Picturesque landscapes, stunning architecture, a historically significant culture, and charming and welcoming people, Ireland has it all. Situated in Northwestern Europe, this island nation provides its citizens with a high standard of living, a thriving economy, incredible business and investment opportunities, and a stable and secure environment above all. It is no wonder individuals apply for the Irish Golden Visa to acquire an Irish passport.
If you’re planning on relocating to Ireland and becoming a citizen of this nation, the Irish Immigrant Investor Program might be a suitable solution for you. In this guide, you will learn everything you need regarding:
- How to get an Irish passport
- The benefits of Irish citizenship
- Golden Visa investment options
- Application process
Individuals must note that there are certain cases where they can apply for an Irish passport without applying for citizenship. If they or their parents were born in Ireland on or after January 1, 2005, their right to Irish citizenship depends on their parents’ citizenship at the time of birth.
Benefits of Irish Passport
Ireland’s Golden Visa program provides you with a renewable residence permit that can eventually lead you to Irish citizenship in as little as five years. Of course, the program requires you to make a qualifying economic investment in the Irish economy in exchange for the residence permit.
Once obtained, you and your family members will have access to incredible healthcare, world-class education, and more. Here is a list of benefits that you can enjoy when you have an Irish passport.
Easy access to EU for travel and work
Travel visa-free across member states of the European Union and access other EU benefits as an Irish citizen – such as the right to work anywhere in the European Union without needing a work permit. Owing to this mobility across EU member states, the Irish Immigrant Investor program is quite attractive among foreign investors.
To read more about EU residency and citizenship, visit our articles –
- Golden Visas Europe – Invest in EU Residency & Citizenship
- How To Become An EU Citizen: Everything You Need To Know
Work and study in the United Kingdom
After obtaining an Irish passport, you also gain the right to live in the United Kingdom. In addition to this, you can study or work in the UK with an Irish passport. This opportunity makes the Irish Golden Visa ideal for potential investors with families.
Get regular income from your investments
Under the Irish Immigrant Investor Program, you are eligible to get a return from your investments made in Ireland. But this will completely depend on the amount of investment made or whether you can retain the investment for the minimum required period.
Top class educational opportunities for all students
The Irish educational system is top-notch, comprises various practices and fields and ensures equal opportunities for all students. As per the Organisation for Economic Co-operation & Development, Ireland is one of the top-performing countries regarding education. Once you obtain an Irish passport, your children can access free education across all levels – school, college and university. Moreover, you would all have the right to study in any other EU country.
Exercise fundamental rights
The constitution of Ireland guarantees a handful of fundamental rights to all its citizens. You are eligible to exercise those rights once you become a citizen of Ireland. These fundamental rights are: Property rights, family rights, and religious freedom.
With an Irish passport, you can travel to over 170 countries across the world. Here is a list of the countries and their visa requirements.
|Angola||pre-visa on arrival|
|Antigua and Barbuda||visa-free/180 days|
|Bahrain||visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days|
|Bangladesh||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||visa-free/90 days|
|Burkina Faso||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Burundi||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Cape Verde||visa-free (EASE)/30 days|
|Comoros||visa on arrival/45 days|
|Congo (Dem. Rep.)||eVisa/90 days|
|Costa Rica||visa-free/90 days|
|Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)||pre-enrollment/90 days|
|Cuba||tourist card/30 days|
|Egypt||visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days|
|El Salvador||visa-free/90 days|
|Ethiopia||visa on arrival / eVisa|
|Gabon||visa on arrival / eVisa/90 days|
|Guinea-Bissau||visa on arrival / eVisa/90 days|
|Hong Kong||visa-free/90 days|
|Indonesia||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Iraq||visa on arrival/60 days|
|Jordan||visa on arrival|
|Laos||visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days|
|Lebanon||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Madagascar||visa on arrival / eVisa/90 days|
|Malawi||visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days|
|Maldives||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Marshall Islands||visa-free/90 days|
|Mauritania||visa on arrival|
|Mongolia||visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days|
|Mozambique||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Nepal||visa on arrival/90 days|
|New Zealand||eTA/90 days|
|Nigeria||pre-visa on arrival|
|North Macedonia||visa-free/90 days|
|Oman||visa on arrival / eVisa/14 days|
|Palau||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Papua New Guinea||visa on arrival / eVisa/60 days|
