The Isle of Man's Economy started out with Celtic settlers. These simple people made small farms with basic livestock and fished in nearby streams and rivers. As time moved on farming skills improved and soon the harbours could be seen filled with small fishing boats. The fishing trade expanded into exports of herring and even took in a little smuggling. Agriculture grew into a business, seeing cows and sheep massively out numbering the people.
Times changed and the island saw an end to smuggling. Fishing too lost some of its boom. The Isle of Man had to change its direction. Move into new lines to push the economy forward. Tourism was the next big thing and it proved very good for the island. Railways were made, towns grew to support the ever increasing numbers of tourists and shipping became a new driving force for the island.
Modern times saw cars taking tourists to the continent and cheap flights to far away foreign destinations and the Isle of Man began to lose some of its shine as a beach holiday location. To keep the economy from ruin, changed had to be made. Changes to tax rates and laws for businesses pushed the Isle of Man into a new economy. One of international proportions, which developed the island into a finance centre.
Today the island finds its economy mainly based around financial services. Agriculture and fishing still prove a valued asset, as do other smaller industries.
Isle of Man Toursit FAQ's
Q. Where exactly is the 'Isle of Man'?
A. The Isle of Man lies in the Irish Sea between Scotland and Ireland. It is about 77 miles northwest of Liverpool, England. Geography
Q. Is it easy to get around the island?
A. YES! Whether you bring your vehicle on the boat, rent a car, ride on public buses, or use the vintage transport. The Isle of Man operates much like any place in the UK. Transportation
Q. Does the island have places for Kids?
A. Indeed it does. Most of the 'Story of Mann' is designed with kids or families in mind. There are also beaches, pools, and water sports. Cinemas, ten pin bowling, and much more. The island also has an extensive wildlife park. Wildlife Park
Q. Does everyone on the island speak Manx?
A. The everyday language of the Isle of Man is British English. Few people speak the native Manx Language. Manx Language
Q. Is the Isle of Man part of the UK?
A. No, the Isle of Man is a crown dependency which has its own laws, courts, and government. The Government on the Isle of Man is a parliament called Tynwald. Government
Q. What entertainment is there on the island?
A. The island has many pubs, clubs and restaurants as well as a Victorian theatre, casino and arts centre. There is something for everyones tastes available throughout the year.
Q. Are there many options for shopping?
A. There is a variety of shopping available on the island, from well known UK high street shops, to local craft, art and woollen shops. Tynwald Mills and Craft Centre
Q. What currency do I need for my visit?
A. The Isle of Man uses pound sterling, the same as the UK. It does however print its own notes and coins, which look slightly different to the UK equivalent. Currency from the UK is perfectly acceptable to use on the island.
Q. Do I need my passport to visit the island?
A. No. The Isle of Man is part of the common travel area for the UK. So there is no need to carry a passport if you are coming from the travel area of the UK, Republic of Ireland or the Channel Islands. However many airlines do require passengers to show photo ID before boarding the plane.
Q. What is the STD Dialing Code for the Isle of Man?
A. That would be 01624.
Q. Can I Send Letters with UK Stamps?
A. No. The Isle of Man issues its own stamps and though they may look like or even be priced the same as in the UK, you will need to buy Manx Stamps to send letters from the Island.
Q. Will I be able to bring my caravan to the Island?
A. The Isle of Man does not allow trailer caravans on the Island without a permit. Motor Caravans are welcomed.
Life on The Isle of Man
There is a mix of culture and people living on the Isle of Man. From the native Manx to immigrants from South Africa, the island is as mixed as the United Kingdom and flourishes because of it. Most people are of Irish, Welsh, Scottish and British descent, but this is expected due to the location of the island between the United Kingdom and Ireland. The island has seen large numbers of immigrants in recent years, but there are still plenty of locals. The Manx are of Celtic and Viking descent. This has greatly effected the culture on the island, which has strong roots in Celtic and Viking traditions.
The standard of living on the island is very good. There is almost no unemployment and strong community spirit. Many compare life on the island to be much like it is in northern England or Wales, and they would not be far wrong. The Isle of Man is a scene of small sea side towns and villages with a quiet and more relaxed way of life. Where things get done in their own time.
The Isle of Man has a very low crime rate. This could be due to a mixture of low unemployment and high community spirit. The island does tend to take a very hard line on criminal offences. Even small crimes are often given high fines or jail time.
There is a National Health scheme on the Isle of Man that resembles that of the UK, but does not have the long waiting lists. Most of the general treatments and surgeries are done on the island, but for more complicated procedures the Isle of Man Government sends patients to the UK for private treatment there.
The Education system on the Isle of Man runs much like that of the UK. Students attend school from 4/5 years to 16 years with an optional additional two. Exams for SAT, GCSE, and A level are the same as in the UK except for the native language Manx, which has its own exams. One minor difference is that French is taught from 8 years old.