United Arab Emirates


Interesting Facts

  • Between 15 - 25% of the worlds construction cranes are in Dubai at any given time
  • There is no personal income tax in Dubai
  • Dubai has the tallest building in the world (Burj Khalifa)
  • Dubai is one of the safest cities in the world
  • Dubai has an indoor ski slope which daily produces 6000 tons of snow

Key Market Alerts

  • Rentals are paid for 12 months in advance, with a 5% security deposit and 5% agency commission, paid by the tenant.
  • An alcohol permit is needed to purchase alcohol.
  • 5% of annual rental, that is divided into 12 months is added to the DEWA (electricity and water) account each month.

An Overview of the United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is located on the Persian Gulf at the end of the Arabian Peninsula, bordered by Oman to the north and east, Qatar to the west and Saudi Arabia to the south. The country was established December 2nd 1971 before which, it was known as the Trucial States and was overseen by the British Government.

The UAE is made up of seven Emirates: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras al Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm al Quwain. Abu Dhabi is the largest, making up 80% of the UEA’s land mas, and the city of Abu Dhabi is the capital of the UAE.

Dubai is however the biggest city and the economic powerhouse of the UAE, as well as the location of regional head offices of many international company and the most popular expatriate location in the Middle East.

The United Arab Emirates is one of the safest countries in the world according to United Nations. They do not often involve themselves in international politics although they are a member of the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council).

The UAE has seen remarkable growth and advancement in recent years and today Dubai is a major financial hub in the Middle East and has revenues based on trade, tourism, retail and re-export businesses and relies less and less on revenues from oil.

Living in Dubai

Expatriates love living in Dubai. It has become extremely cosmopolitan and is home to many nationalities. The Emirati culture is extremely tolerant to many different cultures and religions, however, they do expect that the expatriates show the same respect in return, by dressing appropriately in public and not showing extreme PDA (public display of affection).

There is a great outdoors lifestyle. Running tracks and cycle tracks have been built to encourage exercise and a healthy lifestyle. However, in summer (from June to October) the temperature can reach 50 degrees with 100% humidity.

The work week runs from Sunday to Thursday and Friday and Saturday are the weekend days off. However, many expatriates find themselves working on a Fridays to line up with the western working week.

Housing in Dubai

It is advisable to only use reputable real estate agencies who hold a RERA license.

Finding suitable accommodation is probably the most crucial factor in making your move to Dubai a success. The first thing to decide is what type of accommodation you want within your budget and in what part of town you wish to live.

There are many expatriate areas in Dubai to choose from and by 2020, even more housing locations will be completed, which will help alleviate the current demand.

Housing is expensive. Sometimes homes are not in good condition when viewed because the landlord wants to secure a tenant before he will do the maintenance work on the home.

Schooling in Dubai

Like the rest of the GCC, school places are often hard to get, so many points are to be considered when looking for the right school for your children. Online applications are vital before moving to the UAE in general and there are times that you will not get into your first school choice, or get all 3 or 4 children into the same school.

It would be advisable to get online applications into at least 2-3 schools, so that you have a back-up depending on assessments and availability.

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