Tag Archives: Dublin

Dublin Taxis

23 Mar

One of the first things I noticed when I came to Dublin back in January were the abundance of taxis. I’ve never lived in a large city before, so I assumed it was fairly normal. Now that I’ve traveled around Europe, this is not the case. The number of taxis in Dublin is astronomical. A quick Google search on the topic brought up an article from 2008 which states that Dublin, at the time, had almost the exact same amount of taxis as New York City, a little over 12,000, “but with only a fraction of the population to support business.”

This abundance of taxis causes trouble for the drivers themselves, though, which I won’t delve into.  The Irish Examiner has multiple articles on this subject if you’re interested [x].  The abundance of taxis, however, is really helpful for those living in Dublin, especially when the weather is less than ideal or if you’re heading home from a pub or club after drinking maybe a bit too much!

The base price of a taxi starts at €4.10 for standard (8am – 8pm) and on Tariff A, runs at €1.03 per km or €0.36 per minute [x]. Each extra passenger also incurs a charge of €1 per passenger. There are currently 110 taxi ranks in service 24 hours a day, and can be found on O’Connell street by Savoy Cinema, Grafton Street Lower, and Foster Place. You can find a full list on the Dublin City website.

There are multiple taxi companies operating in Dublin, including Hailo, 820 Cabs, Global Taxis, National Radio Cabs, and Blue Cabs. There are a number of ways to get a taxi: call, use a mobile app, hail one on the street, or most of these companies allow you to book a taxi online as well!

I’ve never had a bad experience with a taxi here, but there have been a couple horror stories in the news.

Helpful tips:

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Before getting into a taxi, ensure that there is a blue and green taxi sticker on the side of the door, as well as the typical taxi banner across the top of the vehicle. These are required by the state.

Sit in the backseat of the taxi.

When you enter the taxi, make sure that a taxi driver license is displayed prominently on the dashboard.

Record the driver’s name and make a call (real or fake) saying that you’ll be home soon and are in a taxi driven by [the driver’s name].

If you feel unsafe at any time, simply ask for the driver to drop you off where you are, pay your fare, and exit the taxi.

[x] [x]

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Kilmainham Gaol

23 Mar

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Kilmainham Gaol is a very old, historic jail opened it’s doors in 1796 in Dublin, Ireland. It was expanded upon multiple times in it’s history to accommodate for more prisoners and eventually closed it’s doors following the release of it’s last prisoner in 1924. A grassroots movement to restore the jail began in the 1960s following failed attempts to get a restoration process started. Kilmainham now serves as a heritage historical site that you can enter and tour, and also includes a museum.

The conditions of the jail were harsh. The jail itself has been constructed of limestone, a porous stone, making the jail damp and musty as it constantly rained in Ireland, even back then. For the first 50 years, there was no glass in the windows and no lighting besides a small candle that each prisoners was allotted every two weeks. The diet of most prisoners consisted of break, milk, oatmeal, and soup. Men, women, and children were all thrown into the same cells, sometimes up to 5 prisoners per tiny cell [source].

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Within it’s 128 years of operating as a prison, Kilmainham held some of Ireland’s most notable ‘criminals’ from various rebellions throughout Ireland’s history. In 1803, Kilmainham held Robert Emmet, the leader of the 1803 rebellion (against British rule). Emmet, who was sentenced to death after being charged with high treason, delivered the famous Speech from the DockAround the same time Emmet was held at the jail, his ‘housekeeper‘ and co-conspirator, Anne Devlin, was detained as well. However, she was kept in Kilmainham until 1805. During the two years of her imprisonment, she was mentally tortured and held in poor conditions. The goal of her absolute misery was to gather her intelligence about the uprising and the names of those who planned and attempted to execute it. Anne never broke, but passed away in 1851 in absolute poverty. Other notable prisoners included Charles Parnell (1881), Patrick Pearse (1916), Èamon de Valera (1916), James Connolly (1916), and Joseph Plunkett (1916).

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My visit to Kilmainham was on a rainy, chilly day, fitting the mood surrounding the jail. Walking into the first hallway gave me chills. I peered into the cells through the holes in the doors and saw the tiny cells where so many Irish citizens spent their time. The mere fact that I was standing in such a historic place in Ireland’s history where important political prisoners were held and some, executed was enough to make me take a step back and say a quick prayer for lives tortured and lost.

The prison itself is well-preserved and restored in some areas. Graffiti from prisoners still litters the doors and walls throughout the prison. It was an informative and eye-opening experience.

 

Other sources: [1], [2], [3]