last edit: February 2021
By public transports
Public transports in Dublin do not properly work with Google Maps, which makes moving around in the city and to the spots complicated. In addition, the websites and apps available are reliable, but not easy to use. As a result I think it is worth to provide a whole section in this guide to explain how to best use public transport in Dublin to get to the spots.
You will need either a Bus or the Dart.
For both of them, you will need either coins or a “leapcard”.
I recommend using a leapcard because:
- You will need it every times you will need public transport
- With Android phone it is easily rechargeable with the Leap Top-up app: [android]. This app is not available for iOS for now, but it is in development.
- You can top up the leapcard easily online or at Luas, DART & Commuter Rail ticket machines.
- If you prefer coins, be aware that bus driver won’t give change back
Dublin Bus also works with a monthly or yearly subscription but it is quite expensive (€1450 yearly and €145 monthly, for Bus only – completely crazy if you want my opinion 🙄 more info), so except if you are an everyday commuter you would need to pay for each trip individually.
Honestly, bus journeys are a bit tricky in Dublin so if you are new to the game I would recommend to take the following steps seriously (there is nothing more annoying that missing the bus with all your kitesurfing gears #truestory):
- Identify the bus number you want to use (refer to the spot chapter)
- Identify the closest bus stop from your place with this bus number: [Dublin Bus MAP]
- Check the schedule of the bus. Example for bus 130: [schedule].
- Just before leaving, check the real time information at your stop. Example for (my) stop number 7591 (for bus 130): [real time]. To do so, you can also use the Dublin Bus app: [android | iOS]. This is important because very often the buses are not exactly on time.
- Remember to raise your hand when the bus arrives: if you don’t raise your hand, the bus may not stop.
Final note: I never had issue with hopping on a bus or in the Dart with my kitesurfing gears, even when I was coming back from a session with sandy gears.
Renting a car
Renting a car is definitely a good option to go to the spots because it saves you from walking with your gears.
However renting a car for kitesurfing:
– could be expensive: you may need to rent a car for a whole day or even whole weekend while your session lasts only half day.
– needs to be very flexible: it relies on quickly changing wind conditions and could happen over the weekend when most of the car rental places are closed.
For the expensive point, please refer to the article: kitesurfing groups in Dublin.
- Flexibility: book, pick up and return anytime. For example you can book and return on Sunday afternoon (when most of the traditional car rental places are closed).
- Many localizations: the cars are available for booking pretty much everywhere in Dublin, so you will easily find one or more close to your place.
- Insurance: no need to worry about the insurance, which personally has always been a pain for me when renting a car in a traditional place: with those services your are fully covered.
- No worry with fuel: in most cases, when you will pick up the car it will be already with high fuel (personally it never happened to me to get a car with low fuel and if that happened you could maybe even make it to the spots considering all spots are max 20km from Dublin city center). Anyway: when returning the car, you don’t need to worry about refilling the fuel (this is done by the Yuko or GoCar services on a regular basis). You will still be charged though for the fuel as the kilometers traveled are calculated.
- First 50km are for free: this is subject to change, as of now Yuko and GoCar won’t charge you for the first 50km, which should be enough for a round trip to the spots from any place in Dublin city center.
But how to choose between Yuko and Gocar?
- Prices, insurances, quality and cleanliness of the vehicles, are pretty much the same.
- From my point of view the most important is which car is closest to your place.
- Major difference for a first booking with Yuko: you will be able to unlock the car with the Yuko app or with a “smartcard” that they send you after your first order (more info). Once you have the smartcard, you can use it with all your bookings with Yuko.
For your first order, this smartcard can take one or two (business) days to arrive at your place, which can be too long if you want to take advantage of the flexibility of this service and book the Yuko on Friday to go kiting on Saturday morning.
However, I would not recommend to rely only on the Yuko app to open your Yuko because you won’t always have Internet connection at the spots. This is particularly true in Dollymount and you may end up unable to reopen your Yuko at the end of your session (happened to me once!). This type of problems won’t happen with GoCar because you will find a physical set of keys in each car.
See you at the beach!