Written by Sarah Dilworth, Marketing Leadin Buenos Aires, Argentina. You can find more about Sarah’s travel journeys on her blog,Cultural Eclecticism.


So, you have decided to make the leap and move to Dublin. Whether it is short term or long term, you’ve made plans. You’ve found a place to stay. You’ve found academic programs that fit your interests. You’ve applied to jobs and figured out your financial situation. You’ve even joined a few expat groups and started “meeting” people. You feel prepared.

That is until you land in Dublin and have your first conversation with an Irish person and you wonder to yourself, “are they really speaking English?”. Yes, most likely they are. (Although there are still some regions, called Gaeltacht, mostly in the west, or wesht, of Ireland, where Irish is widely spoken.)

For a relatively small island nation, Ireland has many accents and distinct lexicons from every county, which only complicates matters. Understanding them all can be tricky –

here’s a reference guide to help you understand some of the most commonly used Irish slang words.

6 Irish Slang Words You Should Definitely Learn

6 Irish Slang Worsd You Should Definitely Learn

6 Irish Slang Worsd You Should Definitely Learn

6 Irish Slang Worsd You Should Definitely Learn

6 Irish Slang Worsd You Should Definitely Learn

6 Irish Slang Words You Should Definitely Learn

**Bonus Irish slang words: **

Banjaxed: ruined, broken, will not function again

That accident absolutely banjaxed my bike.

Yoke: thing

Did yer man fix that yoke in the jacks? (You can see how confusing this can be!)

Grand stretch in the evening: anytime the sun is remotely visible after 4pm

I got home work during daylight. Sure isn’t there a grand stretch in the evening?

Grand soft day: light drizzle, but often used ironically for heavy rain

It’s a grand soft day, I barely used my scarf.

Admittedly, a lot of these Irish slang words seem to be used by younger folks, often in and around pub culture. But even for those non-drinkers, these phrases seep into everyday life. You will hear your lecturers in university, doctors in hospital, and even grannies using most of these phrases!

What Irish slang words and phrases are the most puzzling?


Written by Sarah Dilworth, Marketing Leadin Buenos Aires, Argentina. You can find more about Sarah’s travel journeys on her blog, Cultural Eclecticism.