The number of expats migrating to Dubai witnesses an upsurge with each passing year. Dubai is an attractive and favored destination. About 85 percent out of the 3.1 million of Dubai’s population is foreign. Many people move to a city like Dubai just to add that correct amount of spice in their lives. These people obviously take a leap of faith by moving to a country where the lifestyle and tradition are poles apart from those back in their own country.
Dubai has held its reputation of being a city of glamour and glitz for long, but not without complications. It has its own bureaucratic rules and entirely different and complex practices (at times even ridiculous) which can make pulling off a simple task extremely difficult. That’s when your excitement and passion could easily turn into irritation and disorientation.
As a person moving to Dubai, you need some tips that would assist you to ease your transition. So here’s my quick guide for you:
Your documentation should be in order
Since you plan to obtain a residential visa, you have to know about the various processes and procedures to be followed. This would require a ton of documents and getting them attested from your home country is necessary for them to be acceptable. Some of the most common documents that you will need are:
- Educational degree certificates including courses, diplomas – attested by the respective institutions in your home country.
- Professional qualification certificate
- Marriage certificate (attested)
- Divorce certificate – if suitable
- Attested birth certificates of all the family members
- Medical records
- Original driving license or an International Driving License
- Original passports of you and your family members with at least one completely empty page for your visa and more than 6 months validity.
- Passport-sized photographs – keep at least 2-3 dozen of these as they would be required everywhere.
Keep photocopies of all the above documents in handy. You should keep at least 5 sets, so you can just hand them over as and when necessary.
Have a sufficient amount of money with you
Financial planning is necessary if you want to avoid stress in your new adventure. You need to have money that would suffice for 3 months at least while you look for a job. A point worth remembering is that you cannot open a bank account without a residency visa.
Your total monthly expenditure on necessities would be around 7,200 AED inclusive of food, accommodation, and mobile phones. You can bring in funds into this country in numerous ways. But if you prefer leaving your funds back at home, you can use any of the innumerable ATMs or banks to withdraw cash. There are places where foreign currencies are exchanged.
1 AED = 0.27 USD
Get yourself a driving license
You have to be capable of moving quickly and being the driver yourself can make this a whole lot easier. You can get yourself an International driving license from your home country and apply for a UAE driver’s license as soon as you get your residential visa.
Also, there are around 33 countries whose citizens can convert their license into a UAE driver’s license automatically!
Subscribe for a car instead of buying one
Buying a car can cost you immensely in the first few months of moving in, especially when you are still looking for your source of income. Subscribing for a car rental service can grant you similar benefits at a much larger cost. Plus, you get to choose a new car every month with easy monthly car rental services in Dubai.
Research education opportunities in Dubai
In case you are moving into Dubai with your family, start considering schools ASAP because most reputed schools have lengthy waiting lists. You must know that admission as well as registration fees are non-refundable!
Open a bank account
You can open a non-resident bank account even without your residential visa in some banks, but these are usually restricted to savings and deposits. But beware because a bounced check is considered a criminal offense in Dubai!
Look for a suitable job
A major lot of companies endorse their jobs over the Internet. In fact, while in Dubai, it would be easier for you to land a job by submitting your CV online than by walk-in interviews. Dubai’s business regions are very much accessible by public transport, (buses, trains, etc.) so don’t worry if you don’t own your private car yet!
Amidst all this, don’t forget to enjoy this new phase of your life. Meet your fellow expats over coffee, communicate and start building a life!