How Do You ‘Do Dublin’?
Banter Galore with Do Dublin Rebrand
Dublin Bus has been ‘doing Dublin’ bus tours across the capital since 1988 through its Dublin Sightseeing City & Coastal Tours (the green bus!). It is Dublin’s original, authentic bus tour and this year it’s shaking things up by rebranding to DoDublin. The new brand is contemporary, fresh and strong with a colour palette, product family and bus livery that will cut through the brand noise created by other operators and attract visitors.
The drivers are Dublin natives, Fáilte Ireland trained and know every nook and cranny, anecdote and scéal across the streets broad and narrow of our fair city. Racking up almost 250,000 miles every year these guys are the best tour guides in the country. Priding themselves on having the ‘banter’ with Irish and international tourists alike, the 63 DoDublin drivers were surveyed as part of the rebrand exercise to understand a little more about them and the 2.5 million commercial customers they show our capital city to every year.
Although there have been no marriage proposals on their buses, it seems Dublin’s fair city is where people like to remain…… eternally! A Dublin Bus driver for 29 years, Martin Connolly said; “I’ve had the remains of three lovers of Dublin City on my bus. Their families scatter their ashes in their favourite spots across the city – the River Liffey is the most popular!” The old Irish sod is another favourite as tourists visiting the Phoenix Park scoop up some of the earth to scatter on the graves of loved ones back home (mostly Americans). It seems there’s a desire for the famous Dublin wit to travel too. One driver had his voice recorded by an Irish man living in Argentina so they could get a better understanding of what ‘craic’ means.
Questions around where to eat and where to drink are most important to tourists visiting Dublin. The legend of the little people is alive and well as many of the drivers said they are still asked where to find a real life leprechaun and also Kelly’s Book (the Book of Kells).
They’ve spent years getting to know the city inside and out enabling DoDublin to create experiences for customers that give a true understanding of the character of Dublin, its people, its stories, its history and its heritage. DoDublin drivers are always adapting to make sure they know what’s going on in the city and have interesting stories to tell, such as:
• Napoleon’s toothbrush, snuff box and lancet are in the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland;
• How Dublin lost track of time; when Dublin Mean Time was in place until 1916 and we were over 25 minutes ahead of GMT in London;
• Dublin Zoo used to be home to the first MGM studio lion;
• The Irish harp faces to the left on government buildings but to the right on Guinness products;
• How body snatchers robbed boxer Dan Donnelly’s grave in Bully’s Acre graveyard and years later his arm ended up in the Hideout, a pub in Kilcullen.
Having visited every tourist spot of interest several times, some of DoDublin drivers’ favourite attractions include:
• Kilmainham Gaol
• Guinness Storehouse
• St. Patrick’s Cathedral
• Jameson Distillery
• The Little Museum of Dublin
Tours are available in 10 languages; Irish, English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Polish, Russian, Chinese and Japanese. Customers come from all over the world but the biggest talkers are Americans, closely followed by UK and then Canada. After being piloted in 2016, this year also sees the introduction of live German tours conducted by native speakers living in Dublin. This is in response to increased demand from inbound travellers from Germany.
DoDublin drivers are a busy bunch. Between The Hop On Hop Off Tour, Coastal Tours, Ghostbus Tour and The 1916: Beyond Barricades Tour they travel 275,000 miles across the city and county each year. They’re an honest lot too as one driver found a bag with €3,500 left on his bus! It was duly returned to a very relieved tourist while he was visiting Trinity College.
For further information on tickets and tour times visit www.dodublin.ie. Follow DoDublin on Twitter @dodublintours, Instagram @dodublintours and Facebook.