Is Ireland cheaper than Scotland? Let’s compare them

Scotland and Ireland are two of the few nations in the world to command such respect and majesty. These two Celtic countries in the British Isles have incredible green countryside, beautiful surroundings, wild beaches, rich historical sites and a notoriously friendly people.

However, they are two different countries with their own customs and traditions. Therefore, if visitors only have the opportunity and the budget to explore one of these beautiful nations, it can be difficult to choose between Scotland and Ireland.

Both countries have a wealth of attractions for visitors, and one could definitely spend weeks exploring them. But how can visitors know which location is best and affordable for them?

Budget for accommodation in both countries


Accommodation costs are likely to have the biggest impact on their holiday budget in Scotland. When it comes to cheap hosting, however, there are plenty of options. There is usually at least one hostel in most metropolitan cities. The cheapest dorm bed in a hostel will cost visitors around £20 per night.

There are many B&Bs spread across Scotland that charge £70 to £100 per night for a room if visitors don’t want to stay in a hostel.


The very first, and often most important, part of an Ireland trip expense to assess is the cost of accommodation. If the visitors are solo travelers staying in hostels or a couple sharing a private room on Airbnb, they can expect to spend around €25-30 per person per night on average. If visitors add a few fancier bed and breakfasts or lodges to their holiday in Ireland, this will add up to around €40-50 per person per night.

Visitors will find that fares vary greatly depending on where they are in the region. When it comes to accommodation costs, Dublin is perhaps the most expensive.

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Where there is food, there is heart

Irish and Scottish cuisines have a common heritage with which they have combined their traditional dishes due to their history closely linked to England and other parts of Europe.


Food prices in Scotland vary depending on where customers choose to dine. or three-course meals for around £15-20. At dinner time, the same food will cost much more.

Visitors can expect to pay around £10-15 for a hearty meal in a pub, either lunch or dinner, depending on what they order. For visitors, the most profitable food choice is to shop and cook for themselves.

Accordingly, tourists should budget around £10 per person per day if planning to cook their own food, and around £20-25 per person per day if planning to eat one sit-down meal per day.


From upscale restaurants to small neighborhood pubs, visitors will find great Irish food they wouldn’t believe. Irish grocery costs are cheaper than those in Western Europe, the UK and the US. In this case, visitors will probably be able to get by on around €15-20 per person per day in terms of food.

If visitors don’t want to cook for themselves, there are plenty of dining options in Ireland. Fast food and street food are commonly available across the country and could be the most profitable alternative. A sit-down dinner in a mid-range restaurant or pub will cost tourists around €15 per person.

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Transport prices are also important

Another factor to consider when planning a trip to Scotland is the cost of transport.


Another factor to consider when planning a trip to Scotland is the cost of public transport. Visitors who want to cover a lot of land at their own pace and possibly add a few off-the-beaten-path sites to their itinerary should consider renting a car. A road trip is not only one of the best ways to see Scotland, but the average daily cost of car hire is not prohibitive.

Tourists should expect to spend around £30 per day on car hire on average. Visitors should expect to pay an extra £20 per day or £10 per person if splitting the cost between two if they intend to refuel every three days or more.


The cost of commuting will also play a significant role in the final Irish holiday budget. Ireland is a nation best seen by vehicles outside of major cities. Public transportation is available, but it’s expensive and frequent, especially if visitors want to spend more time in more rural areas and get off the beaten track. So, if visitors wish to travel alone in Ireland, renting a car will be their best alternative for getting around.

Visitors should expect to pay around €30-40 per day on average for car hire in Ireland, or around €15-20 per person per day if the cost is split between two people.

It may seem like there isn’t much of a contrast between Scotland and Ireland at times, which makes choosing between the two quite difficult. Visitors should prefer Scotland if they want to see the most diverse scenic beauty in the shortest amount of time. While Ireland’s natural beauty is breathtaking, Scotland’s is far more stunning and diverse.

However, Scotland may be the more reasonable of the two in terms of cost and affordability, especially if visitors are willing to camp in the wild. The savings on accommodation is enough to convince many people to visit Scotland rather than Ireland.

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