We pack for a week’s worth of clothing regardless of how long we’re in Ireland. So this usually requires doing a wee bit of laundry in Ireland.
Where we stay often determines how that laundry gets done.
Self-Catering Laundry in Ireland
The easiest of course is renting a self-catering apartment or cottage with a washer and dryer so you can do your laundry at your convenience. Airbnb is an option or simple search for self-catering or holiday home in the town you’d like to stay.
We once rented a little flat in Ramelton, County Donegal with a washer and dryer. I thought we would wash all of our clothes and toss them in the dryer before we went to bed anticipating they would be dry in the morning.
The washer wasn’t big enough to fit all our clothes in one load. Then the dryer took forever. Joe, the wonderful husband that he is, stayed up late, switched the clothes, and ran a couple extra dry cycles (he also ate all our snacks while waiting).
Self-catering laundry tips:
- Pack a travel clothesline if you know you’ll be washing and drying a lot.
- Bring or plan to purchase laundry detergent in Ireland (not every unit supplies laundry soap).
- Laundry soap in Ireland is often scented. If you are sensitive, bring your own.
- Get a quick tutorial on how to run the washer and dryer when you get checked in.
Launderettes in Ireland:
When you’re staying at B&Bs doing your own is not an option, but launderettes are widely available. They allow you to drop off your dirty clothes in the morning and pick them up clean, dried and (semi) folded in the afternoon.
Larger towns usually offer at least one launderette (think Killarney, Westport or Wicklow). I typically look online in advance to find a few along my route.
However, this is my favorite tip for doing laundry in Ireland: Ask your B&B host where the nearest launderette is. They may offer to do it for you for a small fee. (They might not, but you’d be surprised how many do!).
- Bring along a collapsible duffle bag to stuff your dirty (and then clean) laundry into.
- Be careful of their very hot industrial dryers. Don’t have anything dried that is too delicate.
- Laundry is washed and dried by the pound so if you want to save some money, leave the heavy stuff for home.
Large self-service laundromats aren’t nearly as common as launderettes. However, there are large, almost industrial-size, washers and dryers set up at many petrol (gas) stations across Ireland. The most common brand is Revolution. You can search their site for the nearest one to you. T
For me, this is the last choice option–who really wants to wait around for their laundry to dry? But in a pinch, it could be a good option.
Self-service Laundry tips:
- Be sure the unit you throw your clothes into is clean. I have heard of locals using them for farm clothing, horse blankets, etc.
Hotel Laundry in Ireland:
If you are staying in a hotel, ask the front desk about laundry services. You’ll likely be able to leave your dirty clothes in your room in the morning. Housekeeping will whisk them away to be magically cleaned and folded upon your return in the evening.
While staying at Rosleague Manor in County Galway, we left our clothes literally in a pile at the end of our bed (per their instructions). When we came back from an afternoon of walking Diamond Hill (a lovely walk by the way), our clothes were washed, dried, and folded on our bed ready to be put in our suitcases for the remainder of our trip.
Hotel Laundry Tips:
- Ask about the turnaround time on their laundry service when you arrive so that you can be sure you have enough time to send them off and have them returned to you before you leave.
Packing in Ireland:
There is an old travel adage that says pack half as much as you think you need and bring twice as much money. :-) Knowing how to do laundry in Ireland certainly helps me feel like I can take a little less (and, hey, the less you pack, the more room you have for souvenirs on the way home).
Grab my Ultimate Ireland Packing List for what to pack and do before you leave on your grand adventure.