll enjoy lots of free time to stroll around cute little towns and take guided tours of sheep farms.

💡 TOP TIP: Make sure you wear-in your chosen footwear for at least a few days BEFORE you come on tour.

📱Phone

We highly recommend you bring a WiFi-enabled mobile phone with you to Ireland.

All of our hotels have free internet access so you can keep in touch with loved ones at home.

A phone will also come in very handy if you are delayed or need to contact a local number while you are here, for any reason.

If you do plan on bringing a phone, please share your number with us before the trip: enquiries@vagabond.ie

👚 Clothing

One of the things that makes Ireland so much fun is the exciting climate.

Sun. Wind. Rain shower.

Then, 5 minutes later, sun again...

Here are our tips for what clothes to pack for your tour:

  • 🧅 Pack Layers. We suggest packing flexible and lightweight layers (under a waterproof outer shell). Layers will allow you to quickly adapt to unexpected changes in weather or temperature.
  • 🪩 Think Casual: Formal wear is not required for dining and nightlight in Ireland. The dress code is casual at 99% of pubs, restaurants and venues.
  • 🧥 Waterproof Shell. Beat sudden rain showers and gusts of wind by packing a lightweight waterproof shell jacket. Make sure you buy from a reputable brand. You'll thank yourself later!
  • 🧢 Head First. You'll never regret packing a hat. Either a soft 'beanie' or a peaked baseball cap will come in handy at some point.
  • 👖 Trousers. Are you taking an active Vagabond Cultural Adventure? Lightweight waterproof or water-resistant trousers can be handy for longer hikes. Quick-dry walking trousers are another great option.
  • 🌤️ Protect Your Eyes & Skin. Pack sunglasses/shades and protective sun cream. Yes, it can get sunny in Ireland! What's more, when sun and wind combine, you may not notice your skin burning; which won't be fun for anyone.
  • 🛶 Towel: Are you taking an active Vagabond Cultural Adventure? Watersport options like sea kayaking or surfing require a light towel. Towels are supplied by all our hotels but you may wish to bring your own.
  • 🩳 Swimsuit/Trunks: Pack a swimsuit/trunk for watersports (see above), for cheeky dips in the sea or for accessing hotel spas, where available.

🧳 Luggage

Guest luggage on Vagabond & Driftwood Tours is restricted to one suitcase per person (no bigger than 30” or 75cm along their longest side).

Soft-sided bags work great.

🎒 Daypack/Backpack. A smaller bag where you can store your daily essentials will also prove convenient.

Learn more on this luggage FAQ.

🤭 Facecloths

You might think we are joking here...

However, some hotels in Ireland do not provide facecloths.

If you like to have a facecloth to hand while travelling, we'd suggest bringing one or two along with you!


Read our blog about packing for Ireland

Do I Need Travel Insurance?

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While travel insurance is not a requirement for our tours, we strongly recommend that you purchase comprehensive travel insurance cover before your trip to Ireland.

Your policy should cover all medical costs associated with travel.

⚠️ IMPORTANT: Even though the risk is small, make sure your insurance over includes costs associated with one of your party testing positive for COVID-19 while in Ireland.

Ensure your policy also covers issues arising from:

  • Flight cancellation
  • Personal accident cover
  • Lost/stolen personal luggage
  • Lost/stolen money
  • Public liability

Vagabond Tours Ltd. can accept no responsibility for loss or damage to personal belongings or liability for personal injury/death while on tour with us.

Better safe than sorry!


Read our full terms and conditions

Do I Need A Visa To Visit Ireland?

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Are you a citizen of the USA, Canada, Australia or Aotearoa/New Zealand?

If so, you DO NOT require a visa to travel to the Republic of Ireland and/or Northern Ireland (UK) for the sole purpose of tourism.

You DO NOT need a visa as long as you meet all of the following conditions:

  • You're a citizen of the USA, Canada, Australia or Aotearoa/New Zealand
  • You're travelling for the sole purpose of tourism
  • You're staying less than 3 months in Ireland.

