Relocating to Dubai? Some Things to Keep in Mind
Dubai is a city predominantly made up of expats. The lavish lifestyle promoted on social media attracts a vast number of tourists every year, with some choosing to make the leap and move permanently. A recent survey, the expat explorer survey, found that Dubai was voted the fourth best city in the world to live and work in!
For ambitious individuals, Dubai is also a fantastic place to grow your career. Many multinational corporations use the UAE as their central office in the Middle East, while others take advantage of the opportunity in the area to start up their own business.
As we head into the winter months and get closer to the New Year, Dubai normally experiences a surge in newcomers moving to the city to enjoy the cooler weather. Below are some notes to keep in mind if you are a newcomer to the region:
You may want to look at the weather forecast before you pack your bags! Dubai has a reputation for being a particularly hot city, especially in the summer. Temperatures can soar to almost 50 Celsius in the peak of the day. Buildings, homes, and even public transport in Dubai are all luckily equipped with air-conditioning making it much more bearable. Winter can be quite a contract however, with even the expats having to add an extra layer in the cooler evenings!
No language barriers
A big worry for most when moving to a foreign country is communication issues. Luckily in Dubai this isn’t an issue. You would struggle to find a place where English wasn’t widely spoken. While Arabic isn’t necessarily needed to get around or to secure a job, you may find yourself picking up some local phrases after a while!
It’s a very safe place
Safety also shouldn’t be a concern if you are considering moving to the UAE. Laws are strict and prison sentences for offenders are long, which deters a lot of criminal activity here. It is a very safe place to live alone and to be out after dark. In fact, locals and expats worry so little about theft, its not uncommon to find cars with keys in the ignition, or to leave the car on outside while the air conditions kicks in!
Getting your feet on the ground:
The quality of life in Dubai is notoriously high, and with this comes a lot of expenses. Finding work will be a top priority when making the leap over to the UAE, as it can be easy to burn through a budget very quickly over here. LinkedIn, GulfTalent and of course recruitment agencies are your best bet when beginning your job search. Many start their job search while still abroad as it can be a bit of a financial risk coming
Working in Dubai
If your move to Dubai comes from outside the Middle East, one thing to be aware of is the change in the working week! Normal office hours in Dubai are 9am – 6pm Sunday to Thursday.
Finding a place to stay
There are various different suburbs and communities to choose from in Dubai, with quieter areas like Jumeirah, up to the hustle and bustle of Dubai Marina. When looking for somewhere to stay the most trustworthy websites are Propertyfinder and Bayut. There is also a vast amount of Estate Agencies in operation that are very experience with newcomers.
Get medical insurance
Unlike the UK and some other countries, there is no universal healthcare system in the UAE. It’s best to make sure you are covered on a good medical policy in case of any emergences or health issues.
If you are negotiating a role when moving over to the region, make sure you discuss whether medical insurance is covered in your benefits. This is a normal standard benefit included along with your visa.
Whether you are moving to Dubai for work, a better life or just nicer weather, its best to do your research thoroughly first!