Living in Dubai Can Be a Dream Come True
It's the ultimate dream; plenty of sun, sea, a beachfront property
surrounded by your friends and family and a job that pays you through
the roof. It doesn't have to be a dream anymore if you're thinking about
living in Dubai.
Before you move to the Emirate, no doubt there are plenty of things
you need to think about. Below is an overview of some of these considerations.
Living in Dubai with Children
If you have a family particularly children and are thinking about moving
to Dubai, its obviously going to be quite a worrying time for you. There
are many things you need to think about, for example the first and foremost
is their education. Unlike the UK, schooling is not free in the Emirate
and in fact can be quite expensive depending on where they study and
how many children you have.
The good news is that there are plenty of British and American based
schools in the City. Costs will vary but what one should know is most
of them are not cheap. Costs therefore need to be factored in for their
fees, uniforms, trips etc when you plan your budget. The majority of
expat salary packages generally include schooling but it's always best
to ask for this from the outset so there are no hidden surprises afterwards.
General Cost of Living in Dubai
Life in Dubai can be as good or as bad as you make it. Most people
go to Dubai to make their life better from a financial and a quality
of life perspective. This is completely a lifestyle choice.
With regards to the basic costs, the majority of your outgoings will
tend to be mainly from accommodation rental, school fees and your grocery
shopping. Do not be under any illusion that Dubai is cheap because it
is not. However, saying that, if you are a UK expat and are good at
your job, you may be lured into a role which has fantastic benefits.
It's not uncommon to have all your accommodation, school fees and bills
paid for by organisations.
Telephone calls to the UK and US aren't too expensive and all local
calls in Dubai are free.
Grocery shopping can cost you anything between £500 - £1000
per month but it all depends on your personal preferences.
Food is actually on par with the UK in terms of fast food so its not
The only thing that you'd expect to be very cheap is fuel. No surprises
there from a State that produces oil.
The best way to maximise on reducing these outgoings is to try and negotiate
a deal with your employers, the more benefits you can receive, the better.
This then leaves you with potentially more tax free money in your pocket
at the end of each month.
Renting in Dubai
Renting a property in Dubai isn't actually that difficult. The recession
has had a mediocre effect on the Emirate with property and rent prices
dropping signification. As a result, those that could not previously
afford to live in Dubai have now realise they can. Rents have almost
halved in the last few years as a result of the global credit crisis
in addition to the massive oversupply of properties.
When you do rent, you need to consider costs such as air conditioning
which can cost on average between £100-£200 per month depending
on the time of season. Its always better to try and get the cost of
this included with your accommodation package.
Before you embark on a trying to find the ultimate rental property,
do remember that you are sometimes required to pay at least 6 months
of rent, if not 12 months. There is a law that states that landlords
cannot increase the rental price for a minimum of 2 years. If you do
stay longer than two years then sometimes these increases can be quite
high. We've heard of between 10 - 25 % in some cases.
Where to Live in Dubai
This will depend on your financial status and just like in any city
of the world, Dubai is not different. If you are an expat, there are
many options available; the majority of Europeans, Americans and Australians
tend to live in the upmarket area of Downtown Dubai near the marina.
This comprises of mostly high-end apartment blocks. Most actually live
within the business district or in the vicinity of Sheikh Zayed Road
as this is one of the major hubs of the City. If you enjoy a luxury
lifestyle and are looking for somewhere flamboyant and somewhere which
screams luxury, then there are many communities of Villas that can be
found. These include 'The Greens', 'The Springs' 'Arabian Ranches' and
also the Palm Islands.
If you are on a budget then you may want to look slightly further out
a field to the Northern Emirates such as Ajman, Ras Al Khaimah (which
has a large expat population) or even Fujairah. Sharjah is only a short
drive from Dubai but tends to be more suited to those from a Muslim
background as it is a very strict Emirate in terms of Shariah Law.
Expats Living in Dubai
If you are an Expat living in Dubai, you will no doubt appreciate how
friendly and multi-cultural this remarkable city is. The majority of
the population in Dubai is made up of expatriates who have made the
City their home. If you are from the 'Western' world then you will notice
that there is quite a large representation from the United Kingdom (UK),
Ireland, USA, and other European Countries. Dubai also has lots of expats
from South Africa, Australia and also from Eastern Europe.
The majority however are made up from South Asia like India, Pakistan
and Bangladesh who are responsible for the development of infrastructure
and manual labour. People from the Philippines also have a presence
mostly in the corporate hospitality sector too.
As a result of all these different communities, there is a great deal
of things to do, for example if you want to go to an Irish Pub and celebrate
St Patrick's Day then this isn't a problem at all.
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