skip to Main Content
+44 (0) 20 3837 5999  

Pros & Cons of Living in Dubai

Dubai has recently become a popular expat destination due to tax-free earnings and the luxury lifestyle, but you should think carefully before deciding to move to Dubai. Although there are undoubtedly some pros to moving to Dubai, there are also a number of potential cons you should be aware of too. The top 6 pros and cons we discuss are listed below;

  • Pro: Diverse multinational expat community
  • Con: Strict laws relating to religious practices
  • Pro: Low tax rates and high pay
  • Con: Extreme heat during Dubai summer
  • Pro: Lots of career growth and prospects
  • Con: Somewhat unstable political outlook

Our guide takes you through the pros and cons of living in Dubai as an expat and what to look out for. We have put together some of the key things you should know but there are, of course, more factors to consider. If you are planning on moving to Dubai then read on before taking your first step in the international move.

Pro: Diverse multinational expat community

A recent survey in 2019 suggests that out of 9.2 million people living in Dubai, only 1.4 million of these were indigenous. This would mean that only 15% of the population are local Emiratis, so a huge percentage of the workforce is made up of foreigners. However, it is important to consider that a large number of Asian workers are employed in construction and hospitality, with a lot of these people coming from India and Pakistan. Western expats make up around 5% of the population, so a lot smaller but nevertheless a growing community in Dubai.

Living in Dubai Pros and Cons for Every Expat - Gerson

Con: Strict laws relating to religious practices

Dubai is a Muslim country, therefore some of the rules and laws can seem strict to those used to a more western lifestyle. Some of the things you shouldn’t do in Dubai include public displays of affection, dressing inappropriately or being visibly drunk in public. As a Muslim country, people living in Dubai are seen as somewhat conservative and this should be respected when you are in public.

Con: Strict laws relating to religious practices

Dubai is a Muslim country, therefore some of the rules and laws can seem strict to those used to a more western lifestyle. Some of the things you shouldn’t do in Dubai include public displays of affection, dressing inappropriately or being visibly drunk in public. As a Muslim country, people living in Dubai are seen as somewhat conservative and this should be respected when you are in public.

Although not always enforced, there have been cases of tourists and expats being arrested for kissing in public. It is worth thoroughly researching these local laws and rules to make sure you are comfortable with them before moving to the country.

Huge temple in Dubai lit up against a pink and blue sky

Pro: Low tax rates and high pay

One of the critical reasons that Dubai has seen a flock of expats moving to the country is due to the relatively low taxes and competitive pay. For many people, keeping more of the money they earn is a priority and if you plan on living in Dubai for a fixed period, you may be able to save significantly more of your disposable income.

Individuals who are UAE nationals only pay 5% individual tax, while the employer covers the other 12.5% contribution to social services. This is particularly appealing considering some of the high salaries on offer and can play a large part in people moving to Dubai.

Con: Extreme heat during Dubai Summer

Although the idea of warm weather all year is appealing to some, it is important to consider just how hot the Dubai summers can get. Although winter weather is often comfortable at an average of 20-25°C, the summer months regularly see extreme heat, on average between 35-40°C. Temperatures can often exceed 40°C too, which can be simply unbearable for some. You should be prepared to spend more time indoors with air conditioning due to extreme temperatures, so if you are an outdoors person all year round Dubai might not be for you.

Men leading camels over a white sand beach in front of Dubai’s skyscrapers

Pro: Lots of career growth and prospects

Dubai is a global business hub and has support from neighbouring Abu Dhabi. Between the two destinations, there are thousands of multinational companies and employers. This means there is a great deal of potential career growth and prospects for employment.

If you do well in Dubai then you could see opportunities to move again back to a western country in a more senior position. This makes Dubai a great option for developing yourself professionally, with plenty of options to move forward.

Cons: Somewhat unstable political outlook

Although this isn’t something that should be of huge concern, it is still worth considering the political outlook in Dubai. The city is the most populated in the United Arab Emirates but is just one of many cities that act somewhat autonomously. The 2008 crash saw Abu Dhabi support the city of Dubai financially and there are fears more bailouts might be needed following the coronavirus pandemic. As mentioned, this isn’t a huge concern as Dubai remains a significant global business hub and it is likely their rich neighbours would provide support where needed.

Our above guide is intended to give you some points to think about before deciding on moving to Dubai, but it is also important that you conduct your own research. If you are planning to go ahead with a move though, make sure you get in touch with Gerson Relocation. Emigrating is a huge task to undertake so it is important you seek professional help from experienced international removers.

    Average customer rating:   4.8/5

    REQUEST A QUOTE




    Back To Top
    0 Shares
    Share via
    Copy link
    Powered by Social Snap