Third-level students in Limerick are staying in hotels because they cannot find suitable accommodation in the city.
In a sign that the student accommodation crisis has spread this year beyond the larger university cities such as Dublin or Cork, students studying in Limerick are paying up to €390 weekly for five nights in a hotel as part of a deal struck between Mary Immaculate College and three city hotels to accommodate students.
The teacher training college says it is the first time it has had to do this for students returning after the summer break. It has reached a similar agreement with one hotel in Thurles where it has a smaller campus.
The college has acknowledged that it is "not ideal" but says there is no other option.