current social situation in Kabul

I have been offered a job working in the private sector in Kabul.  I will be living and working in the city itself. I am trying to get an understanding of what the social / freedom of life in like currently in the city. I am a single female,and I would like to know if its possible to get out and about to the hotels and markets on weeekends. Are trips outside of the city  - to Panshir, for example posssible to do? Are there any supermarkets and shops aimed at western foreigners. thanks in advance for advice and suggestions.

Wow, now that's what I call an adventure; a single female traveling to Kabul for work.

Good on ya.  When you have the city scoped out, let us know.  We are probably a few months behind you.


I don't have any answers for you but I am in the same situation --a single female who has been offered a position in the private sector in Kabul.  Would you be interested in sharing information with one another as we find answers to our questions?

Good luck in making your decision.


Hi Destabee

What sector of business do you work in?
Im in marketing / PR

As of today, I got a 2nd job offer in kabul - within an NGO, that I think I prefer ...

By all means let us keep in contact and see what we can learn
Are you going for sure - Im still undecided as Ive also got job ofers here in Libya, where I am currently ...Hard choice, hey?

Let me kow how it goe with you


I work in higher education.  I would say that I am probably going.  I have a few followup questions to the original offer but assuming no problems with those I expect to accept.

Sounds like a good job ...
Where are you now? Where are you from ?
What do they say ur living accomodation situation is like?
For me, its in guest houses with tansport to/from office

the private sector job has said no to walking around freely but the NGO doenst seem so strict ..In any case, i have some friends already working in kabul, so I am sure there are
things one can do and enjoy freely in spare time/weekends. ..

I know its a hard place, but the media doenst help as they ony report the bad things - but for sure, things there are worse then say 6 mos ago ...

BYW way, there is a spinney's supermarket there, its from dubai, and they stock all the usual western things you would expect to find in a supermarket, which is good to know ...

When would u reort to kabul?


My accommodations are similar but with the security restrictions. I would start at the beginning of August--assuming the paperwork doesn't delay things. I would be coming from the United States.

I will let you know what I decide
Ive currently got 4 job offers - two here in libya and 2 there ..
Tough decisions to make!!!  and all this after being un-employed for the last 11 mos!!! 

I wish both of you the best of luck.

I should have news of my first opportunity within the week...perhaps to be in Kabul as early as 4 weeks from today.

I agree that the media has reported only the bad things that happen here.  I've been in country and Kabul since March, and outside of the usual disturbances, it's not all that bad.  It is a culture shock coming from Peoria, IL to here, but you get used to it.

It's been a few time you've posted this topic, are you now living in Kaboul?
I've been offered an mission for a NGO, 3 monthes in Kaboul. It's a very intersting mission and a good opportunity for me. I'll live in a guesthouse with other expatriates. Like you, with very high security conditions.
A have to make my decision on tuesday (next week), so can you tell me how is living in Kaboul? Do you constantly live in fear?! Can you have extra activities sometimes? In definitive, how is your expat'life over there?
Thanks for your answer!


I am sorry I was not able to respond before you had to make a decision. I do not yet have internet at the guesthouse where I am staying giving me little time to be online. 

It is too soon for me to give an general assessment of my life here in Kabul.  I arrived about 2.5 weeks ago to a guesthouse that wasn't fully ready for guests.  I have not felt in danger since being hear.  The only moments of worry had to do with traffic not violence. 

I have been out to eat at a couple of places - one I recommend highly.  That is Sufi.  I have been shopping at the new, new Finest and the new Finest supermarkets and spent a bit of time on Flower Street. 

Between Ramadan and the start of the semester things have yet to settle into a routine so I haven't ventured out beyond those things.

I agree with Destabee...seems as though you have more to worry about with traffic in the city than you do from anything else.  I haven't really felt "threatened" at all by being here.  Being here for 6 months, have actually located where the good places are to dine, and hang out, instead of being stuck in the house all the time.  If you do that, you'll go nuts.

Thanx for your answers! I've accepted the mission one week ago. So I'm going to Kaboul the 1st october. I'm very happy and serene. I hope everything's going all right for you! Perhaps we will have the chance to meet us!

taoann :

Thanx for your answers! I've accepted the mission one week ago. So I'm going to Kaboul the 1st october. I'm very happy and serene. I hope everything's going all right for you! Perhaps we will have the chance to meet us!

Congratulations. I am not sure how much information I have to offer but feel free to ask if you have more questions and I will share what I can.

MEtravel :

Hi Destabee

What sector of business do you work in?
Im in marketing / PR

As of today, I got a 2nd job offer in kabul - within an NGO, that I think I prefer ...

By all means let us keep in contact and see what we can learn
Are you going for sure - Im still undecided as Ive also got job ofers here in Libya, where I am currently ...Hard choice, hey?

