James Claffey, his wife Maureen and their daughter Maisie, at their home in Carpinteria, California: “One of my daughter Maisie’s classmates lost her half-brother in the shootings.”

As the state battles raging wildfires, Irish people living there describe the scene

Immigration reform campaigners say they are “cautiously optimistic” about securing a new visa deal between Ireland and the US. Photograph: iStock

A ‘landmark deal’ with US could allow thousands of Irish live and work there

Under a proposed visa deal, Irish citizens would be able to apply for the portion of two-year E3 visas not taken up by Australian citizens, which could amount to around 5,000 visas a year.

Talk of a new visa deal between Ireland and US gives many hope, but some readers have reservations

Photograph: Erin Schaff/The New York Times

Midterm elections: Readers in the US share their opinions as America goes to the polls

President incumbent Michael D Higgins received 77 per cent of the first preference ‘virtual votes’ in an Irish Times Abroad online poll of Irish people living overseas this week. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Irish Times Abroad ‘virtual vote’ shows 90% for Yes in blasphemy referendum

Morgan Fagg, Madrid: ‘I’m taking a day off work, spending €123 on Ryanair flights, €80 on Hertz rental, and all the additional costs of travelling home, but keeping the poet in my opinion, is priceless.’

Time limits, expense and apathy keep Irish abroad away from presidential election and referendum

Are you coming #hometovote this week?

Or are you living away, frustrated that you can’t have a say? We want to hear from you

Senator Billy Lawless: ‘Emigrants have always been in forefront in the fight for equality and democracy in Ireland and now it is our time. We have been denied the vote for far too long.’ Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons / The Irish Times

Senator Billy Lawless calls on Irish abroad to rally ahead of emigrant vote referendum in 2019

Irish Times Abroad has built a bespoke ‘virtual voting tool’ to offer its disenfranchised readers living overseas a say in elections and referendums.

Irish Times Abroad is conducting a ‘virtual vote’ for emigrants. Here’s how to participate

Patrick Conway: ‘I didn’t have a lick of Korean before I landed here in March 2007.’

Learning new languages has opened up a world of opportunity for these Irish abroad

‘A very pleasant female Garda advised me to run on a treadmill instead, saying “You’re asking for trouble if you run in the city”. I haven’t run in the city since.’ Photograph: iStock/Getty Images

Is harassment of female runners ‘endemic’? Readers share their experiences

Seamus Walsh with his family in Melbourne: ‘For 34 hours of care per fortnight we pay AUD$377 which is subsidised 50 per cent by the government, so we are out of pocket AUD$188 (€116 euro) or about $5.50 per hour.’

Readers overseas on €1 afterschool care in Belgium, to 50% subsidies in Australia

‘I know so many talented, hard working, smart women for whom high mortgages and long commutes have meant that childcare costs were the straw that broke the camel’s back, and they have decided to stay at home.’ Photograph: iStock/Getty Images

Readers respond to report showing Irish women are being shut out of the workplace

The buzz is back on Grafton Street. Photograph: Jason Alden/Bloomberg via Getty Images

For the first time in a decade, more Irish are returning from abroad than are emigrating

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: the people behind the immigration  figures he has welcomed face real problems of finance, career progress and accommodation. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Good news on returning Irish emigrants overshadowed by obstacles they encounter

Emigration is also at its lowest since 2008. Photograph: Cathal McNaughton/Reuters

Almost 50,000 people with a third-level qualification arrived last year

Stephen Cloak emigrated to Brazil for the second time, three months after his daughter was born in Dublin.

The number of people moving to Ireland is rising, but the experience is not easy for all

Net inward migration among non-Irish nationals remained strong, increasing from 23,200 in 2017 to 33,900 in 2018.

Immigration overall rises by 6.7% with 90,300 people moving to Ireland last year

The Australian government’s medium and long-term skilled occupation list still contains 176 occupations eligible for four-year temporary and permanent residence visas, including secondary teachers, the majority of trades, IT, health and engineering. Photograph: iStock

Visa rules have tightened but opportunities still good for skilled Irish workers

Have you moved to or from Ireland since April 2017? Photograph: iStock

Whether you’ve emigrated or immigrated since 2017, we want to hear from you

Tax-free salaries are a huge draw, and there’s plenty of work from teaching to construction

Darren Johnston: ‘Through hard work and determination, I was promoted a few times and I’m now a commercial producerwith my own show on Cork’s 96FM.’

Don’t despair if you get ‘disappointing’ results - there are alternative options

Vienna, Austria - August 7, 2014: A large group of people take a rest in the terrace of a cafe in downtown Vienna.

