A Guide for Expats Planning to Move to Dubai

While moving to a foreign destination is generally considered to be a stressful and complicated affair, shifting to Dubai is a comparatively simpler affair due to the presence of large number of expats in the country, as well as the expat-friendly policies of the government.

Contrary to popular perception, moving to Dubai need not be a very expensive affair, provided you plan your shift in a systematic and sensible manner. Read ahead for a quick overview of all important points that an expat must consider when moving to Dubai.

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Visa and Employment

While short-term entry may be granted without a visa, expats planning to reside in Dubai for a longer duration must have a job in Dubai, and a visa to enter and stay in the country. Make sure you negotiate these formalities with your employer before moving to Dubai.

Health Tests

The UAE grants visas to expats subject to negative results of medical tests for HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and Hepatitis B.

Finding a Home in Dubai

Until recently, only citizens of Dubai were permitted to buy property in the country. Hence, expats had no option but to opt for long-term or short-term leases when searching for property. Today, the laws have been changed and expats also are permitted to buy property in Dubai. However, it is advisable to opt for rental accommodation in the beginning before considering a purchase of property in a foreign country.

Homeowners often require tenants to pay the entire year’s rent upfront. While you have the option of negotiating with the landlord, keep this possibility in mind when searching for homes in Dubai.

Dubai offers numerous residential options ranging from flats in tower blocks, penthouses, independent villas, to big luxurious bungalows. With numerous online resources facilitating easy research, make sure you compare your property options in advance before moving to Dubai.

Taxation

Dubai has a very liberal tax regime. So, you may not be required to pay income tax in the country. However, you may be required to pay certain duties and fees in relation to your residence, use of an automobile and completion of visa-related formalities. One negative consequence of the liberal tax regime is that there is very little government subsidy available for basic facilities and amenities. So, be prepared to spend for healthcare and other basic needs from your own pocket. You can opt for health insurance to minimize the financial impact of enjoying quality healthcare in Dubai.

Local Laws 

Although more liberal as compared to other Islamic nations, Dubai has strict local laws governing the consumption of alcohol, public display of affection, consumption of drugs, and choice of attire. Make sure you pay extra attention to applicable local laws, especially during the holy month of Ramadan.

Conclusion

Dubai is a prosperous city that has developed very quickly be offering a quality standard of living to its citizens as well expats. Moving to Dubai has become a lot easier considering that a lot of information is available online. Further, one can use online resources to compare rental accommodation and finalize the choice so that accommodation is not a problem when moving to Dubai.

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