Let me kow how it goe with you


please let me know any places in kabul can work as normal human ??


my name is RAVI, currently i am working as a Computer System/Network Administrator in Tourist Hotel, i am looking for suitable job in Afghanistan.

Thanks & Best regards

Destabee :
taoann :

Thanx for your answers! I've accepted the mission one week ago. So I'm going to Kaboul the 1st october. I'm very happy and serene. I hope everything's going all right for you! Perhaps we will have the chance to meet us!

Congratulations. I am not sure how much information I have to offer but feel free to ask if you have more questions and I will share what I can.


do you know any places in Afghanistan having job vacancies list.



Ravi, your messages are completely :offtopic: in this discussion :whistle:
It might be more useful to post an ad in the Classifieds -> jobs section or check out the ads already published there.
Good luck

^ Agreed there, Fee.

I am heading to Kabul in less than 2 weeks and am looking forward to getting to know the city and enjoy it.

It would be nice if we could get a little community going here like we do on the Saudi portion of this forum; lots of ideas and questions and good discussions.

Hope to see you all soon.

(moderated: off topic + no ads please)

i think it is a bit dangrous to work in such city..right? :(

Hi there, I am also a single female who is currently considering a high level finance position in Kabul.  I am seriously considering this position, but would like to have some information on what it would be like to live there for 2 years.  I understand I will be staying at corp housing with transportation to and from work.  What is the work environment for women?  do the corporations respect women in the workplace?  Sounds like this is getting common.  Any insights or ? Thanks!

Hi and welcome to Ramie! :)

We hope that other members will be helpful to you and if you have other specific questions  don't hesitate to start a new topic on the Afghanistan forum ;)

Thanks and regards :)

It's quite likely that you'll mostly be working with other expats at the company, and it won't be an issue for you to be a woman.

As for the nationals, if they are working at an NGO, they will know/accept that westerners view women as equal, and so they will as well, on the surface.  You may have some quiet prejudice, such as it being easier for men to get something done than women, but it won't be anything overt.


Greeting from Kabul and answer to your question is YES it is safe for you to travel around but you will be needing a local guide who can drive you around.

Apart from this here are some good restaurants and shopping places which you can visit and do your shooing and all.

So my advise to you would be take it as i am here in Kabul for last 6 months.

Welcome to Expat-blog aamirali! :)


Thanks Christine,so what do u do?


All you "Kabulites"

I been to Kabul on different occasions for work - actually three times and will be on assignment again in Jan or Feb 2012.

On each occasion I've stayed at different plhaces - first up for two weeks at the company guest house (not the best place to be when all you seem to do is work/work/work and work right round the clock!!!)  The second time was at the Intercon before it got attacked last year - this was a reasonably good place to stay - only that the hotel was built like 40 years ago and is in need of refurbishment but by and large, it was okay!!!  Third time I stayed at Park Palace (whose sister concern was attacked previously where many Indians lost their lives).

During all the visits, there had been various attacks on government establishments and the last time I was there, Finest Supermarket in the Wazir Akbar area of Kabul was attacked where the head of Blackwater, his security and some shoppers were bumped off!!

As to walking out on t  he streets, I will not advise this to a single female working in Afghanistan although my office colleagues in Kabul do walk around and get their things done.

Would like to hear from people still in Kabul - may be catch a meal somewhere safe.


Hi Guys,

Im Indian 28 Yrs M, I have been offered a Job in Kabul (with Fat package + guest house)., i have been working in Dubai since 6 Yrs n find it grt.
But the role & Pkg offered to me is good & dont want to miss it.,
Will appreciate your suggestions on security & life over there.


Dear Vik

I am from Dubai and have been here in Kabul for the last 2 years - What can I say, its totally different, the opposite to Dubai, in fact.  Life is mostly only work, so you need to know what your leave policy will be - its advisable to be able to get out of Afg 3 to 4 times per year.  Social life is very limited - there are around 10 decent international restaurants/cafes located around town. Its important to know in advance what you security restrictions will be.  Int'l companies use private security companies, and these determine where you can go, and your ability to move around town.  Some are very strict and you can go almost nowhere, others are very reasonable - ask about this in advance. Unless you are happy to stay at home each night, then its no issue. There are house parties, once you get to know people in the international crowd, but again your access to live outsdie your office and guest house depend on your company's security arrangements.  There is no other nightlife to speak of and not much to do on Fridays either. There are a few tourist sights in Kabul, but once you have seen them, that is it. Will your job involve travel around Afg?  generally there are some nice places /cities in the North ( Mazar, herat, Bamyan) but the South is not safe, and foreigners must remain in bases.  In kabul, most foreigners live and work in an area called Wazir Akbar khan, so ask where you will be, as Kabul is a large city and spread out.  Its cold in winter (lots of snow this year), rain in spring, heat and dust in summer.  Ask if your guest house will have a gym, there are none really to speak of in Kabul and you will not get any excersise here, foreigners dont really walk on the streets too much. Currently in Kabul things were a bit tense last week due to American culteral insensitivity in burning copies of the Koran, - there were many demonstrations and sporadic violence, but it seemed to have calmed now. As an Indian , you will have an easier time, there is a large expat Indian population here.  Its a good place to come if your aim is to save money and live quietly for a period of time.  There are interntaional super markets, and you can buy most products and food that you will need - but prices are more expensive than Dubai, as all is imported and war tends to inflate the economy. If you want good quality clothing, bring it with you, very little in terms of shopping here!  Hope this helps - ask your potential employer many questions about your accomodation, and security policy. Regards, Mare

