Garda National Immigration Bureau Card

Any foreign national entering Ireland long term whether it is to study, work or relocate is required by law to register with the Garda National Immigration Bureau as soon as possible. Please note that foreign national refers to anyone who does not belong to a member state of the Europe Union or Switzerland.

Those outside of Dublin can apply at their local Garda station. However, for those based in Dublin the Bureau is located in the center of town, 13/14 Burgh Quay, therefore is easy to access by public transport. The Bureau opens at 8am every morning and I cannot stress enough the advantage of arriving early. I arrived at midday and I was not officially registered until 7pm that night.

The process is long and involves multiple steps. First, you will have to wait in line to collect a number according to what you are there for. After this you will have to wait for that number to be called (which can take hours), where you will have your documents scanned, you will be photographed and in some cases fingerprinted. Lastly, you will have to wait for your card to be issued. Ensure, that you budget the immigration fee into your moving/travel plans as this will set you back 300 euro which can be paid by credit card or debit. The Bureau does not accept cash payments.

The process is expensive, time consuming but most importantly 100% necessary – so take a book, tablet or study materials to keep occupied. It is essential that you not only have this form of identification to be permitted to work but should you travel abroad during your stay in Ireland, it is vital that you carry your GNIB identification as you will need to provide this along with your passport and visa.

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