Three couples share their emigration plans to start new lives in Australia, Canada and the United States.

Des and Ita Fitzsimons will leave for Australia on 16 January. An electronic engineer and a midwife, they both feel they have achieved as much as they can in Ireland. They have both been offered jobs in Australia at higher pay rates than they can earn in Ireland. The warm climate is also an attraction. While visiting Australia on a four week holiday, the couple decided to find out what it was like to live and work there.

The proposition was very, very attractive.

The main issues of concern were jobs, housing, the cost of living and the ability to get a mortgage.

According to Ita Fitzsimons,

The majority of things were about half the price of here.

Her sister and family moved to Australia six years ago for two years and stayed. Ita Fitzsimons is particularly looking forward to sitting on the beach in the month of November.

Fergus and Margaret Kennedy are emigrating to Alberta, Canada in January. Fergus is a doctor and Margaret is a qualified nurse but has not worked since the birth of their child. The couple also feel they have gone as far as they can in Ireland and have decided to get out. Their decision to move has nothing to do with the weather as when they arrive it will be about minus 20 degrees.

The couple went out to Canada for six weeks, liked what they saw and decided to make the move. Margaret Kennedy says they always wanted to travel so the move made sense. While they have a young baby, they believe he is young enough to adjust to life in a new country. Fergus Kennedy has a job lined up as a GP with four other doctors. The practice will provide accommodation for the couple on their arrival where they will stay until they find their own place to buy. One of the attractions of buying a home in Canada is that interest rates are fixed at the time of purchase.

It's not as easy to get established here as it is in Canada.

Fergus Kennedy will have about double the salary in Canada that he currently earns in Ireland.

Tom and Margaret Dennehy are leaving for New Jersey next year. They have three children. Tom is a truck driver but feels he will get a better deal in America where he can earn more money and pay less tax. The couple have always wanted to travel, have no ties in Ireland so decided to make the move.

We just decided we'd sell up and go.

Tom, Margaret and their children will stay with family in New Jersey until they get settled. They hope to find their own house within two months. Margaret plans to work as a helper for a family member who is already living in New Jersey. Margaret has her work permit in place but Tom has yet to get one.

The family are travelling to the US on the back of Margaret's work permit. The couple spent three weeks in New Jersey a year and a half ago and did some research into living there. Margaret believes that they will have a smaller mortgage at lower interest rates.

This episode of 'The Late Late Show' was broadcast on 5 December 1981. The presenter is Gay Byrne.