China vs Ireland: Which is the Better Study-Abroad Destination in 2024?

9 minute read
China vs Ireland

Students worldwide choose China and Ireland as their study-abroad destinations due to their high standards of education, great quality of life, and extensive employment opportunities. If you need clarification about whether you should study in China or study in Ireland, then you are at the right place. Here, we will compare these two excellent nations and conclude which one is a better choice. Leave your all concerns aside as we are about to settle the debate of China vs Ireland once and for all. We will compare these countries based on various aspects and award +2 points to the country which is better in a particular aspect. We will finally compute the total scores and the country with the highest score will be deemed a better study-abroad destination. 

Parameters ChinaIreland
Area9.597 Million KM²84,421 KM²
CurrencyChinese Yuan (¥)Euro (€)
Total Higher Education Providers3,01222
Total Indian Students Studying23,0004,000
Average Cost of Living¥4,047.3€1,000 – €1,500 Per Month
Average Cost of Studying¥18,249 – ¥72,996 Per Year€12,000 Per Annum
Popular Job SectorsTechnology, Accountancy and Finance, Teaching, Medicine, Marketing, and ManufacturingTechnology, Accounting and Finance, Construction, Creative Design, Web Development, Nursing, and Business Skills. 
Permitted Part-Time Working Hours24 Hours Per Week Up To 40 Hours Per Week During Holidays and 20 hours Per Week During the School Year

Top-Ranked Universities: China vs Ireland

Let’s compare China and Ireland based on their universities. In this round, the country with the highest-ranked universities will be granted +2 points. So, let’s begin!

Universities in China

Here are some of the top-ranked universities in China:

Top Universities in ChinaQS World University Rankings 2024Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2024
Peking University1714
Tsinghua University2512
Zhejiang University4455
Fudan University5044
Shanghai Jiao Tong University5143
University of Science and Technology13757
Nanjing University14173
Wuhan University194164
Tongji University216185
Harbin Institute of Technology256168

Universities in Ireland

The table below shows a list of the best universities in Ireland:

Top Universities in the Ireland QS World University Rankings 2024Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2024
Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin81134
University College Dublin171201–250
University of Galway289301–350
University College Cork292301–350
Dublin City University436401–500
University of Limerick426401–500
Maynooth University801-850401–500

Which Country is Better? 

It is apparent from the above tables that universities in China have a higher global rank than the universities in Ireland. Hence, we will grant +2 points to China in this round of China vs Ireland. 

Also Read: Top Universities in China

Admission Requirements

In this section, we will look at the admission criteria in the universities in China and Ireland. The country with the easiest admission requirements will be given +2 points. 

Admission Requirements For China

You have to provide these listed documents to become eligible to gain admission into a university in China: 

  • Passport copy
  • A photo (passport size)
  • Graduation certificate (s)
  • Physical examination form- medical results
  • Official transcripts
  • 2 recommendation letters (should be written and signed by your teachers/professors and contain their contact details)
  • Personal statement
  • Bank statement

Admission Requirements For Ireland

The admission criteria for receiving admission to Irish universities are as follows: 

  • The students are required to possess a current passport. 
  • Moreover, they must score a minimum IELTS score of 6.0, a PTE score of 63 (PG), a TOEFL iBT score of 90, a PTE score of 36 (UG), and a Cambridge ESOL score of C1 or C2.
  • Moreover, the applicants must have a medical insurance policy of a minimum value of €25,000
  • Proof of sufficient funds is also required to be considered for admission at an Ireland university. 
  • You need to submit some necessary documents, such as: 
    • A letter from a college confirming your acceptance
    • A receipt as verification of registration and payment of tuition fees
    • Two passport pictures
    • Additional university-specific requirements

Which Country is Better?

The above comparison implies that admission criteria are simpler in China than in Ireland. Henceforth, we will give +2 points to China in this round of China vs Ireland. 

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees are also a major factor one should consider while choosing a study destination. So, in this section, we will compare China and Ireland based on their tuition costs. The one with the lower fees will be deemed the winner in this round. 

