‘I saved €17,500 going abroad for dental work, instead of remortgaging my home and paying up to €35,000 here’

Ed Finn faced the prospect of having to fork out up to €35,000 and remortgage his home in order to get costly dental work done.

nstead, he looked at his options abroad and managed to save more than €17,000 by having his teeth fixed at a dental surgery in Budapest, Hungary.

Due to issues with cracked veneers after getting dental work done in South Africa a few years previously, Mr Finn desperately wanted to fix his teeth but was quoted prices ranging from €28,000 to €35,000 by Irish clinics.

It would have meant remortgaging his home in order to afford the expense.

Then a colleague of Mr Finn’s returned from Budapest, where he had “high-quality” dental work done, and the travel journalist decided his only option was to look abroad for dental treatment.

“I got lots of prices, as I was going to try get a full set of crowns done if I could. So, for the job I was looking for – I think it was 23 crowns – I got quotes from €28k to €35k in Ireland,” he said.

“It was just crazy, completely unaffordable.

“I got prices in Dublin and in Belfast. They were slightly less in Belfast, around €5,000 less.

“I was chatting to someone at work who had got their teeth done in Budapest. He had them done three years ago and never had any problems, so I went over and had my consultation.

“It wasn’t just the cost that appealed to me, but also the person that recommended the clinic compared it to the Star Wars of clinics.

“He said they were on another level in terms of dentistry in Budapest.”

Mr Finn originally had concerns about travelling overseas to get dental work, but after speaking to the clinic’s Irish representative he felt more at ease.

“I got a quotation and I just decided that this was very affordable, they were extremely professional, and I had word of mouth about the quality, so I went ahead with my treatment in Budapest,” he said.

“After my consultation, they found that I had other issues too. I had got root canal treatment in Ireland that cost me quite a lot of money, but it wasn’t done properly, so in Budapest they fixed everything for me.”

Overall, Mr Finn paid €10,500 for his dental treatment, saving €17,500, after being quoted €28,000 to €35,000 in Ireland for the same procedure.

Seven years after getting the crowns done, Mr Finn said he has never had any issues with the dental work and has even travelled over to Budapest since to get more dental treatment.

“Just before Covid, one of my teeth cracked that I hadn’t had crowned during my procedure,” he said. “I got a price in Ireland to fix it, which was €2,500, so I went back to Budapest and got it done for €1,200.”

Mr Finn believes having an aftercare dentist based here in Ireland can put patients that are travelling abroad at ease.

“They have dentists here in Ireland too, and for me that was very important that if anything went wrong I had back-up here and that I didn’t have to fly to Budapest every time something happened, which was something I was originally worried about,” he said.

Mr Finn’s top tips when travelling abroad are to research the clinic, look at reviews and make sure they offer maintenance after your procedure.

“My advice would be to definitely do your research. And what was impressive for me was that the back-up service was really good in terms of when I arrived at the airport there was someone waiting for me, they arranged the hotel, it was just hands-on,” he said.

“I would just say make sure to do your research and check reviews. I was lucky, I had word of mouth – which to me was very important. And give yourself time.

“I would get my teeth cleaned every five to six months.

“Maintenance is very important, so once you do that and look after them, you’ll have them for life.”

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