Ireland Lifestyle Stats


The Irish are amongst the happiest people on earth with 42% admitting to being 'very happy', in a world survey in 2005, placing the nation 3rd, behind Venezuela (55%) and Nigeria (45%). However, some 53% admitted to being 'quite happy', placing them 29th amongst 50 nations, while just 5% stating they were 'not very or not at all happy'. What is more, the Irish seem happy to share their good fortune with 7% of the population being members of voluntary organisations, the 4th highest rate behind Australia (18%), the US (15%) and Netherlands (9%).


  • Cannabis use: Percentage share of people who have used cannabis, generally including people 15 and above. Different nations have, however, focussed their studies on different age groups. United States and Netherlands: data for years 12 and above. Greece: Data for ages 12 to 64. Australia: data for ages 14 and above. United Kingdom: data for ages 16 to 59. Germany: data for ages 18-59. Denmark and France: data for ages 18 to 69. Data for 1998 or 1999 in most cases. Germany, Poland, and Spain: data for 1997. Austria: data for 1996. Denmark, France and Ireland: data for 1995.
  • Food and drink > Alcohol > Consumption > Current: Alcohol consumption - Litres per capita by population aged above 15. (Data for 2003).
  • Food and drink > Beer > Consumption: Litres of beer consumed per person per year (2002).
  • Food and drink > Coffee > Consumption: Kilograms of coffee consumed per person per year, 2002.
  • Food and drink > Exports: Food comprises the commodities in SITC sections 0 (food and live animals), 1 (beverages and tobacco), and 4 (animal and vegetable oils and fats) and SITC division 22 (oil seeds, oil nuts, and oil kernels)."
  • Food and drink > Fruit juice > Consumption: Consumption of fruit juices. Litres per person per year, 2002.
  • Food and drink > Soft drink > Consumption: Consumption of carbonated soft drinks. Litres per person per year, 2002.
  • Food and drink > Tea > Consumption: Kilograms of tea consumed per person per year, 2002.
  • Happiness level > Very happy: Proportion of people who answered the survey question: "Taking all things together, would you say you are: very happy, quite happy, not very happy, or not at all happy?" by stating that they were "Very happy".
  • Happiness net: This statistic is compiled from responses to the survey question: "Taking all things together, would you say you are: very happy, quite happy, not very happy, or not at all happy?". The "Happiness (net)" statistic was obtained via the following formula: the percentage of people who rated themselves as either "quite happy" or "very happy" minus the percentage of people who rated themselves as either "not very happy" or "not at all happy".
  • Leisure > Recreation and culture > Household expenditure on recreation and culture: Household expenditure on recreation and culture includes purchases of audio-visual, photographic and computer equipment; CDs and DVDs; musical instruments; camper vans; caravans; sports equipment; toys; domestic pets and related products; gardening tools and plants; newspapers; tickets to sporting matches, cinemas and theatres; and spending on gambling (including lottery tickets) less any winnings. It excludes expenditures on restaurants, hotels, and travel and holiday homes but includes package holidays.

    Government expenditures include administration of sporting, recreational and cultural affairs as well as the maintenance of zoos, botanical gardens, public beaches and parks; support for broadcasting services and, where present, support for religious, fraternal, civic, youth and other social organisations (including the operation and repair of facilities and payment to clergy and other officers.) Also included are grants to artists and arts companies. Capital outlays such as the construction of sports stadiums, public swimming pools, national theatres, opera houses and museums are included.
  • Life satisfaction: Most scores are based on responses to the following question: "All things considered, how satisfied or dissatisfied are you with your life-as-a-whole now? 1 dissatisfied to10 satisfied" (item code O-SLW/c/sq/n/10/a). Scores of ten nations are based on responses to a somewhat different question: "Suppose the top of the ladder represents the best possible life for you and the bottom of the ladder the worst possible life. Where on this ladder do you feel you personally stand at the present time?" The response was rated on a ladder scale ranging from 0 to 10 (item code O-BW/c/sq/l/11/c). We transformed the scores using the information of nations in which both this item and the above question on life-satisfaction had been used in about the same years.
  • Quality of life index: Quality of Life Index is an estimation of overall quality of life by using empirical formula (the formula is an our opinion and it's based on experiments). The actual formula might be changed. Currently, we put the highest weight to pollution - if the environment is polluted too much, the economy or safety cannot fulfill it. We put the second highest importance to safety, since it is more important to feel safe rather than wealthy, in our opinion. etc. The number 65 is added so that the numbers are in such range so it rarely goes under zero (65 is a range modifier).
  • Roller coasters: Number of roller coasters in each country. Includes both wooden and steel constructions.
  • Society > Subjective well-being > People reporting negative experiences > Depression: Measures of life satisfaction reflect the cognitive evaluation of life as a whole, now and five years from now, made by each person. The measures shown here are based on ladder-of-life questions, which ask respondents to rate their life from the worst (0) to the best (10) level, and refer to the share of people who rate their life (today and in the future) at step 7 or higher.

    Measures of positive and negative experiences and feelings refer to people who declared having experienced six different forms of negative and positive experiences during the previous day. Also shown are two composite indexes of positive and negative experiences, calculated at the individual record level. For each person, the 6 items are recoded so that positive answers are scored as 1 and negative answers (including “don’t know” and “refused to answer”) a 0; an individual record has an index calculated if it has at least 5 out of 6 valid scores. Each person’s composite index is the mean of valid items multiplied by 100, and the country level score shown in the table is the mean of all individual records for which an index was calculated.

    Population shares are calculated as a percentage of all respondents excluding those who refused or didn’t’ know how to answer the various survey questions.
Cannabis use 7.91% 1999 6th out of 26
Food and drink > Alcohol > Consumption > Current 13.5 litres per capita 2003 3rd out of 30
Food and drink > Beer > Consumption 155 litres 2002 1st out of 18
Food and drink > Coffee > Consumption 0.7 kgs 2002 18th out of 18
Food and drink > Exports 8.76 2009 78th out of 116
Food and drink > Fruit juice > Consumption 15.1 litres 2002 17th out of 18
Food and drink > Soft drink > Consumption 126 litres 2002 2nd out of 18
Food and drink > Tea > Consumption 1.5 kgs 2002 2nd out of 18
Happiness level > Very happy 42% 2005 4th out of 50
Happiness net 89% 2005 7th out of 50
Leisure > Recreation and culture > Household expenditure on recreation and culture 3.09% 2009 25th out of 26
Life satisfaction 7.8 2004 5th out of 69
Quality of life index 138.53 2014 18th out of 69
Roller coasters 2 2006 58th out of 75
Society > Subjective well-being > People reporting negative experiences > Depression 6.08% 2009 21st out of 28

SOURCES: OECD; OECD Health Data 2005; Global Market Information Database, published by Euromonitor; World Bank staff estimates from the Comtrade database maintained by the United Nations Statistics Division.; World Values Survey 2005; OECD Country statistical profiles 2009; World Database of Happiness, Happiness in Nations, Rank Report 2004/1  Average happiness in 90 nations 1990-2000; quality of life; The Roller Coaster Database, 2006.


"Ireland Lifestyle Stats", NationMaster. Retrieved from http://www.nationmaster.com/country-info/profiles/Ireland/Lifestyle

  • Ireland ranked first for happiness level > very happy amongst Europe in 2005.


Thank you . Much appreciated Gabe

Posted on 25 Jan 2010