Cheap transport, excellent healthcare and a vibrant cultural scene, say Irish people living there

Méabh Ní Drisceoil, third secretary in the Irish embassy in Hungary,  meeting president of Hungary János Áder.

Interested in representing Ireland abroad? The next generation of diplomats are being recruited

John Tecuceanu: ‘It definitely has been harder in the past three years.’ Photo Credit: Bree Gaudette

Readers respond to singer David Kitt who said he is quitting Ireland because he can’t afford to live here

Eamonn Dunne: ‘My wife Jeziel is a Filipina who I met on one of my first trips, and we have twin boys Cian and Zach who will turn two in September.’

From Tokyo to Penang, readers share their stories and experiences of emigrating to Asia

Just over one-third of the people  surveyed by the Department of Foreign Affairs about living in Asia had children currently residing with them. Photograph: St Patrick’s Day Parade, Shanghai

Survey reveals a very highly educated workforce still well-connected to Ireland

Tempted by a move to New Zealand? Our newly updated destination guide has everything you need to know. Photograph: iStock/Getty Images

Top stories on Irish Times Abroad this week

Temperate climate and lush scenery make it an attractive alternative to Australia

The Buddhafield festival in Devon has a group of Irish emigrants at the helm.

The top stories of the week on Irish Times Abroad

 Ciarán Cannon, Minister of State for Diaspora: ‘As it moves from generation to generation that sense of Irishness begins to become diluted. If we allow that to happen, then we have a problem.’  Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Minister of State for Diaspora Ciarán Cannon believes emigrants should be let vote in general elections

Alex Flamme: ‘I will not be taking a refund if the strike does go ahead, I want to be re-routed.’

Plans for holidays, weddings and family visits thrown into disarray by uncertainty

Jay O’Callaghan (right) with his husband, Aaron O’Bryan, and their son, Jake, in Toronto.

Parents who have had children by surrogacy are put off returning because of a legal limbo

All the info you need on visas, jobs, schools, healthcare, insurance and more

Paula Barnes, Singapore: ‘The heat takes time to get used to.’

Readers in sunnier climes share advice on conserving water and keeping cool

BEFORE: Clarence Mangan Road

Our solution was to pay more for a house that didn’t need major work

All the info you need on visas, jobs, schools, healthcare, insurance and more

More than 300 Irish-trained doctors have obtained working visas for Australia in the past year. A new research project from the Royal College of Physicians in Ireland aims to find out why. Photograph: iStock

Emigrating doctors, Ed Sheeran at the London Irish Centre, and abortion in Argentina

A group of Irish artists in Berlin will host a new festival from June 22nd to 24th to explore what is ‘stuck in their craw’ about Ireland. Photograph: Andreas Meichsner/The New York Times

Top stories on Irish Times Abroad this week

“How much we paid for it in the first place can mean our mortgage repayments could be double or half those of the people next door.” Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Househunter: We’d rather not even think about that final sum ever again

 Dublin Airport on May 24th: voters were welcomed and cheered as they entered the arrivals lounge.  Photograph Nick Bradshaw

The #Hometovote movement has highlighted the issue for the second time in three years

 Crosscare Migrant Project claims inconsistent decisions by deciding officers means increasing numbers of returning Irish emigrants are being denied social welfare. Photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times

Irish abroad: Inconsistent decisions leading to poverty, homelessness, report finds

The Eighth Amendment  will be removed from the Irish Constitution after the electorate voted  66.4 per cent Yes to 33.6 per cent  No in a referendum on May 25th. Photograph: AFP

Irish Times Abroad ‘virtual vote’ shows 91.7% of citizens abroad would have voted Yes

Asked if they would vote in favour or against repealing the Eighth Amendment, 91.7 per cent of respondents to an Irish Times Abroad survey said they would vote Yes, while 8.3 per cent said they would vote No. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Irish Times Abroad 'virtual vote' shows high percentage for Yes among citizens abroad

Kim Caldwell: ‘Now, we need the same for women Northern Ireland.’

Few could come home to vote, so they’ve been watching from afar, full of emotion

Lucy Cooper from Cavan standing at a mural of Savita Halappanavar in Dublin on Friday. Photograph: Tom Honan/The Irish Times

We want to hear from readers living overseas who couldn’t have their say, or flew home to vote

Amy FitzGerald: ‘My wonderful husband Padraig surprised me on my birthday with flights home.’

Irish emigrants are beginning to make their way back to have their say in the referendum

Group of Irish people living in Chicago gathering to call for repeal of the Eighth Amendment. Photograph: Áine Collins

Top tweets, epic journeys, and frustration among those watching referendum from afar

If you are travelling home to vote, what are your plans? Why do you think this issue is worth coming back to vote on?

