AS FÁILTE IRELAND revealed in a gorgeous montage video this week, we have a population of about 5 million, but last year received 8 million visitors.
That means, technically (kinda), that the tourists outnumber us. So isn’t it time we stopped rolling our eyes and started giving them some helpful advice? Yes. It is.
1. We’re not all related, y’know
So, no, we don’t know Pat Murphy from Ennis. We’re a different Murphy. One of several thousand, as it happens.
2. Touristy shops are not the place to buy everything
If you really need to buy those “Luck of the Irish” fridge magnets and hoodies, then by all means, go ahead. Everyone gets some touristy trinkets when they go away. But, for God’s sake, don’t get the full leprechaun outfit. Step away.
3. You might come up against some resistance describing yourself as “Irish”
OK, so you consider yourself Irish. Some Irish-born people will find this idea frustrating, and think you’re confusing heritage and ancestry. Ignore the haters. Many of us are just pleased you think we’re great enough to lay claim on.
4. This is not an acceptable price for a pint – anywhere
DON’T BE FOOLED.
5. If it’s prefaced with “traditional Irish” it probably isn’t
Traditional Irish hairdryer, traditional Irish salad tongs, traditional Irish ukulele. Know when to stop.
6. Please don’t wear those massive Sea World ponchos
Tourists trundling around in the sartorial equivalent of a black sack make us feel all self-conscious about how rainy we are. Plus, Irish weather isn’t really rain-poncho-worthy.
7. Say “thanks” when you get off the bus
It’s practically a by-law. Expect looks of unadulterated horror from the locals if you dismount an Irish bus without paying your respects to the lad who drove you.
8. Don’t mention the St Patty’s/St Paddy’s Day war
Here’s a tip every tourist can use: Feck shortening it, and just say “St Patrick’s Day”. Then you won’t get pedants getting all het up correcting you.
Don’t mind them, anyway. If someone starts griping at you about saying “St Patty” just reply with a smooth “Lá le Pádraig”. That’ll soften their cough.
9. And, er, don’t listen to this
No, really. Please don’t.
Thank you, come again! Share your tips for our tourist pals in the comments.