The Cost of Settling in the UAE

Moving your family to the UAE means dealing with issues such as visas, housing and school admissions.

Last Updated on October 30, 2013 by Brian Habibi

Moving your family to the UAE means dealing with issues such as visas, housing and school admissions.

Before making any career change decisions, it is of utmost importance to negotiate a good deal with your employer. Health insurance through a group plan and annual airfare back to your country are usually a given. Your company may even be willing to include accommodation or schooling allowance, although this has become less common over the last few years.

Sponsoring your family – wife and kids – depends entirely on your salary package. According to the Dubai government website: “Your monthly salary should not be less than AED 4,000 or AED 3,000 plus accommodation. If you want to sponsor a residence visa for your parents, your minimum monthly salary should be AED 10,000.” However another media report states: “There was a proposal by the Federal National Council (FNC) in December 2008 that the minimum salary should be increased to AED 8,000 and AED 10,000 per month. According to press reports on July 1st, 2009, this change to a minimum of AED 10,000 per month will be implemented, but possible exceptions for humanitarian cases could be made. The wife can only sponsor her husband if she is in a restricted list of professions for example teacher, doctor, engineer or equivalent. She must have a minimum salary of AED 5,000. Dubai rules might be more flexible on occupation if the wife is earning more than AED 10,000.”

Finding a decent place to live is quite difficult, but it is important to budget for the real costs of renting a new home. This typically includes having enough money to pay three to six months rent up front, security deposit, and utility connection fees.  Since your landlord will demand post-dated cheques for the entire year, you will need to open a checking account before becoming a tenant. If you are having difficulty finding a bank that suits your needs, just visit bayzat to compare options and choose one that fits the bill.

Decorating your newly acquired home is yet another chore that needs to be taken care of. A wise approach is to wait for the numerous shopping festivals or sales in the UAE. In addition, a number of home furnishing outlets such as IKEA offer payment via credit card with zero down payment. So if you don’t have a credit card yet, check out these cards from Emirates NBD to take advantage of their 0% Installment Plan.

When finding a school for your children, you have to take a number of items into account such as hiring the school bus (this can cost AED 8,000 anually per child) as opposed to dropping the kids off at school, paying for uniforms, and school stationery. As far as school ratings in Dubai are concerned, one can easily check out the Knowledge & Human Development Authority website for information and details pertaining to education.

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