Why is Dublin so expensive? Top 5 reasons revealed

Ireland’s capital is a great place to live, even if it is going to cost you. But what exactly makes Dublin so expensive? We have rounded up the top five reasons here.

The capital of the Emerald Isle is a fantastic place to live for many reasons. There is a huge selection of things to keep you occupied from museums and culture to bars and restaurants, and Dublin is a diverse and bustling European city with some of the friendliest residents you will meet.

Unfortunately, it also comes with a high price tag.

Dublin has gained the title of one of the most expensive cities in Europe to live. This high cost of living has proven too much for many would-be residents and holidaymakers, leading them to choose other destinations where their money may go a bit further.

But what makes Dublin so expensive exactly?

5. Expensive accommodation – pricey central accommodation

Why is Dublin so expensive? One of the reasons is the price of accommodation.
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From solely a tourists point of view, even a weekend away to Dublin can put a strain on your bank account.

Hotel prices in the heart of the city, if not booked far enough in advance, will often pass the €100 mark for a single person. And that’s for the most basic of hotels, too.

You may indeed get more for your money as you edge out of the city. But if you choose to do this, you may, unfortunately, encounter the next item on our list.

4. Cost of transport – the cost of getting around

The cost of getting around Dublin is high.
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One of the things that contribute to the high cost of living in Dublin is the comparatively expensive public transport. For tourists, a short excursion on the bus can add up quickly.

Commuters who choose to purchase a monthly bus or rail ticket will be looking at approximately €100 or more. A monthly ticket for the Luas isn’t much better.

Unfortunately, city transportation in Dublin remains some the most expensive in Europe.

3. Food and drink – no cheap pints in Dublin

Why is Dublin so expensive? One of the reasons is the cost of food and drink.
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It’s no secret that Ireland is known for its fondness of alcohol, and Dublin is no exception.

Unfortunately, getting yourself a pint of Guinness in the tourist-trap that is Temple Bar may cost you a pretty penny. In fact, it will average out at somewhere between €8 to €10 to buy one there.

Due to its diversity, Dublin is blessed with some fantastic restaurants, showcasing some of the finest cuisines from all over the world.

Unfortunately, even if you decide to eat out in an inexpensive place, it will most likely cost you around €20 per person.

2. The Silicon Valley of Europe – a business hotspot

Dublin has become the Silicone Valley of Europe.
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In recent years, Dublin has seen an influx of tech giants choosing the city as their European base.

Huge corporations like Amazon, Facebook, Google, and Linkedin have all created hubs in the city, partly due to the low corporate tax they enjoy here.

The city has undoubtedly benefited from this in the form of increased employment for many. Job opportunities have been created in Dublin that would not have existed before the so-called ‘digital boom’. However, it also has its downsides.

For one, demand for temporary employee property has increased, boosting house prices to unaffordable levels, which brings us to our next point.

1. Housing prices – the crazy cost of living

Why is Dublin so expensive? One of the reasons is house prices.
Credit: geograph.ie / Joseph Mischyshyn

It is no secret that Dublin is facing a housing crisis. Rates of homelessness in the city are increasing daily, and price tags assigned to even the dingiest of flatshares have become fodder for memes.

There are many complex reasons for this, but the three main reasons as to why is Dublin so expensive are often cited.

The first is a simple shortage of housing. This causes immense competition for property-hunters, often at the peril of first-time buyers. It doesn’t help that there is a lack of high-rise apartments in the city centre, meaning less space per square metre for housing.

The second reason is building work that had been abandoned during the recession and was never picked up again. Dublin was severely affected by the economic crisis of 2008, and its pace of building new houses has not fully recovered.

Thirdly are the massive numbers of students that have been attracted to Dublin. Alongside Trinity College Dublin, the city boasts many universities that attract students from across the world. The housing supply in the city simply cannot keep up with the demand, which causes housing prices to soar.

Dublin is an ideal city to visit and live in for many reasons. However, the high cost of living here isn’t one of them. And while there are many complex reasons behind this, it’s safe to say it’s not showing signs of getting cheaper any time soon.

One positive of this is that many tourists and residents have begun exploring other options. Smaller Irish cities and towns are now getting a look in, and with that, a much-needed boost to their local economy. So it’s not all bad, right?

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