Irish accents may be used in different kinds of content. They are particularly useful, evidently, when crafting material to be used in Ireland: a radio commercial to be transmitted in major Irish cities, an audio ad targeted at Irish listeners, a corporate video that will be seen by Irish employees, amongst other examples.

We will examine Irish accents in general. Localizing material does not end with accents though. We will look at the tips and tricks of successful localization as well. Finally, we will look at where to find voice talent who may provide Irish accents for our content.

But if you prefer to watch a video instead, click here:



Ireland, as we know, is an island in the North Atlantic. It is divided into the Republic of Ireland, an independent country, and Northern Ireland, a part of the United Kingdom. There are about 4.8 million people in the Republic of Ireland and around 1.8 million in Northern Ireland.

The Republic of Ireland is particularly prosperous. It has a GDP of around 400 billion Euros. Although the country as a whole has an impressive economy, the Dublin Region has the greatest wealth. The GDP in the Dublin region alone hovers at around 100 billion Euros. The Dublin GDP per capita is also high, at over 78,000 Euros.

Irish Accents and Languages

English became commonplace in Ireland since the late 18th century, displacing Irish. When we talk about accents, naturally, we will refer to English accents in Ireland.

Irish accents may be divided into three large categories: East Coast (Dublin in particular), South-Western and Northern. It is important to understand that these are basic categorizations; some people have referred to Ireland as the ‘land of one million accents’!

East Coast (Dublin)

Here we may find a range of urban accents. Irish accents in this area include ‘working class’ accent in Dublin. Some people point out that there are East Coast Irish accents which bear a resemblance to accents in some areas of the United States.

Some famous people who share this accent are Gabriel Byrne and Colin Farrell.


Running through County Cork all the way to County Mayo. These Irish accents feature a great influence of Gaelic pronunciation.

These accents feature what most people would think of when talking about Irish accents. Cillian Murphy is a famous speaker of this accent.


Scholars claim that these Irish accents have a lot of Scottish influence. This is because of the heavy presence of large plantations in the area in the past.

irish accents for translating


This is an Irish province with counties in the United Kingdom (Northern Ireland) and some counties in the Republic of Ireland. It is a Northern accent as well but it is important to account for the geopolitical division.

The accent in Northern Ireland (United Kingdom) has some specific characteristics. This accent was influenced by Ulster Irish and Scots language, brought by Scottish settlers.

As with other Irish accents, there are important subdivisions to take into account. Academics point out that it includes Mid-Ulster English, South Ulster English and Ulster Scots.

Some famous speakers of Ulster accent include actor Liam Neeson.

Supraregional Irish Accent

Some commentators have noted the emergence of a certain supraregional accent in Ireland. Such a supraregional accent is similar to the Dublin accent. Some have decried such attempts at a supraregional accent.

Interestingly, a certain Americanized accent seems to be taking hold in the newer generations, as pointed out by observers.

Irish Accents and Localization

Irish accents are often needed in localization. We will take a look at what localization is and what this means in the case of Irish accents.

What is Localization?

Localization is basically making content bound to the characteristics of a certain place. If we need audio content for a country in particular, it is best to use their own accent, for instance. The degree of localization usually depends on the specific content being created.

Degree of Localization

Sometimes, localization may demand using specific jargon and slang which is local to the area. Such is the case of advertising campaigns geared for a young audience. In this case, it may be necessary to write copy which includes slang used by youngsters and then cast local talent who speak in the same accent as the target demographic.

In other cases, the degree of localization may be less pronounced. Consider an audio recording in a subway system. Such recording may come in a standard English accent, for instance. A change of audio may be deemed better for a local populace and thus it may be recorded again using, say, Irish accents. A change in the script, however, will not be necessary.

Using Irish Accents

There are several moments when Irish accents may be required. Consider the following scenarios:

  1. A Chinese company needs to craft radio commercials for the population living in major cities in Ireland.
  2. A music company wishes to promote a new musician for audiences listening to audio platforms in Ireland.
  3. An American corporation needs to craft a corporate video to train their employees on health & safety in the workplace. The employees are all based in Ireland and the company wants a video that is both instructional and entertaining.

