When we went to Ireland first time, we took a taxi at the airport. The taxi driver was speaking a language I didn’t understand so I thought it could be Irish language. Then we figured out he was speaking English with super strong accent that it was almost impossible to understand.
My first impression about Irish accent was like a horror movie. I was avoiding to meet locals and going to see apartments alone. My self confidence went below zero until I get used to it.
In my opinion, among all English speaking countries Ireland is the hardest to understand. Not only the accent, they also a good amount of expressions that can make you feel dumb.
If you are travelling or moving to Ireland, it’s better to be prepared of these expressions.
Everything is “lovely” in Ireland. It means “very nice”, and be ready to have lovely experience in this lovely country 🙂
‘Half 10’ means 10:30
Maybe the short version of this expression would be better “10 half” meaning “10 and half” but you will hear half and then the number in Ireland. I don’t know why!
‘Your man’ and ‘your one’ have nothing to do with possession
So when someone tells you ‘I was talking to your man about…’, stop thinking about which one of your men is involved here. This means ‘I was talking to a man’. Simple, right? It still took me months after moving to Ireland to stop asking ‘My man? How do you know my man?!’
As well as “your man” and “your woman”, you have “that young one” meaning that girl and” that young fella” meaning that boy!
Don’t say “fine” when you hear “Hi how are you?”
In Ireland there’s no simple “hi” or “hello”, there’re “hi how are you” or “hello how are you”. At the beginning I was thinking how nice people that they ask me “how am I” and many times I had tended to say “thanks I’m fine”. But in fact this is just the way of greet so don’t say how you are doing, simply just say “hi” and that’s it.
‘Jacks’ means a toilet
This is a simple one, but it needed to be said.
Things are grand or shite
Yes, it’s great and shit, but pronounced differently. For me, this is usually the quickest way to find out if someone’s Irish, because I don’t remember hearing this from someone who’s not.
‘What’s the craic?’ and ‘Story?’ are legit questions
Craic meaning fun in Gailge and it is pronounced ‘crack’, but it doesn’t mean the same. The most literal translation is ‘fun’, but the use is much wider than that. Having the craic is having a good laugh or fun, and you’ll hear it on daily basis. What’s the craic with tomorrow night? This means what’s happening tomorrow night. Also if someone asks you “What’s the Craic” this means “How are you?”
‘Cheers’ is everything!
My favourite point of this list: the word cheers can be used for an unbelievable amount of purposes. You want to say cheers? Cheers! Thank you? Cheers! You’re welcome? Cheers! Enjoy? Cheers! Bye? You get the point…
Prepare yourself and leave half an hour before the time you were thinking. Because goodbyes can take longer than you think.
Alright, all the best now, bye bye bye bye bye bye bye bye bye bye bye bye bye bye bye
bye bye bye bye …
Thanks a mill
“thanks a mill” for thanks a million. Every time you go shopping they don’t just say one thank you but thanks a million.
This completes my lists 🙂 Do you want to add some Irish expressions? Let me know in the comment box below!