What to do in Dublin on business travel
Ireland’s capital city is buzzing at the moment; with a thriving economy and a skyline dotted with cranes building new hotels, offices, and apartment buildings. With rents in the city sky high, and limited available accommodation, this has resulted in an upsurge in workers coming into the city from around the country from Monday to Friday, and returning to their homes at the weekend.
Workforce travel in any city can be draining and feel isolated at times. Since Dublin has a small city centre, you're able to go to one area and find gyms, restaurants, and local pubs - so you can feel more at home. If you’re coming to Dublin for work travel or bleisure travel and trying to get settled in, we’ve put together this city guide just for you.
How to meet new people
It can be a challenge to meet new people if you’re part of a transient workforce that’s only in town on weekdays. Depending on your interests, though, there are a lot of ways to meet locals and make Dublin feel like home, especially if you return to Dublin regularly for jobs.
- Join a sports club like Pulse Triathlon or take a class at FlyeFit. A healthy body helps promote a healthy mind, and group classes can help you get to know new people while you work out. Check to see if any gym memberships or stipends are included in your company travel policy in the duty of care section.
- Check out local events on MeetUp, which include everything from drawing and language exchanges to poker, book clubs, 5-a-side football and much more - if you have energy after a long day on site or an extra day in town. Dublin has a coastal rail service known as the DART, that can bring you out of the city centre into some scenic areas like Howth and Greystones.
- Grab some of your colleagues and go to a pub quiz - put your smartphones away and cheat the old-fashioned way, by trying to get the table next to you to give you the answers
- If you’re single, find a tour guide to show you around Dublin at a speed dating event
Balancing meeting new people with work in a city you’re only present in on weekdays can be a challenge, but it’s totally doable if you put the effort in - and can lead to better overall wellness.
Did you know that the wellness of employees has a direct impact on the health of the overall business? Learn more about employee wellness in our latest ebook.
Where to go out
Dublin’s social scene is famous worldwide - and for good reason. For a few happy hour drinks after work, pick the area that suits you best; Dawson Street is home to a variety of upmarket restaurants and bars and is a high-brow area popular with white collar workers; Camden Street is a popular choice with younger people and for more casual drinks, while Temple Bar is considered expensive and is more popular with tourists than workers.
Cinema-goers are spoiled for choice; as well as a number of large cinema chains, Dublin offers independent cinema at the IFI, classic films at The Stella in Rathmines, and the Lighthouse Cinema in Smithfield.
Dublin also has a thriving comedy scene - on any given night of the week there are at least two or three different shows, many of them free to attend. Carlsberg Unfiltered at the Landmark Pub, which takes place on Wexford Street on Wednesday evenings from 8, even offers the first 20 people in the door a free drink.
What to eat
Dublin’s food scene is a million miles ahead of where it was just 10 years ago; there’s an abundance of choice to cater for every taste and budget. Here are some of our favourite casual dining choices that are good for groups, don’t need a reservation, and won’t break the bank:
- If you’re after a burger, you could try the recently opened Five Guys on George’s Street or Wow Burger on Camden Street, but the winner for us is Bunsen, a trendy little chain that has exploded across the city over the last few years.
- You can’t throw a stone in Dublin without hitting a burrito place; from the ever-popular Boojum to smaller outfits like Little Ass Burrito Bar, you’ll never be short of salsa or guacamole while you’re in town.
- If you want something exciting, Neon on Camden Street is an excellent choice for Chinese dishes; Kerala Kitchen on Baggot Street does super tasty Indian food; and Yamamori on George’s Street is popular with Japanese food lovers.
If you’re after something a little more upmarket, many of Dublin’s best restaurants like Marco Pierre White do very reasonable early-bird menus.
What are the challenges and advantages of working away from home in a new city? Leave a comment below and let us know. Do you have any other tips for travelers working in Dublin?