⚠️ IMPORTANT: Ireland is NOT a part of the ETIAS scheme. ETIAS is a pre-authorisation system for travellers planning trips to certain European countries — but not Ireland. It is expected to launch at some point in 2025.

If in any doubt, please contact the Irish embassy or consulate in your home country before embarkation for travel.

If you're NOT a citizen of the USA, Canada, Australia or Aotearoa/New Zealand, a visa may be required when visiting Ireland and/or Northern Ireland.

Once again, ETIAS pre-authorisation is not required to visit Ireland for a vacation. It only appies to the Schengen countries. Learn more about the ETIAS scheme.


Is your passport in date? Make sure you read about passport validity requirements

How Much Cash Should I Bring To Ireland?

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We recommend bringing a small amount of cash in euros to Ireland with you.

Around €300 euro should be more than enough to get you through your first days in Dublin.

🏧 Withdrawing Cash From ATMs

While in Ireland, you can withdraw cash from cash machines/ATMs as you need it.

You'll find cash machines/ATMs in most towns and gas/service stations on tour.

Just ask your VagaGuide tour guide for advice on when and where is best to withdraw cash.

💳 Card Charges & Acceptance

Check how much the charges on your cards are for withdrawing foreign currency before you leave home.

Please note that American Express (AMEX) and Discover are not widely accepted in Ireland.

Our advice is stick to Visa or Mastercard, if possible.

⚠️ Let Your Card Provider Know You're Travelling

It's important to let your bank know you are travelling to Ireland before you leave your home country.

If you don't alert your bank, payments could be blocked on the grounds of suspicious activity.

💷 Money In Northern Ireland

Remember that you'll need British pound sterling (£) in cash if your tour is visiting Northern Ireland:

The following tours visit Northern Ireland:

  💷 15 Day Driftwood All Ireland Tour

  💷 12 Day Vagabond Giant Irish Adventure

  💷 11 Day Driftwood Discover Ireland Tour

  💷 7 Day Vagabond Magnetic North Adventure Tour

  💷 6 Day Driftwood Northern Island Tour

💶 Exchanging Dollars for Euros/Pounds

If you're travelling with dollars, you can exchange them for Euro (€) or Pounds (£) at Dublin Airport or any currency exchange.

🐎 Cash For These Optional Activities

  • Black Cab Tour in Belfast
  • Dingle Folk Concert
  • Kinsale Walking History Tour
  • Slieve League Boat Trip
  • Surf Lesson in Spanish Point
  • Horseback Riding in Dingle
  • Traditional Rowing in Dingle
  • Bike Hire in Killarney
  • Guided E-Bike Tour in Connemara
  • Surf Lesson in Donegal
  • Sea Kayaking in Donegal
  • Horse-Drawn Carriage Ride
  • Walking Tour of Derry/Londonderry
  • Horseback Riding in Mayo

Read our full guide to money, budgeting and credit cards in Ireland

What Day & Time Do Tours Depart?

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All of our tours depart from Dublin's Grand Canal Hotel on either Sundays, Mondays or Tuesdays between 7.50am and 8.30am.

Please plan to arrive at the Grand Canal Hotel at least 15 minutes before the scheduled departure time.

Here is the full list of scheduled departure days and times for Vagabond and Driftwood Tours of Ireland:

Sundays at 7.50am

Sundays at 8.00am

Sundays at 8.10am

Sundays at 8.20am

Mondays at 7.50am

Mondays at 8.00am

Mondays at 8.10am

Mondays at 8.20am

Mondays at 8.20am

Tuesdays at 8.10am

Booking Suitable Flight Times

We strongly advise that you book your flights arrive at least the night before your scheduled tour departure.

We aim to have you back in Dublin between 5-6pm on the final day of your tour. If you're planning to fly out on the last night of your tour, please do not book a flight that departs Dublin Airport before 10pm.


Check return days and times for our tours

Are There Any Luggage Restrictions?