Hello Vik

I can only say that I agree with what has been posted by ME Travel.  I have been to Kabul on four occasions for work and it has been only work - guest house/hotel to office and back with possibly a small detour to the supermarket to pick up some necessities!!

I am not aware of the house parties as my stay there was limited to two to three weeks at a time so hardly got to know any international crowd to be invited to parties.  But guess if you gonna be working there longer, then you would meet some international staff but one bit of warning - stay away from liaisons with Afghan women - you may have your "jewels" on a plate if you are caught messing around.

The current security situation is not the best so you need to take in a lot of things into consideration before you jump ship from Dubai. I know what Dubai nightlife is as I am based there and seeing that you will be leaving an open city for a totally different environment, you need to think carefully.  Are you prepared to sacrifice your social life, good quality of life in Dubai which I assume you enjoy, to come and be stuck in some guest house for three months before you can go on a weeks R&R?  This needs to be seriously considered. If you a drinker, think where you are gonna get your liquor - no idea whether it is sold freely in the supermarkets but I know places that serve liquor!!!

Cheers and good luck.

Thank you Guys for your suggestions..,

I have decided to move. I will be coming to Kabul somewhere around end of 3rd week..., Seen u soon !!!


Hi everybody.I am considering an offer in Kandahar with an NGO.The package offered its good but not sure if its comparable in Afghanistan.Can somebody tell me the salary range for a mid level manager in an NGO.

Thanks in advance.

hey all,,
i really would like to work in Kabul ,
i think working there will be so good for me.......

But am wondering ,how can i get a job offer to go there ?
U guys have experience there ,so can any one help me in
"how to apply for a job in Kabul"..?

Am fresh graduated of Software Engineering ,,but i have 2 years experience of Java & Android development and team leading..

Thank u all,,
Best of luck  :)

[at]Ala'a Agha Karss- you should post an advert in the jobs in Afghanistan section.

You won't necessarily get a company offering you work in Afghanistan.
Do an online search and see what comes up.Try NGO's. You be lucky enough to find a job but most companies like you to have had some overseas experience. 

Security is a big thing in Afghanistan and is not to be taken lightly. I worked all over the country for 2 years building roads and travelled continually armed in an armored vehicle with a bodyguard and 15 security personnel with me.

It depends on your situation.

Hello Friends !!

i have recently got a job offer to work as a General Manager - Marketing & Business Development.

so i havent recived my travel documents, as i could see so many posts her , i just want to know whats the current situation.

it would be great if someone can help me about the current situations.



Dear Raj
You dont give too much information as to what you want to know about Afghanistan, but your job sounds like a good one. Be sure to ask what your accomodation, security, and transport situation will be. Will you be in Kabul?  Ive enjoyed my time in Afg a lot, but I was lucky in that I lived like a normal person does anywhere else, not locked up in a villa or compound with a bunch of other expats, none of whom are allowed to go anywhere other then work or home due to their company security restrictions. if you are at all interested in the history, people, and culture of the country, this is no way to live ...Kabul has a decent social life with places to go and good house parties too. Its not a beautiful city, its very polluted and full of traffic, but if you can get away to mountains on weekends, these areas are beautiful.Summers are hot & dusty, winters very cold. You can get decent food in Kabul, and DVDs, but keep in mind, there are no styish shops, cinema, or malls here! Most people just work and complain about Afghans and life in Afghanistan, but if you look and want to , you can find many nice things about the place, and Ive found the Afghan people to be polite, hard working, intelligent, hospitable, and fun.Security, bad incidents,  do happen from time to time, but you will learn what areas to avoid, and word goes out quickly if there is an incident going down, so you can avoid that area - police are quick to act and thorough in their work; they have to be. You have a much bigger chance to die in a traffic accident in your home country then in a bomb in kabul ...if however, your job is south in Kandahar or helmand, then disregard all Ive said here, that is a whole other story down there in the 'bad-lands!

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