You in Europe

As an Irish citizen, you are a citizen of the European Union. 

Citizens of EU member states are automatically citizens of the European Union. This means that you can move freely around the countries of the EU, and have the right to live in those other countries if you fulfil certain conditions. More information

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European Youth Portal

The European Youth Portal is a starting point for all your questions. A gateway to citizenship and mobility for young people in Europe, the European Youth Portal offers European and national information of interest to young people who are living, learning and working in Europe.

The portal allows young people to have their questions answered – through the Eurodesk Network. The information in this portal is arranged by subject: studying, working, volunteering, etc.

More information

What is the European Union?

The European Union is a unique partnership between 27 European countries, known as Member States, or EU countries. Together they cover much of the European continent.

The EU is home to around 447 million people, which is around 6% of the world’s population. Citizens of the EU countries are also EU citizens.

More information

Your Rights

The European Commission has provided detailed guides on your rights as an EU citizen when living in another EU country (plus the EEA countries). More information: click on the country of your choice and select your language of preference. 

Your rights include:

  • Right of movement – more information
  • Social Protection – more information
  • Healthcare and family benefits – more information
  • Working – more information
  • Consumer Rights – Advice on your consumer rights in the European Union and assistance with cross-border complaints, including travel, shopping, car rental, holidays, accommodation, roaming – more information

European Ombudsman – deals with any issues or complaints against EU institutions or bodies.

How To Get Involved

1. Make your voice heard through EU Youth Dialogue

The EU Youth Dialogue (previously called the Structured Dialogue) is a way of making the voices of young people heard in European policy-making processes. The aim is to create a dialogue between young people and youth organisations with policy- and decision-makers, as well as experts, researchers and other members of civil society. In Ireland, the EU Youth Dialogue is delivered by NYCI through the Young Voices programme.

2. Vote in the European Elections

Every five years, EU citizens choose who represents them in the European Parliament, the directly elected institution that defends their interests in the EU decision-making process. The next European elections will take place in May 2024. More information

Every Irish citizen and every resident citizen of another EU Member State who is aged 18 years or over and whose name appears on the register of electors is entitled to vote. Are you registered to vote? Check the register online here.

3. Take Part in an EU programme

Check the Eurodesk Opportunity Finder to find out about current opportunities and programmes for young people.

Erasmus+  is an EU programme for education, training, youth and sport.

4. Familiarise yourself with European Policies

Youth Wiki  – Europe encyclopedia of National Youth Policies. It reports complex policy initiatives in accessible, plain English. Each policy area is subdivided into topics. The platform can be navigated with ease and ensures you find the information you need in the youth field. More information

5. European Youth Forum

European Youth Forum – The vision of the European Youth Forum is to be the voice of young people in Europe, where young people are equal citizens and are encouraged and supported to achieve their fullest potential as global citizens.


European Institutions


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