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Owing to the compact nature of our small-group tour vehicles, we operate a strict limit of one piece of luggage per person.

Your single piece of luggage should measure no longer than 30” (75cm) along its longest side. This 30” (75cm) includes any wheels that may protrude from the luggage.

Travelling as a couple? You can bring along one large suitcase instead of two medium ones.

Soft-sided bags work even better than hard shell luggage.

guide packing bags onto vehicle

🎒 Day Pack

Besides your larger bag, you can carry a small day pack on your Vagabond or Driftwood tour vehicle for those essentials.

🧳 Left Luggage

Most Dublin hotels offer a left luggage service.

You can leave luggage at the hotel while you tour and return to it when your tour is complete.

🧺 Laundry

Will you need to do laundry while on tour?

Your hotel can organise laundry facilities on tour if your tour stays for 2 nights in any of the following towns:

  • Dingle
  • Clifden
  • Kinsale
  • Westport

Just ask your VagaGuide tour guide in advance.

Please take note of our health-themed FAQs below.

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Do I Need To Be Vaccinated To Travel To Ireland?

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Vaccines are not required for travel to Ireland.

Do I Have To Wear Masks In Ireland?

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You are not required to wear face masks in public spaces in Ireland.

While it is not necessary to wear a mask on a Vagabond or Driftwod tour vehicle, you are welcome to do so, especially if you have symptoms of any respiratory illness such as a cold, flu, or COVID-19, or any contractible gastric illness.

Do I Need To Test If I Have Symptoms Of A Respiratory Illness?

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No.

Current medical guidelines in Ireland state that you do not have to take a COVID-19 test if you have respiratory symptoms unless a doctor requests you to do so.

What Happens If I Test Positive for COVID-19 On Tour? 

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If you test positive for COVID-19 on tour, you will need to comply with Irish healthcare guidelines and leave the tour to self isolate for 5 days.

Our friendly and professional team will support you in any way we can.

It is important that you have travel insurance to cover any costs incurred.

Find out how we've made changes to our tour experience and health and safety measures in the answers below.

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What Safety Precautions Are In Place?

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The welfare of our guests, as well as that of our staff and the communities we visit, will always be paramount.

Here is how we ensure the highest possible standards of hygiene and lowest risk:

  • 😷 While it is not necessary to wear a mask on Vagabond and Driftwood tour vehicles, you are welcome to do so, especially if you have symptoms of any respiratory illness such as a cold, flu, or COVID-19, or any contractible gastric illness.
  • 🧴 Hand sanitiser is provided for guests in all Vagabond and Driftwood tour vehicles.
  • 🧼 We actively and continuously review our standard operating procedures, ensuring the highest possible standards of hygiene for our vehicles.
  • 🏨 We insist that our hotel destinations, activity suppliers and other partners comply with the latest safety guidelines.
  • 🛞 Our VagaGuide tour guide team receive dedicated training to ensure safe, smooth driving and minimise risks.

Should I Wear A Mask On Tour?

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Wearing of face masks on Vagabond and Driftwood tour vehicles is not required.

While it is not necessary to wear a mask on a Vagabond or Driftwod tour vehicle, you are welcome to do so, especially if you have symptoms of any respiratory illness such as a cold, flu, or COVID-19, or any contractible gastric illness.

How To Contact Us

If you have any concerns about your upcoming tour, please do not hesitate to contact us.

☎️ By Telephone

From Ireland: +353 (0) 1 563 4358

From USA (Toll Free): 833 230 0288

From CA (Toll Free): 833 681 6903

📨 By Email: enquiries@vagabond.ie

PLEASE NOTE: Our office hours are MONDAY TO THURSDAY 9.30am-5.30pm and FRIDAY 9.30am-5.00PM GMT.

Our phone numbers divert to Ireland so 'your' time might be the middle of the night for us. Please leave a message and we'll get straight back to you.

The whole team are excited to be welcoming you to Ireland soon!

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