Working and Living in Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Working and Living in Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Work permit, immigration and permanent residence

The work visa fee is AED 200 (plus additional costs) per year of issue and you must be invited by a private company. Foreign employees with permanent employment receive a residence and work permit.

The following documents are required for the application:

  • Application for residence signed by the sponsor / company
  • Copy of the trading license
  • Photocopy of the sponsor’s passport
  • Applicant’s passport
  • Approved medical examination that is valid for a maximum of 3 months
  • Emirates ID registration confirmation
  • Labor card issued by the Ministry of Labor

A stay is always associated with a job. It is not possible to get a permanent visa. If you lose your job, you are threatened with expulsion! You should be back to work within a month. Also keep in mind that there is no social security, pension or health insurance in Dubai. The 5-day week now also applies in Dubai. Friday (in general) and Saturday are usually free.

Currently, according to countryvv, wages in the construction and service sectors are around 300-400 euros per month. Qualified specialists are particularly in demand in the tourism and IT sectors, but medical specialists (pharmacists, doctors and nurses) are also in demand. You should be able to speak English well, better still Arabic. It is also imperative that you adapt to Islamic culture, otherwise you quickly run into problems (e.g. living together is only possible for married people).

Cost of living

Due to the lack of VAT, car purchases, for example, are very cheap. Gasoline is very cheap. Real estate is very expensive, but has been falling since the crisis. Some foods are expensive, especially those that are imported, while others are cheap, so you can buy something cheaper than in Germany if you pay attention to the price differences.

You need around € 3,993.42 (AED 17,793.51) in Dubai to maintain the same standard of living that you can have in Berlin with € 3,700.00 (assuming you rent in both cities).

  • Consumer prices in Dubai are 8.53% lower than in Berlin (excluding rent)
  • Consumer prices including rent in Dubai are 7.93% higher than in Berlin
  • Rental prices in Dubai are 45.53% higher than in Berlin
  • Restaurant prices in Dubai are 13.49% higher than in Berlin
  • Food prices in Dubai are 14.84% lower than in Berlin
  • The local purchasing power in Dubai is 5.48% lower than in Berlin

Average cost of living in Dubai (from 08/2019 – 07/2020)

Restaurant Ø € Price € Price from / to
Food, price w. restaurant 8.18 3.50-14.01
Middle class, 3 courses for 2 people. 46.72 28.03-93.43
Local beer, 0.5 l 10.51 7.01-12.85
Imported beer, 0.33 l 10.51 8.18-14.01
cappuccino 4.36 2.34-7.01
Coca / Pepsi (0.33 l) 0.94 0.58-2.57
Water (0.33 l) 0.37 0.23-1.17
Food Ø € Price € Price from / to
Milk (1 L) 1.36 0.93-2.34
White bread (500g) 1.12 0.70-1.87
Rice (white), (1kg) 1.58 0.93-3.04
Eggs (12) 2.46 1.40-4.20
Local cheese (1kg) 10.26 4.20-23.36
Chicken breast fillet (1kg) 7.05 2.80-11.68
Beef (1kg) 9.90 5.37-18.69
Apples (1kg) 1.84 0.93-2.80
Bananas (1kg) 1.49 0.93-2.34
Oranges (1kg) 1.60 0.82-2.80
Tomatoes (1kg) 1.22 0.70-2.10
Potatoes (1kg) 0.96 0.47 – 1.40
Onions (1kg) 0.82 0.47 – 1.40
Lettuce (1 head) 1.56 0.70-2.80
Water (1.5 l) 0.55 0.35-0.93
Bottle of wine (middle class) 14.60 8.18-25.69
Local beer (0.5 l) 3.76 1.64 – 7.01
Imported beer (0.33 l) 4.62 1.87-9.34

Average costs for local transport, utilities, clothing, leisure, education of Dubai (from 08/2019 – 07/2020)

