Living in the United Arab Emirates guide

Find out all you need to know to relocate and live in the United Arab Emirates with the expat guide

Write an article


General information
  • Stretching over an area of 82 880 km2, the United Arab Emirates are one of the world's most densely populated countries. Its population amounts to more than 8 million inhabitants, including a majority of expatriates. The official language of the UAE is Arabic but English is currently spoken.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • Learn how is it like to live and work in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

    Article written by teflguide
  • Certain practices, body language signs and customs may differ from those at home; therefore it is always a good idea to get your social etiquette right before visiting another country. Remember that the UAE accommodate people from various ethnic and religious backgrounds.

    Article written by FeeAcer
  • Arabian Calligraphy, a primary form of art for written Islamic visual expression.

    Article written by abudhabitempo


Visas, passports and entry requirements
  • Whatever your nationality is, you can get married in the UAE according to Sharia. There is no civil marriage, but you can register your wedding at the embassy or consulate of your country of origin in the United Arab Emirates.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • Middle East countries nationals are exempted from visas to travel to the United Arab Emirates. Nationals of some countries such as France, the United Kingdom, the United States or Germany will obtain a 30 day visa on arrival.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • What do I need to enter Dubai? Do I need a passport, a visa, a valid ID?

    Article written by


Work visas, work permits, working holiday visas and residence permits
  • If you intend to live and work in Dubai, a work visa is mandatory. You must get a work contract or a valid job offer before going ahead with your visa application.

    Article written by
  • If you are going to the United Arab Emirates for a short stay, you can choose between different types of visas. You must first determine whether you need a visitor visa, a tourist visa or an urgent mission entry visa.

    Article written by Veedushi


Labour market, how to find a job
  • There are various ways to start a business in the United Arab Emirates as well as many advantages: there is no corporate tax and no value-added tax. You will however have to find local partners and invest a minimum capital of 150,000 dirhams.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • To get hired in the city of Al Ain, you must have skills that are not available locally and especially a solid professional experience. The major recruting sectors include industry, services and tourism.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • To find a job as an expat in Fujairah, you can focus your search on fisheries, food processing, tourism and free zone, which are expanding.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • You can get hired in different sectors in Ras Al-Khaimah, especially in industry, commerce and agri-business. The free zone has also been developing rapidly in the region in recent years.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • Fields with high employment potential in the city of Abu Dhabi are fossil fuels, renewable energy and desalination of sea water. It is also possible to find a job in the tourism, finance, food and real estate sectors.

    Article written by Veedushi


How to rent a house or an apartment, leases and rental agreements
  • You can easily find accommodation in the city of Ras Al-Khaimah. A wide choice is offered to you: studios, apartments, houses and villas in residence. Rent

    Article written by Veedushi
  • In Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates, you will find different types of accommodation: studios, apartments, villas and compound residences. Local authorities are actually aiming towards the construction of thousands of new homes in the next few years.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • In the United Arab Emirates, you will find different types of very recent and even brand-new accommodation. You can rent an apartment or a villa with facilities, depending on your preferences and your budget. The lease is generally for one year.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • Is it possible to buy a property in Dubai? Since 2002, foreigners can buy properties in Dubai.

    Article written by Julien
  • To find a house or an apartment to rent in Dubai, the best approach is to visit a serious real estate agency. Check classified ads in the papers or check with your company, with your colleagues or with your local ?network?.

    Article written by Julien


Student visa, University registration
  • Education is free at all levels in the United Arab Emirates. To enroll in a school or university, choose the program that best suits you and send your application. The courses offered meet international standards.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • Many private higher education institutions are available to foreigners wishing to study in Dubai.

    Article written by Julien

Health care

Public and private health systems
  • The United Arab Emirates have a health care system that meets international standards. You can access to public and private hospitals as well as clinics. You are also advised to subscribe to a health insurance before departure.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • I?m I eligible to the public health care system in Dubai? Should I get a private health insurance?

