The island of Ireland
The most westerly island in Europe. It is 450 km long and 300 km wide and is divided into the Republic of Ireland. Ireland enjoys a rich diversity of ethnic groups and cultures. English is spoken by everyone in Ireland and in some areas Irish is spoken also.
Galway, the largest county in Connaught, is celebrated in song and story throughout the world and takes centre stage on Ireland’s western seaboard. A spectacularly beautiful county, it is a medley of contrasts - the wildest and remotest of countryside teamed with one of Europe’s most vibrant and popular cities. Drawn as if by a magnet, visitors come again and again, captivated by this most special of Irish counties.
Galway City at the mouth of Galway Bay is both a picturesque and lively city with a wonderful culture that mixes the avant-garde culture with the traditional and a fascinating mixture of locally owned, speciality shops, often featuring locally made crafts. Indeed local handcrafts are a feature of the entire region including hand knits, pottery, glass, jewellery and woodwork.
The city has many relics of its medieval past and is worth taking time to explore. It has changed considerably over the last number of years and features a fascinating juxtaposition of new and ancient architecture. The centre of the city is conveniently compact enough to ramble around comfortably.
For those interested in seeing some of Galway and Ireland’s best tourist attractions, delegates will have the opportunity to purchase optional tour tickets on their registration form.
Important Facts about Ireland
Ireland enjoys relatively cool summers. The daily temperature in August is on average 16 °C. Galway enjoys reasonable sunshine in August with unpredictable rain showers. These rain showers generally don’t last long, but it is recommended that you have an umbrella or light rain gear to hand.
Galway provides a unique shopping experience with a wide range of shops to cater for the tastes of both visitors and locals. As well as highstreet shops, there is an interesting variety of specialist and tourist orientated shops, which offer unique and interesting gifts. There are also speciality booksellers, which offer thousands of rare and second hand books at very affordable prices. Many of the shops are located on streets in the main shopping area in the centre of the city including Galway's famous bustling market which has been trading in Church lane by St Nicholas' Church in the centre of the city for centuries. The city centre shopping areas are supplemented by a number of enclosed shopping centres, most of which are situated on the city's outskirts.
The Conference Organising Committee or its agents will not be responsible for any medical expenses, loss or accidents incurred during the conference. Delegates are strongly advised to arrange their own personal insurance to cover medical and other expenses including accident or loss. Where a delegate has to cancel for medical reasons, the normal cancellation policy will apply. It is recommended that citizens from EU countries bring with them a current EHIC card.
Value Added Tax (VAT) is charged at 23% on most goods. Cash back is the simplest and most widely used VAT refund service that issues cash refunds on departure for a handling fee. Ask for cash back form when you make your purchase.
A small tip is appreciated for good service in restaurants. Tipping is not usual in pubs and bars. Tip cabs 10% and porters 60c per bag.
Currency: The currency in Ireland is the Euro
Credit Cards: Major credit cards are widely accepted.
Smoking Policy: Under Irish law smoking is not permitted in pubs, restaurants, hotel lobbies and all enclosed public buildings.
Electricity: 220 Volts
Time: From March to October, Ireland operates on Greenwich Mean Time + 1 hour.
What to pack: Rainwear and comfortable shoes are advised.