International migration over great distances is one expression of increased global connectivity. Migration between Brazil and Ireland since the late 1990s illustrates three well-recognised contemporary flows: recruitment on work permits to fill vacancies in both manual and professional employment and student migration to attain language and higher educational training and skills. The scale and types of labour recruitment changed over time, in association with changing economic conditions and labour availability in Ireland and enlargement of the European Union (EU). Many of the early migrants returned to Brazil but some remain undocumented in Ireland. Migration between Brazil and Ireland provides an interesting example of the establishment of new economic and social relations between previously weakly-connected countries, in a relatively short period of time.