    Article written by Julien
  • You need to keep this list of Abu Dhabi Hospitals handy for emergencies and health related inquiries.

    Article written by abudhabitempo


Open and manage a bank account
  • To open a bank account in the United Arab Emirates, you must absolutely have a residence visa. You can open an account in dirhams as well as in foreign currency. You will consequently obtain a debit card and credit card.

    Article written by Veedushi


Tax system, income tax
  • Taxation in the United Arab Emirates is almost nonexistent. There is no tax on individual income, or value-added tax (VAT). Companies are however subject to a municipal tax.

    Article written by Veedushi


Train, bus, plane, car rental

Driver's licence

Driving requirements
  • Nationals of some countries can drive through the United Arab Emirates with their current driver's license. You also have the opportunity to drive with a valid international driver's license. If you plan to settle in the country, you have to apply for a United Arab Emirates driver's licence.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • Is my driver?s license valid in UAE? To drive in Dubai and in the UAE, you need a local driver's license. Most foreign licenses are not accepted in the emirate. However, a list of 36 countries was drawn up for which no driving test is required.

    Article written by Julien
  • The information contained in this article mainly concerns Ras Al Khaimah but the advises given can be applied to the other Emirates as well!

    Article written by FeeAcer


moving, formalities and useful tips
  • If you wish to ship your personal effects to Dubai, you can call upon the services of a professional carrier. Shipping your stuff by sea is obviously slower than by air, but cost are much cheaper.

    Article written by Julien
  • What you can bring and prohibited items in Dubai.

    Article written by Julien


Phone line, internet provider, post office
  • To access the Internet in the United Arab Emirates, you can choose between narrowband and broadband. You can subscribe to a service provider as from 100 dirhams. You can also opt for wireless connection, Wi-Fi, as well as Internet cafes.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • The United Arab Emirates have only two telephone service providers. However, the telecommunications system is growing rapidly in the country since a few years. Both service providers offer discounted rates on Fridays as well as on public holidays.

    Article written by Veedushi


Sports, leisure and cultural activities
  • Sitting down by the balcony with a coffee in hand, it seemed all so unusual to me to sit amidst towering concrete and bustling traffic and uncannily think that just an hour from here, there is a tiny city out there where life is just the way its supposed to be. With calm beaches and untouched mangro

    Article written by vblogics
  • If you are stopping by the United Arab Emirates or if you are settling there, you might want to discover the wonders of the country. You will be delighted to visit the various places of interest and theme parks.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • Traditional dhows in United Arab Emirates

    Article written by abudhabitempo
  • The United Arab Emirates do not have an elaborate system of kindergartens. But you can find child care centers and nursery schools. Most parents however prefer to leave their children with a nanny.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • You can move to the United Arab Emirates with your pets provided they comply with the regulations in terms of import. You must be in possession of vaccination and health certificates for your pets. Fees apply.

    Article written by Veedushi
  • Dubai’s long, hot summers can be a killer – on the sanity and the wallet! Here are a few of the activities I devised to entertain my three energetic, ‘sun, sand and sport’ deprived children over the last ten weeks – without spending a fortune!

    Article written by gillybean1972
  • Is it not true, that with communications , transport and the ubiquitous internet that we are all now global citizens playing in a global market. We live and work in different countries; we travel to foreign lands to conduct business.

    Article written by Dune doula

Questions and answers about the United Arab Emirates

Ask your question
I want to report undocumented ofw
By Enna414
Faten Ben Salem
Happy to join your forum
By Faten Ben Salem
Shubash Chetan
Regarding the dubai municipality exam
By Shubash Chetan
21000 AED and saving
By TheCrabCrib

Moving to the United Arab Emirates

Find tips from professionals about moving to the United Arab Emirates

Travel insurance in the United Arab Emirates

Enjoy a stress-free travel across the United Arab Emirates

Flights to the United Arab Emirates

Find the best prices for your flight tickets to the United Arab Emirates