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Highs and Lows of living in Middle East

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Highs and Lows of living in Middle East

Postby wings149 » Mon 28 Apr 2008 14:40 GMT

Hi Everyone,

Please would someone be able to tell me what are the highs of living in Dubai and also the lows, what to watch out for and if its a good move from the UK with two young children, my eldest if 4 years old.

I would appreciate anything anyone has to say on the country
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Postby veralynn » Tue 29 Apr 2008 05:06 GMT

Hi Wings
First of all I should tell you that I have never lived in Dubai - but I've lived in Abu Dhabi, which is about 100km away, for almost 9 years, and I have friends who live in Dubai etc etc so I have a bit of insight.
Highs: it's tax free; sunshine; good schools; easy to travel to other ME or Far East countries; the 'life experience' of being an expat - different opportunities compared with home etc; generally an 'easy life' - most people have a maid, lots will own a boat, westerners get treated as 'upper class citizens' etc; high levels of personal safety.
Lows: it's a building site; getting more expensive by the day; traffic is awful and the driving standards worse; summer can be 50+ degrees and almost 100% humidity; locals can get away with anything whereas you could be imprisoned for giving the V sign - so no justice as westerners know it; school places and housing getting more and more difficult to find.
But overall I would say, yes, it's a good move, esp with young children as they have a ball out here. However, perhaps you should consider Abu Dhabi over Dubai as it's much nicer (imho)!!
What line of business are you in?
Veralynn
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Postby veralynn » Tue 29 Apr 2008 05:09 GMT

Hey Wings, I've just realised I've replied to you before. What happened to your job hunt?
VL
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Postby wings149 » Tue 29 Apr 2008 09:38 GMT

Hi VL

Great to hear from you again. do you know what the funniest thing has happened, well its not that funny really!

I started looking and it seemed to be taking forever and it was really hard work trying to find the right job. Well I decided that there must be reason for it and started looking else where. I have now got lawyers working for me as we have applied to move to New Zealand and everything is set for us to go in December, January time.

I have paid the money and the legal team are pretty much sorted, still have to find work in NZ but it shouldnt cause me too many problems. So we are all set, making plans and arrangements, I went out to NZ and toured the country to find where we were going to move to. Everyone happy.

Yesterday I receive a call from a recruitment agency in Dubai who have a position with a bank, they are very interested in me and want me for an interview, at present I am the favorite candidate and stand a very high chance of getting it. Well you can imagine my state of mind now! LOL

It's left me thinking OMG what should I do? where should I go? where is best for my kids? am I doing the right thing? should I just stick to NZ now I have paid the lawyers? Do I consider this interview? LOL.

Immigration is like buses for me, I tried for 5 years to go to different countries and no luck, now I can go to Dubai, NZ or Australia.

So there you go. what do you think? Thanks for asking though you gave me a lot of help last time I posted something.

All the best to you.

Kev
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Postby veralynn » Tue 29 Apr 2008 12:24 GMT

Hi Kev
Well that is a tricky one!
First of all I have never been to NZ, so bear that in mind.
OK, well, you should definitely do the interview because if you don't get the job then the decision is made for you! Or you might find out that it's not the job for you after all, or the salary isn't good enough or something like that. Other than that, a few random thoughts:
1. You said you've paid the money, well whether that's important or not is the amount you paid I guess, but ultimately you probably shouldn't take that into acount when making a long term decision like this.
2. Personally I would feel much happier moving my whole family to a country where I already had a job.
3. If you want to go somewhere culturally different and where you will have a lot of different life experiences you should choose Dubai. If you feel happier going somewhere that's more similar to home you should choose NZ. Ditto for heat v cool; money v lack of; maid v no maid; etc etc.
4. You've toured NZ - have to been Dubai to get a feel for it?
5. What's best for your kids? Again, for different life experiences - Dubai. For fresh air, outdoor activities etc - NZ. Education? Don't know about NZ but the only problem in Dubai is getting the school place.
6. NZ is a very, very long way from home. Dubai is a 6.5-7 hour flight.
7. What does your wife think?!

Wow, what a decision, how exciting! Let me know what happens!!
Cheers and good luck, VL
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Postby wings149 » Tue 29 Apr 2008 12:36 GMT

Hi VL,

Thanks once again for your advice, I think you best come and live with me as you are good at all this, LOL

You have touched on some very valid points, the things that bother me about Dubai are the lack of school places as I have heard the schools are full and dont want to be in a position where I have to return home so my kids can go to school which is what someone I know did

The heat, I love the heat and the hotter the better which is why I have always been drawn to the middle east. but not sure if the kids would like it, plus none of my family would visit me as they think its too hot.

With NZ, its very remote, Miles away from most of my family (although have family in oz who will support us) Salary to living costs is not good,it seems more expensive to live in NZ than in the UK.

Loads to think about. No Not been to Dubai yet although always wanted to.

I think that we have some things to be thinking of. The other option is that we go to NZ and when we have our PR we can leave to go to Dubai with the knowledge we can always return to the UK or NZ. best of all worlds. but hey life just doesnt work out that way.

I will speak with the agent later and see how they wish to do this interview, they did say something about using a web cam which would be great and at least if I dont get the job it will stop me from wondering.

Will keep you posted.

Thanks for that JL. Appreciate all your help

Many thanks

Kev.
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Postby veralynn » Wed 30 Apr 2008 04:22 GMT

Hi Kev
Well sometimes an outsider's perspective can be useful!
Just a couple of things:
I think the person who returned home due to lack of school places must have had other issues as well. I've never heard of that before and yes ok it can be tough, but not that tough! Your kids are young right? You should have plenty of time to sort out schoool places before it got to be a problem.
When we moved here my kids were 1 and 3 (about the same age as yours now) and they didn't seem to really notice the heat. Young kids are so adaptable, it's the ideal age to move. Also, it's not hot all year round, it can actually get a bit nippy in winter!
Good luck with the interview!
Vera.
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