Mode of Transport Ø € Price € Price from / to
One-time ticket 1.40 0.70-2.34
Monthly pass 70.07 42.04-88.76
Taxi base amount 2.80 1.28-2.92
Taxi 1 km 0.47 0.35-1.05
Ancillary housing costs Ø € Price € Price from / to
for 85 sqm apartment (electricity, water, garbage, etc. 145.59 93.43-233.58
1 minute prepaid mobile tariff 0.13 0.07-0.23
Internet (60 Mbps or more, unlimited data, cable / ADSL) 85.58 70.07-112.12
Clothes, shoes Ø € Price € Price from / to
Jeans (Levis 501 or similar) 52.45 23.36-98.38
Summer dress (Zara, H&M,… 46.15 23.36-81.75
Nike sports shoes, middle class 83.48 46.72-116.79
Leather business shoes 85.28 46.72-163.50
leisure time Ø € Price € Price from / to
Fitness center, month / adult 69.80 35.04-116.79
Tennis, 1 hour on weekends 29.69 12.85-46.72
a movie ticket 10.51 8.18-14.01
training Ø € Price € Price from / to
Preschool / Kindergarten, private, whole day, monthly per child 485.97 2333.58-864.23
International primary school per year and child 9,368.65 5,839.40-14,014.55

Average rental prices / purchase and salaries of Dubai (from 08/2019 – 07/2020)

Monthly rental price Ø € Price € Price from / to
Apartment (1 bedroom) in the city center 1,314.93 934.30 – 1,868.61
Apartment (1 bedroom) outside the center 866.90 700.73-1,167.88
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in the city center 2,664.60 1,838.61-4,204.36
Apartment (3 bedrooms) outside the center 1,886.66 1,401.45-2,980.55
Purchase price of apartments Ø € Price € Price from / to
Price per square meter for an apartment in the city – purchase 3,006.01 2,262.77-4,671.52
Price per square meter – apartment outside the center – purchase 1,988.26 1,508.51-2,919.70
wages Ø € Price € Price from / to
Average monthly salary (after taxes) 2,513.40

Living in Dubai – rules of survival in the Orient

So the goal is clear: it should be Dubai. The gigantic city in the Orient is not only a popular holiday destination, but also an ever-growing economic metropolis.

So if you want to emigrate there you don’t have to worry too much about getting a job. However, it is initially not easy for Western Europeans to find their way around the culture of the Orient. These tips can be helpful so that failure abroad is not preprogrammed.

1. Taking pictures

If you are out and about with your camera in Dubai, you shouldn’t snap wildly, even if it’s difficult with the numerous sights: Burj Khalifa, The Palm, Dubai Marina, Mall of the Emirates and and and. But no fear! The Dubai Must-Sees are of course allowed in front of the lens. However, photos of government buildings, property of the sheikh family, military installations and veiled women are prohibited. A detailed list of the Dubai sights that can be photographed can be found here.

2. Clothing

In Dubai, of course, a different dress code applies than in our regions. Here it says: women should avoid see-through fabrics, backless or shoulder-free tops, deep necklines and short skirts. Men should also not wear shorts or strapless shirts. The dress code is not mandatory, but you can be safe from staring if you dress appropriately. In shopping malls, if you show too much skin, you may even not be let in.

3. Language

Hindi and Arabic are most commonly heard on the streets of Dubai. However, you can also get on with English. Most Arabs speak good English so there is no need to learn any of the local languages.

4. Cost of Living

The groceries in the supermarket are about as expensive as in Germany. Those who go out to eat get away cheaper, and those who go to the market also buy. Toiletries, fruit and drinks are comparatively expensive. Telephoning and fuel are much cheaper than at home. You should also take into account that rents always have to be paid a year in advance.

Emigration and Living Dubai

Dubai is only for those who get a steady job through relationships or who have enough capital to invest. One should also live with the Islamic culture and be able to speak good English, better still Arabic. You can find an experience report HERE. Some advantages of the country: Immigrants quite satisfied, relatively safe from natural disasters, cost of living a little cheaper (LHK-I 95.2), tax advantage (KdS 0% Est).

Working and Living in Dubai, United Arab Emirates

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