Isle of Man

Health conditions are very similar to the UK. The island has a well-equipped modern hospital Noble's Hospital, near Douglas but some complicated medical conditions may require removal to the UK.

The Isle of Man is generally a very safe place, more so than much of the United Kingdom. In an emergency contact the Isle of Man Constabulary the island's police force on 999.

Town centres have real glass in bus shelters and graffiti is not prevalent. Alcohol is commonly a cause of anti-social behavior, though levels of violent crime are relatively low.


The international dial code for the Isle of Man is 44, the same as the United Kingdom, and has the dial code 01624 07624 for mobiles.

The island has two telephone operators, Manx Telecom and Sure Cable and Wireless. There are no UK-based operators in the island, so roaming charges may apply to foreign SIM cards.

Prepaid SIM cards are readily available in telephone shops and general stores.

The island has 3G and 4G mobile internet, and broadband internet is readily available. Wireless internet access is readily available from a number of hotspots in pubs, cafes, hotels, attractions and businesses.


English is the first language of all but a very small number of native speakers of Manx Gaelic. All children on the Isle of Man have the option to study Manx at school, and there have been efforts to revive the language. It is a descendant of Old Irish, along with Irish Gaelic and Scottish Gaelic. One of the most striking elements of the language is many consonant mutations can occur, e.g., Doolish the Manx name for Douglas, can easily become Ghoolish.


The Isle of Man's small size and small population means it can be a socially conservative place, although some major social reforms have been legislated for by Tynwald, the Manx parliament. Homosexuality is legal, and the island's Chief Minister is openly gay, though attitudes to homosexuality can be conservative, particularly among the older generations. Despite more than half of the island's population being born elsewhere, there is a low level of racial diversity, though racism is not usually an issue of concern.

Capital punishment was not officially abolished until 1993, although no execution had taken place on the island for over 100 years. Corporal punishment has also been abolished - it was used for young male offenders until the mid 1970s.

People from the Isle of Man are known as Manx. The Manx are very proud of their identity; the Manx flag will be frequently seen. You should be conscious of using terms such as "the mainland" for the UK, as the island is semi-independent - the locals simply refer to it as "across", from "across the water". The geographic isolation and harsh winters makes the Manx resourceful and self-sufficient - complaining about the lack of trivial things is likely to earn the reminder "there's a boat in the morningĀ !" - i.e. "if you can't survive an hour without organic quinoa, get back on the ferry".

In the past there have been accusations that the Isle of Man is a "tax haven". The finance industry is the major employer and considerable efforts have been made by the Manx authorities to improve the regulation and propriety of this industry. Some Manx regard the finance industry as a mixed blessing - although it has brought valuable jobs and financial stability when traditional employments such as farming and fishing have decreased because of EU competition, it has also led to significant immigration and cultural change, and the Manx have become a minority in their own country. The Isle of Man's financial industry now works to a more rigorous standard than the UK. Nevertheless, taxes are considerably lower than in the UK - although Valued Added Tax is the same by agreement between the Manx and UK Governments.