Tuition Fees in China

As per the websites of the universities in China, the average yearly tuition costs in the country are as follows: 

Study Program Average Annual Tuition Fee
Undergraduate ¥15,000 to ¥60,000 
Postgraduate¥18,000 to ¥90,000 
Doctoral¥20,000 to ¥50,000 

Tuition Fees in Ireland

The average annual tuition fees in Ireland as per the website of the universities in the country are shown in the table below: 

Study Program Average Annual Tuition Fee
Undergraduate €9,000 to €26,000
Postgraduate€9,000 to €35,000
Doctoral€9,000 to €40,000

Which Country is Better?

The above comparison implies that universities in China charge lower tuition fees than in Ireland. As a result, China will be granted +2 points in this round of China vs Ireland as well. 

Living Expenses

The cost of living is one of the major concerns for a student when moving to a different nation So, in this section, we will unveil the living expenses in China and New Zealand. 

Cost of Living in China

The living expenses as per Numbeo are provided in the table below: 

Monthly Rent ¥2,191.31 – ¥7,900.84
Average Apartment Price (Price per Square Metre)¥33,742.16 – ¥58,250.61
Average Cost of an Inexpensive Restaurant Meal ¥25
Average Transportation Cost (Monthly)¥200
Average Cost of Utility (Monthly)¥584.12

Cost of Living in Ireland

The cost of living in Ireland as per Numbeo is as follows:

Monthly Rent €1,254.49 – €2,480.65 
Average Apartment Price (Price per Square Metre)€3,532.03 – €4,882.53 
Average Cost of an Inexpensive Restaurant Meal €15
Average Transportation Cost (Monthly)€100
Average Cost of Utility (Monthly)€276.21

Which Country is Better?

The tables above show that the living expenses in China are lower than in Ireland. Hence, China will receive +2 points in this round of China vs Ireland. 

Also Read: Scholarships in China

Work Permit and PR

Many students study abroad with the motive of finding a job there and eventually gaining permanent residency. So, the ease of getting a work permit and PR is also an important consideration one should have while choosing the right destination

Work Permit in China

Let’s take a look at how a work permit is awarded in China: 

Eligibility Criteria for a Work Permit in China:

To apply for a Chinese work permit, you have to submit the documents shown below: 

  • A valid passport,
  • A completed application form, 
  • A passport-sized photograph, 
  • Medical examination report from an authorized hospital,
  • An approval document for commercial performances,
  • TEFL/TESOL certificate authenticated by the Chinese embassy or consulate (applicable only for teaching positions),
  • Reference letter,
  • Clean criminal record,
  • Registration Certificate of Resident Representative Offices of Enterprises from Foreign Countries,
  • Foreigners Work Permit notification letter issued by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security of the PRC, and
  • Issued by the Chinese government authorities for Cultural Affairs. 

To be offered the notification letter, your employer needs you to submit the following documents to the Labour Bureau:

  • Degree or diploma (legalised and authenticated),
  • Proof of at least two years of work experience in the relevant field,
  • Your resume, 
  • Verification of education or professional qualifications,
  • A copy of the job contract,
  • Information concerning any accompanying members,
  • Verification of employment history, and
  • Physical examination record. 

Steps to Apply for a Chinese Work Permit

Follow the steps listed below to get a Chinese Work Permit:

Step 1: You are needed to have been offered a job in China

Step 2: After you have successfully secured a job, collect and prepare all the required documents.

Step 3: Now, proceed with your application by applying for a Chinese work visa at a Chinese embassy/consulate, and pay the needed application fees. 

Step 4: Finally, you will obtain your work visa after the completion of your application process. 

The processing time for a Chinese work visa is roughly 4 working days, based on the number of applications the embassy receives. 

PR in China

You can be given a permanent residency visa regardless of your position or employer if you:

  • Earn a salary of more than ¥600,000 annually, 
  • Pay your income taxes on time (¥120,000 or more yearly), and 
  • Have worked in Shanghai for over four years without having any criminal record in your home country.