We want to hear from readers overseas ahead of the Eighth Amendment referendum

Suzanne Conway writes about London Irish United for Life which is organising the #HometoVoteNo campaign.

Round-up of the top stories from Irish Times Abroad this week

The women of Gaza get their circus skills on, thanks to Irish woman Jenny Higgins who shared her story with Irish Times Abroad this week. Photograph: Mohammed Al Baba

Top stories this week from Irish Times Abroad

After 18 months, 100 viewings Ciara Kenny has found a house. Stock photograph: iStock

Househunter diary: After 18 months, 100 viewings and countless bids, the deposit is paid and the closing date set

Dead end? Every old house has its secrets, and there is often a likelihood someone may have died there.

The house was gorgeous but it would be hard not to think of the violent death every time I went upstairs

£1 for a house: some of the Liverpool housebuyers. Photograph: Channel 4

House Hunter: A Liverpool-style houses for £1 scheme could fill Ireland’s 250,000 empty homes

The Purdue “All American” Marching Band from Indiana during their first visit to Ireland. The band, featuring 346 performers and world’s biggest drum, returns this year to march in the St Patrick’s Day parade for the second time. Photograph: Adrian Sadlier

It can cost a marching band $500K to come to Ireland for the St Patrick’s Day parade

Laura Colleran  and her family. “After four years in Galway we are still in a state of transition, paying ridiculously high prices for car insurance and little advancement up the property ladder”

Irish abroad face so many barriers to coming home they often stay where they are

Photographer Rich Gilligan: ‘For years I sat on a bus travelling in and out of Blanchardstown looking at these magazines, thinking wouldn’t it be amazing to do that, imagine living in New York... I feel really lucky, but in another way, you make your own luck.’

Donal Dineen’s ‘Pathways’ highlights success of 10 very different creatives living abroad

The  report contains 30 recommendations on seven key topics affecting returning Irish emigrants. Photograph: iStock

1,188 emigrants shared their opinions and experiences in new survey

Don’t forget to tell us a little about yourself - where you were living abroad, for how long, your occupation, when you returned and to what county and with who.

Recently returned to Ireland? We want to hear about the highs and lows

Snow plough clearing the   N11 at the Glen of the Downs on Friday. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Readers pay tribute to the people who helped them and others through the storm

US President Donald Trump receives a traditional bowl of shamrocks from then taoiseach  Enda Kenny in 2017. Photograph: SAul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

US president declares March 2018 Irish-American Heritage Month

Emigrants returning to Ireland from a number of countries including the US currently have to go through the full driver learning process, which includes the driver theory test, a mandatory 12 Essential Driver Training (EDT) lessons, and the driving test. Photograph: iStock

Drivers with foreign licences will have to sit 6 instead of 12 lessons before test

From healthcare and human resources to construction, many workers have trouble getting their overseas qualifications recognised in Ireland. Photograph: iStock

Three years after the Government identified this as an issue, little has been done

Photograph: iStock/Getty Images

Buyer’s agent Breffnie O’Kelly says it should only take three months to buy a home

Louise Ivory and her husband Matthew Hartwig: ‘If you love someone that much you would do anything, you would cross many rivers and many oceans.’

Louise Ivory moved across the world to marry a man she started a virtual gang with

Members of the London Irish Abortion Rights Campaign at the International Women’s Day march in 2017. Photograph: John Wells

Campaigners warn about dangers of ineligible voting in abortion referendum

Members of the London Irish Abortion Rights Campaign demonstrating in London.

New campaign launched urging eligible voters to travel from abroad to cast their ballots

David Mulligan: ‘After a summer in the US, all I could think about was going back for good.’

Irish readers in the US share their stories of getting visas and green cards to stay

Kris Shekleton: ‘I am extremely disappointed and angered.’

‘Micheál has given the proverbial two fingers to the majority of my fellow members’

House prices rose in November by 11.6% year on year – down from 12.1% the previous month – according to the latest figures from the Central Statistics Office. Photograph: iStock/Getty Images

House Hunter: We were very naive starting out, and didn’t cop that the sums appearing on the property price register were for hous(...)

‘I am a very experienced ward nurse with many skills to offer, but I feel rejected by my own country.’

Emigrant nurses share their experiences of trying to return to Ireland to work

Over the past decade, 356,600 Irish-born people have emigrated. Photograph: iStock

The Crash – 10 years on: The downturn sparked a wave of emigration. How did they fare in their new lives? And will they return?

