Looking for family friendly compound preferably near the causeway.

Hello all,
Moving to Bahrain with my Wife and 6 yo Daughter this Summer. We are looking for a villa on a nice (preferably modern) compound that is good for kids with nice communal areas and space to play with (hopefully some) new friends.

I'll be working in Khobar so close to the causeway would be good. Our choices of schools include two in the causeway vicinity and one in Adliya so that area is an option also.

We've had somebody recommend Amwaj to us but not sure if this would be a bad move due to distance from causeway, I presume morning traffic isn't much fun?

Would anybody please be able to share some advice and give any recommendations?
Any advice much appreciated!

Sorry I forgot to mention budget, anything from 1000 to say 1800 Dinar for a gem of a place

what are your anticipated causeway commute times? if it's anything like an 8-5, rush hour Bahrain traffic will make living near the Causeway more critical for you than not.

Good question of which I don't have the answer I'm afraid. I know I'll be working for Aramco, not sure if I start at 7am

Hello dadofduck,

Could you please post an ad in our housing section: Houses for rent in Bahrain , as it is the appropriate section for those seeking housing rentals.  You may also browse this section and see whether a compound might interest you.

Thank you


I can give you definitive details of travel times etc if you work at Aramco as I've been doing that commute for about a year and a half now. You can pretty much choose anywhere near the Causeway highway to live from Juffair on over. I would avoid Amwaj. It's just too far out.

Most of us at Aramco leave at around 5:30am and get home between 5 and 6:30 depending on whether it's normal or evil. It varies. Saudi school holidays are the worst days... and the run up to Eids... and when they decide to put three 16 year olds on customs ... and when... well, you get the picture!

Brilliant thanks Suburbansam (you can't imagine how many times my iPhone tried to autocorrect that). Are you in an office in Khobar? I do not know the specific office, have just been told it's the offshore dept., Khobar.
I've got a few more queries if you don't mind seeing as you're in a similar situation as me? Even though you're employed in KSA do/can you get a Bahrain CPR? I'm wondering about complications with renting a place, buying a car, getting a shipment (personal effects) into the country.



Sorry about that, newbie mistake! I've posted it in the right place now.

I'm in Dhahran not Khobar. No idea where Offshore are located. Khobar is closer than Dhahran so your commute may be quicker than mine.

Best you can get is a CPR number. You can't get the card if you are a Saudi resident. I tried to open a bank account with it at one place but they told me they wouldn't do it. I've heard rumours that other banks may do it. I bank in Saudi and, until the wife was employed here, used to come over with cash for Bahrain expenses.

Renting this place is totally straightforward. Don't even need a CPR number for that. In fact, a rental agreement is a prerequisite for the CPR number.

you must be able to buy a car without a proper CPR because I have friends in our situation who have Bahraini cars. I may be wrong. In any case, cars are much cheaper in Saudi and there's absolutely no bother having a Saudi car in Bahrain. You can have two cars per iqama so you could get a Saudi-reg car for your wife too. You might want to check out whether a Bahraini-reg car will be a hassle to get an Aramco sticker for.  Might depend on your department, but the guys here with Bahraini cars often have to through more hassle to get their gate stickers renewed each year. Best asking at work when you arrive here.

Are you direct hire? If so, won't you lose married status and its benefits by living in Bahrain?

No it's a single status package and unfortunately not direct but contract.

As for the bank issue, it looks like my Wife will be working in Bahrain so we can likely use her credentials.....

Thanks again for the help, really is much appreciated.

be aware that if you wife works in Bahrain it may take many months or even a year to get her CPR and therefore to be able to open a bank account. This seems particularly an issue for teachers as the ministry has a massive backlog.

In the meantime, she may get paid in cheques that she can use her passport to cash at banks or cash in hand. You can repatriate any extra cash through BFC (best rates I've found) for savings with a passport too.

You can hire a car with your passport so that's a quick and easy way to get transport and a Toyota Yaris or similar is usually about BD150 a month.

If you're contracted and have Bahraini plates, you might find gate passes more difficult to get each year. It's doable, just more hassle.

Right, I didn't know the CPR could be such an issue  :sosad: but thanks for the info.

If you had a choice of buying a Saudi car or Bahraini which would you choose? I've checked out and the car I was looking at was the same price either side so it's just a case of ease and maybe any possible issues crossing over the causeway??

The causeway won't make any difference either way as long as you own the car outright. If you get a lease agreement to pay off the car, you'll need paperwork to prove you have the owner's permission to take the car out of the country. That's simple enough to do.

If price is no issue, you need to think about a few things

1. You can't get an exit visa from Saudi unless you first get your car off your iqama by either selling it or exporting it, say, to Bahrain (= hassle). So, if you ever want to drop everything in Saudi and just get out, you'd have to leave your car behind or bring it over and have a virtually unsaleable vehicle in Bahrain. If that sounds over-dramatic, that's cos you haven't worked in Saudi before ;-)

2. How are you going to pay for it? If you have a bank account in Saudi, it's quite easy to get a low-interest loan to buy a Saudi car immediately. Otherwise, you'll have to save up for it at a time when your expenses are going to be high as you settle into Bahrain.

3. How often will you need to do the istimara (equivalent of MOT in UK)? In Saudi, a new car is exempt for the first three years. I don't know if that's the case in Bahrain or not. You can usually find some guy to do it for you while you're at work in Saudi although new regs mean that you may have to go in person. I'll find out in September! You'll need to find out the requirements in Bahrain and whether it's open at the weekend.

4. Servicing. I get mine serviced in Bahrain because Mazda here open on Saturdays. They don't in Saudi even though it's 2/3 the price. You should find out what servicing options are available and where you need to go to get a service so you can decide which might be the best bet for you.

I don't have experience running my own car in Bahrain. If I were you, I'd start a new thread for this if you have more specific questions.

Cheers, sounds like good advice, I'll start up something new to get more  :top:

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your villa is not in an ideal location for the OP.

Living in Amwaj as compared to Saar/Hamala/Janabiyah will add around 25-30 mins to the drive even when the traffic is light.

This is time that the OP would, I'm sure, prefer to spend with his family despite your desire for him to rent your villa.  ;)

Dead right!

Its name amwaj islands means its not same :)
Just google it u will know the diffrent its not city its islands
And why not if i will rent him
He is the one looking villa for rent !!

Hi I can recommend an Agent who will find you the right villa in the right area! Just let me know and I'll pass on the details. She took my brief and stuck to it. Only showed me properties that matched my budget and requirements. You will want to be near to the Causeway and schools. Amwaj is too far away for you unless you are going to stay over in Saudi during the week. I used to live on Amwaj but the traffic is a nightmare. If you want to live near the beach there are places closer to the Causeway. We live on a compound in Budaiya on the beach with a boat mooring. But there are a lot of family friendly compounds within your budget. Utility bills here have recently doubled so be aware of that when you are looking. Green gardens can use a lot of water if it isn't included in the rental price.

Thanks Bagpus, much appreciated!

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