|Rwanda||visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days|
|Saint Kitts and Nevis||visa-free/90 days|
|Saint Lucia||visa-free/42 days|
|Samoa||visa on arrival/60 days|
|Sao Tome and Principe||visa-free/15 days|
|Saudi Arabia||visa on arrival / eVisa/90 days|
|Seychelles||tourist registration/90 days|
|Sierra Leone||visa on arrival/30 days|
|Solomon Islands||visa on arrival/90 days|
|Somalia||visa on arrival/30 days|
|South Africa||visa-free/90 days|
|South Korea||eTA/90 days|
|Sri Lanka||eTA/30 days|
|St. Vincent and the Grenadines||visa-free/30 days|
|Tajikistan||visa on arrival / eVisa/45 days|
|Tanzania||visa on arrival / eVisa|
|Timor-Leste||visa on arrival/90 days|
|Togo||visa on arrival/7 days|
|Tonga||visa on arrival/31 days|
|Trinidad and Tobago||visa-free|
|Tuvalu||visa on arrival/30 days|
|United Arab Emirates||free visa on arrival/30 days|
|United States of America||eTA/90 days|
|Viet Nam||eVisa/30 days|
|Zimbabwe||visa on arrival/90 days|
How to Obtain an Irish Passport by Investment
You can obtain residency in Ireland by investing in the country through the Ireland Immigrant Investor Visa Program. Once you invest in the nation’s economy, you will be provided with a Stamp 4 visa that will allow you to stay there as a resident. After you maintain your residency for five years, you can apply for Irish citizenship. If you have any queries regarding your application, you might want to contact the Immigration Service Delivery at the Department of Justice and Equality or consult with a Golden Visa specialist.
Applicants need to keep in mind that they need to be physically present and be tax resident of Ireland to obtain citizenship in the country. After you obtain your certificate of citizenship, you can apply for your passport through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Ireland.
Irish Passport - Requirements
You need to meet the following requirements to be able to apply for Irish citizenship:
- Be over the age of 18
- You need to have resided in Ireland for five years out of nine years, and more specifically, for one continuous year immediately prior to your application for citizenship in Ireland.
- Demonstrate proof of your intent to stay in Ireland.
- You should be of outstanding character.
- Be present for your citizenship process in Ireland.
Obtaining an Irish Passport - Application Procedure
Once all required documents and the application form are submitted, it takes around 12 months approximately for your Irish passport to get processed. You should keep in mind that this timeline may vary from one person to another depending on personal circumstances.
To apply for Irish citizenship, you need to submit a few documents along with your application form. They are as listed below:
- Your current passport, or any other valid passport
- Certified copy of your original birth certificate. In cases where the original is not in English, a certified English translation should be attached as well.
- A copy of your Immigrant Registration Card
- Two color-photographs that have been taken within thirty days of your application date. The photos must be self-attested, or signed and dated.
- Three different types of residential proof for each year that you have declared to have resided in Ireland. This can be your rent agreement, household expenses bill, bank statements and so on.
- Bank statement of at least three of the last six months
- Updated tax clearance certificate
Please note that in cases where an application is rejected, the relevant authorities will not return the application documents. It is therefore recommended to keep a copy of all the shared documents for your personal record.
Application fees cost around €175 for the Irish passport. The fee can only be paid via a bank transfer, and is non-refundable in cases where the application is rejected by the concerned authorities.
After your application is approved, you will be eligible to receive a Certificate of Naturalization. Once you get this certificate, you will be required to pay an amount of €950. An additional fee of €200 is applicable to children.
Approval of application form
After your application is verified and approved, a letter will be shared with you affirming that you have been given the certificate of naturalization. Thereafter, you will be required to be present at your citizenship ceremony in Ireland. Once you complete all these steps, you will be eligible to obtain the Irish passport. Applicants must keep in mind that only adults are required to attend the citizenship ceremony.
This is the last step of your naturalization process. At the citizenship ceremony, you reaffirm your loyalty and commitment to the country of Ireland. After you make your declaration, you complete your naturalization process and get your certificate. Applicants must note that this step is both crucial and mandatory to complete their naturalization process.
Get your Irish passport
Once your naturalization process is complete, you become an Irish citizen. You will also receive your Irish passport in due course after you apply for it through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Ireland permits dual citizenship. Even if you are a citizen of a different country, you can obtain Irish citizenship and maintain your original citizenship if both countries allow it.
Irish Citizenship by Investment - Eligibility
If you are planning to obtain Irish citizenship, you need to fulfill the following criteria:
- You need to be 18 years old or above.