The scenarios described are quite typical. Since they all incorporate an Irish audience, they are a good example of the need for localization. We will attempt to examine them more closely.


  1. The Chinese company in the first example would do well to use Irish accents in their radio commercials. Such commercials would play better and be more recognizable to a local audience. A radio commercial in English with another accent, may very well transmit the message, but may stick out amidst radio programming where Irish accents are natural and commonplace.
  2. Audio ads have the great advantage of being targeted to extremely specific demographics. In the case of this musician, his work may be advertised to a young audience in Ireland listening to music in major audio platforms. If the audio ad features Irish accents they may respond to it more readily.
  3. This corporate video poses a particular challenge. On the one hand, the corporation needs to transmit some information. Such a feat would not be difficult. Crafting a corporate video to inform of this or that is an easy task. The problem is that the company wants the video to be entertaining and appeal to their Irish employees. In this case, the use of voice over with Irish accents may be extremely useful.

Localize Fully – Beware of ‘Airbrushing’!

One great risk is providing localization which is merely ‘airbrushing’, so to speak. This means a localization which does not account for the particulars of the language but is mostly cosmetic.

In the earlier examples, an ‘airbrushed’ localization would mean, for instance:

  1. The radio commercial uses Irish accents but the copy for the commercial is poorly written. The copywriter does not understand the audience. Although it ‘sounds’ local, there is something foreign to the whole feel of the commercial.
  2. That same situation could happen in the audio ad by the musician: Good use of Irish accents but foreign-sounding ‘cookie-cutter’ copy which seems unfamiliar.
  3. The corporate video in particular, poses a challenge. Although good copy detailing health & safety and the use of Irish accents in the voice over may be enough, it may still miss something. This means that the script should aim to include references that the audience will find amusing. Working closely with the corporation itself, great copy could be written that (a) is able to speak to them specifically as employees of that corporation, using references and even in-jokes and (b) understands, at least somewhat, the Irish milieu in which they are working.

irish accents for language localization

Finding Irish Accents

Authentic or Imitation?

There are wildly talented people who are able to imitate accents. Many voice artists are able to do just that. It is better, however, to look for native talent who are able to provide native Irish accents. Only if such talent is impossible to find, a talented imitator may be used.

The idea behind this is simply safety. Native talent will guarantee correct voice over work, without problems which may surface later. Discerning native audiences are quick to find the flaws in an imitation.


The first instinct when looking for Irish accents is to look to Ireland itself. This, obviously, is not very practical. Companies and customers based around the world may not have the resources, nor the time, to carry out such a search.

Another possibility is to look for talent locally. This is feasible in places with a high Irish population (both newly immigrated or descendants of Irish immigrants) such as areas of the United States.

Online Hubs

The best alternative is probably to look for Irish accents online. Bunny Studio, for one, is able to find voice talent who have native Irish accents, or, if need be, who can imitate such an accent.

Moreover, this online hub is able to use these Irish accents and craft them into particular products or content for an Irish audience. Bunny Studio is well equipped to take care of the examples we examined throughout this article: radio commercials, audio ads, corporate video scripts and copywriting in general.

In a Nutshell

Irish accents are useful when crafting material to be used in Ireland itself.

Localizing material does not end with accents. Successful localization must include great writing (such as slang or jargon) and cultural awareness.

One great risk is providing localization which is only ‘airbrushing’. This is a localization which does not account for the particulars of the language but is simply cosmetic. This includes lousy copy and little understanding of the culture.

Many voice artists are able to imitate Irish accents. It is better, however, to look for native talent who are able to provide native Irish accents.

The first instinct when looking for Irish accents is to look to Ireland itself. This, obviously, may be difficult. The best alternative is probably to look for Irish accents online. Bunny Studio, for one, is able to find voice talent with native Irish accents and can craft content from start to finish.