As a global center of finance, commerce, and trade, Dubai the capital city of the United Arab Emirates, offers ex-pats an enticingly blissful tax-free existence in a city that pulsates with the latest fashion, trends, innovations, and more.
Offering an almost zero crime rate with luxurious homes and villas, coupled with world-class standards in healthcare and education, the city also offers young upwardly mobile families the opportunity to experience a jet-set lifestyle in a city that is brazen enough to call itself ‘the city of the future – and everyone believes it.
But, just before you get to packing there are a few things you need to know about Dubai, because beyond the façade and bright lights lies a city that is caught somewhere between a modern, forward-looking ‘west’, and a city steeped in ancient Arabian culture, and while this is intoxicating for most, there have been well-documented cases of when this mix didn’t exactly work out for some.
Here’s what you need to know.
Be prepared to live fast. Very, very fast.
Residents of Dubai live extraordinarily busy lifestyles, from work commitments to personal lives, their diaries fill up quickly. Even if you’re from a big city like New York or London, you’ll quickly discover that Dubai is a city and soul all of its own. So from the world go, learn about which parties and events you want to attend and which you can do without. If you’re visiting for a vacation and were looking for a chilled experience, this isn’t it. Try Spokane.
All that living doesn’t come cheap.
Folks don’t always grasp how high the cost of living in Dubai really is. Between rent, groceries, lifestyle choices, and bills those dollar amounts add up, and they add up quickly. So even though your salary looks dizzyingly high (and it will be), spend wisely. You’re not likely going to be driving a Lamborghini as soon as you get there.
You must (and we repeat, must follow the country’s laws)
This is the part where westerners fall foul. Dubai is a cosmopolitan and forward-leaning city, but it is still in the Middle East and is heavily influenced by Islamic culture, and Islamic law. While ex-pats living and working in the city won’t notice too much of a change to their lifestyles, nevertheless don’t get caught unawares. Dress modestly, don’t be drunk in public, and never indulge in public displays of affection and if you’re a member of the LGBTQ+ community, this is not the time to be waving your rainbow flag around.
Play by the rules, be discreet and respectful, and you’ll have the time of your life.
Your deluxe apartment in the sky.
Workers the world over are bowled over by the quality of life in Dubai, and this is reflected in the quality of housing options you have at your disposal. In line with major cities in terms of cost, it’s the space, finishes, and luxurious lines that set these homes apart. Again, they don’t come cheaply and some developments will require the first year’s rent – in advance. The banks will extend you lines of credit for this purpose on the presentation of a work contract, and they’re comfortable doing this because if you attempt to leave the country with unpaid debts – you could be facing a hefty prison sentence. You will love all of the luxury apartments for rent in this fabulous city.