A giant winter ‘bomb cyclone’ walloped the US east coast on Thursday with freezing cold and heavy snow, forcing thousands of flight cancellations and widespread school closures. Photograph: Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images

Readers from New York to Virginia share their experiences of the storm

John Kennedy: ‘ I’ve no desire to come home while the housing and healthcare situations are so bad.’ Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Readers who came home from abroad for Christmas share their thoughts on Ireland

Terrorist attacks and natural disasters also prominent topics with readers overseas

Readers on their least-treasured gifts, from psoriasis shampoo to electric tin openers

Brenna Cahill: ‘The thermometer just hit 34 degrees Celsius (it’s 11am). I have never experienced a December like this.’

Friends become family for the Irish celebrating Christmas abroad

Geraldine Pender: “Our move back to Ireland has been bittersweet. We are loving being close to family and our old friends, the kids have settled well in school but we miss Oman.”

More Irish emigrants are moving home. They tell us how they’ve found it

The results of the Irish project could be used to improve the diagnosis of genetic diseases, particularly illnesses that are prevalent among  people with Irish ancestry, including multiple sclerosis, cystic fibrosis and coeliac disease.

Research finds genetic evidence of Viking settlement for the first time

Sonja Heppner: ‘Any cancellations or major delays would take away from much anticipated time to catch up with family and friends in Germany.’

Irish Times readers have shared their dismay and anxiety over the planned strike on December 20th

Peter Coghlan: ‘Leave-supporting politicians and their pliant media outlets are looking for scapegoats and the Irish are in the firing line just now.’

Readers in London and around the country respond to this week’s Border talks

More than 80 journalists gathered at the Project Arts Centre in Dublin on Wednesday to discuss gender imbalance, discrimination and harassment in the media industry in Ireland.

#Waking the Media: 80 journalists talk discrimination, underrepresentation and abuse

We were so close to going ‘sale agreed’ - then they offered more and bagged it.

Househunter Diary: We resisted the urge to knock them down as they left

Gavin Lawlor, who has been living in Manama for 16 years, with his wife Dona and their three sons Calum, Oisín and Aidan-Fionn.

Two Irish residents tell us why they love living in the city that topped a recent survey

Craig McMahon (grey cardigan) with his brother Alan (taking the pic), his partner Peter (white jacket) and my partner Simone (black top). ‘After today’s results we’ve set dates for our weddings within a week of each other.’

Readers share their stories as the country they call home says yes to marriage equality

Unless there is ‘some unexpected significant shock or a substantial increase in housing supply’, prices will continue to climb, the ESRI says. Photograph: iStock/Getty Images

Readers share their experiences of house hunting in today’s market

Photograph: Tom Brenner/The New York Times

Irish readers in the US on how the country has changed for them this year

Ireland is one of 33 countries worldwide that has a reciprocal agreement with Canada to allow young people to live and work there. Photograph: iStock

International Experience Canada 2018 programme is open for 18-35-year-olds

Marlene Kairouz has apologised for her “poor choice of words”

Marlene Kairouz apologised for comments linking Irish accents to travelling conmen

Photograph: iStock

Househunter: With so little supply, our Saturdays are our own now - and we don’t like it

Peer to peer support will be offered to 48 successful applicants. Photograph: iStock

Mentoring programme aims to assist returning emigrants set up business in Ireland

Katie Kiernan with her partner Shane and son Nathan in Canada: 'I knew if we stayed in Ireland, we would struggle for the rest of our lives.'

More Irish people emigrated this year than in 2010. Why? We asked them

Liam Neeson has ‘helped to raise Ireland’s profile and awareness of Ireland and Irish artists around the world’.

Ten Irish people will be honoured by President for outstanding work abroad

Almost 127,000 Irish emigrants have moved back to live in Ireland over the past five years. Photograph: iStock/Getty Images

Galway event is inviting contributions and will be live streamed on Facebook

‘Spending a summer’s evening with friends in their small but pretty city garden got us thinking about the house again.’ Photograph: Getty

Diary of a househunter: At first we were top bidders. But another bid came in. Then another

Friends and family wait to welcome home loved ones at Dublin Airport. A total of 27,400 Irish people came home in year to April 2017 according to the CSO. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

CSO estimate of Irish coming home between 2012 and 2016 was out by more than 64%

Patricia Noonan with her husband Philip, and sons Shay (7) and PJ (11)

Patricia Noonan and her family returned to Cork after five years in Australia

Ireland welcomed home  27,400 Irish emigrants who returned to live here from abroad in the 12 months to April 2017.

Number of immigrants highest since 2008, but Irish still leaving in large numbers

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