- You are not an EEA national.
- You have no criminal record.
- Your net worth is at least €2 million.
- You will be investing without applying for any loan.
Investment Options under Ireland Golden Visa Program
As per Ireland’sGolden Visa program, you can place your investment in the country and qualify for residency via four routes:
- Enterprise Investment
- Approved Investment Funds
- Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs)
Under this option, you need to make a minimum investment of €1,000,000 in an enterprise or business running in Ireland. Applicants must make sure that they maintain this investment for at least three years.
You can also make a minimum investment of €1,000,000 in an approved investment fund in Ireland and sustain it for a minimum of three years to qualify for the program.
Real Estate Investment Trusts
If you are planning to do a low-risk investment in Ireland, you can choose to invest in a Real Estate Investment Trust. Please note that the minimum investment under this option is €2,000,000, and you need to maintain the investment for at least three years.
Under this option, you can make a donation to a qualifying philanthropic project in the country. In this case, you have to make a minimum charitable donation of €500,000
Supporting Documents Required for Ireland Golden Visa
You need to collect and submit the following documents when you apply for Ireland’s Golden Visa program:
- Your full civil birth certificate
- Proof of your address and name
- A copy of your Public Services Card, or original government issued photo identification document
- Proof of your net worth of at least €2,000,000, declaring your business and investment endeavors from the last year, and showcasing general income, financial investments, and loans under your name.
- Proof of having the minimum required funds for investment, and your capability in investing it in Ireland.
- Proof of the source of your funds, highlighting how you have received the funds and where you want to use them for investments.
- Deeds of Sale
- Inheritance and Gifts (if required)
- Divorce Settlement (if required)
- Proof of your good character. You can get statements of character from every country you lived in for more than six months in the last ten years, and submit those statements with your application as proof of your moral standing.
- You must also provide a statement of character for any of your children included in your application form who are over the age of 16.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Irish Passport
How long to get Irish passport?
If you are applying online for your first Irish passport, it would take around 20 working days to get your application processed. On the other hand, if you are applying via post, it would take around eight weeks for your application to get processed.
How can you track the progress of your application?
Through the Irish Government Passport Service, you can check the status of your application online. Make sure to keep your application form number handy to use this service.
Where is the Irish passport office?
The Department of Foreign Affairs is located in Dublin at:
Knockmaun House, 42-47 Lower Mount Street, Dublin 2, D02 TN83, Ireland.
Irish passport photo requirements?
You need to submit four recent photographs of yourself with your application form. Two of these photos must be signed on the backside by the person who has witnessed the application.
How powerful is the Irish passport?
With a mobility score of 172, the Irish passport ranks among the top 10 passports globally.
How can you qualify for an Irish passport?
You must be an Irish citizen to qualify for an Irish passport. If you were born in Ireland before 2005 or if you were born abroad to a parent who was born in Ireland before 2005, then you are automatically an Irish citizen. If you don’t fall under any of these categories, then you need to obtain citizenship through investment in Ireland.
Can a non-Irish citizen get an Irish passport?
Non-Irish citizens can obtain an Irish passport if-
- One of their parents was born in Ireland (Citizenship by descent).
- One of their grandparents was born in Ireland/one of your parents was an Irish Citizen at the time of your birth (Foreign Birth Registration Certificate).
- They have a certificate of naturalization.
How do I get an Irish passport by descent?
If you or your parents were born in Ireland before 2005, you can obtain an Irish passport by descent.
What are the rights of Irish citizens?
The rights of Irish citizens are:
- Freedom to carry a strong Irish passport
- Live and work in Ireland indefinitely without restriction
- Vote in general elections, constitutional referendums, or presidential elections
- Be elected a member of the Irish government and Council of the European Union
- Live, travel, and work in any EU country
Is Irish citizenship valuable?
Ireland has one of the most valuable citizenships available. Irish passport holders enjoy freedom of movement throughout the EU, as well as visa-free and visa-on-arrival access to 174 countries worldwide. Ireland is considered one of the safest countries in the world, and Irish citizens have access to a high standard of education and enhanced social benefits.
How many generations can you go back for Irish citizenship?
You can acquire Irish citizenship by tracing your ancestry up to the third generation. This means that you are eligible if your parent, grandparent, or great-grandparent was an Irish citizen at the time of your birth. However, it’s important to note that having ancestors beyond the third generation, such as great-great-grandparents, who were Irish citizens does not grant you eligibility for Irish citizenship.