Work Permit in Ireland

Let’s understand the process of obtaining a work permit in Ireland:

Eligibility Criteria for a Work Permit in Ireland

You must fulfil the following eligibility criteria to receive a work permit in Ireland:

  • The applicants are required to be hired temporarily. They might also get a bid from an Ireland-based company. 
  • That firm has to clear the Labour Markets Needs Test in case the applicant is applying for a work visa (other than a Critical Skills Employment visa). 
  • This test shows that the Irish-descent employer couldn’t fill the vacancy with a qualified Irish or EU/EEA/Swiss citizen.
  • If you wish to be eligible for a Critical Skills Employment Permit, you must earn a minimum of €30,000 or €80,000 annually. This depends on the kind of work you are seeking.
  • Applicants for General Work Permits are required to have a minimum annual wage of €30,000.
  • The minimum yearly wage must fulfil the National Minimum Wage, excluding the General Employment Permit and Critical Skills Employment Permit. 
  • The Irish employer that hires the candidate for a work visa has to employ at least 50% of its personnel from the EEA, EU, or Switzerland.

Apply for a Work Permit in Ireland 

You need to first identify the kind of work permit you want to apply for. Post figuring out the required work permit, the applicant has to complete the associated application form. The Irish work permit takes around 13 weeks to process, and the candidates can check their work visa status for Ireland on the DBEI website.

PR in Ireland 

If you are a non-EEA national who has been legally staying in Ireland for the last 5 years and possess a work permit, you can receive permanent residence in Ireland.

Which Country is Better? 

The above comparison implies that the process of getting a work permit and permanent residency is slightly easier in Ireland than in China. Hence, we will award +2 points to Ireland in this round of China vs Ireland. 

Also Read: 🇮🇪 MSc Finance in Ireland: Top Universities, Eligibility, Admission Process & Scholarships 

Average Salaries: China vs Ireland

A fresh graduate in China receives an average salary of ¥10,342 per month according to TeamedUp China. On the other hand, the average annual salary is €33,383 to €50,000 a year in Ireland after graduation. 

Which Country is Better? 

The average salary in Ireland is more than in China, as apparent from above. So, we will award +2 points to Ireland in this round of China vs Ireland. 

Other Major Elements

Let’s have a look at some other important considerations like climate, safety, and culture that determine whether a country is suitable for you or not.


China is in the temperate climate zone, and most of the regions are cool, however, the southern part is hot and the nation’s northern part is quite frigid. In Ireland, the climate is immensely affected by the Atlantic Ocean. The warm ocean currents keep the climate temperate in this country. 


It is mostly safe to move to China, as long as you are alert and aware of where you are going. Just follow the local rules and know their local culture. Known for its welcoming environment and low crime rate, Ireland is also a very safe country. 

Culture for International Students

International students pursuing their education in China can report a very gratifying experience. However, they may be required to culturally adapt and understand the local language to have a better experience. Talking about Ireland, the locals here are famous for their warm hospitality and friendly nature, causing overseas students to feel welcomed and embraced.

Also Read: 🎓Top Veterinary Courses in Ireland 2024


After calculating the total scores, we find that China has received 8 points, while Ireland has got 4 points. Hence, China has won this China vs Ireland contest.

That being said, both nations are excellent destinations for the pursuit of education and your choice depends on various factors, such as your personal preferences. 


Q1. Is China a good destination for international students?

Ans. Home to numerous top-ranked universities and prominent employers, China is an amazing destination for overseas students. 

Q2. How much does it cost to study in Ireland?

Ans. The average annual tuition fees in Ireland usually range from €9,000 to €40,000. 

Q3. How do I get PR in Ireland?

Ans. If you are a non-EEA national who has been legally living in Ireland for the last 5 years and possess a work permit, you can be given permanent residence in Ireland.

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So, this was all about China vs Ireland. Many Indian students dream of pursuing education in foreign nations due to the exposure and career growth they offer. Consider joining a free counselling session with Leverage Edu if you plan to study abroad

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