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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys,
this is my first post - last week I was offered the opportunity to work in Abu Dhabi from my Company - I accepted the offer without knowing too much about the City !! :)

I am really looking forward to the experience but I have a lot of questions, especially regarding my Girlfriend - she is very unsure how life for an expat woman is in Abu Dhabi and wether she should join me over there!

MY main questions right now are:

- do we have to get married before we can live together in a house / flat?
- is it accepted and easy for women to find jobs?
- is she allowed to work, drive, move around freely, dress like she wants?
- is there anything that you would tell a european woman to consider before moving to Abu Dhabi?
- will she be able to work without us being married?
- is there a good forum for abu dhabi women that you can share with me?

also a few questions about cost of living and general basic things
- what should my salary be so that I can have a nice house/Flat, car, enjoy myself (eat out in restaurants from time to time...) and have the possibility of saving something - in EUR ? per month?
- do you have some tipps about areas to live in abu dhabi or recommendation of some articles that describe live generally for a couple?


Thanks a lot for your help - I hope you take the time to help me out. Also if those questions are already answered somewhere else in this forum please point me into the right direction!

Best
Wardrobechaos :)
 

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Abu Dhabi is more strict then Dubai. Less western expats but still a good mix. If you are going to live illegally together, then I would suggest living in an area that is mostly western expats. Personally though, my recommendation is not to do that. It is illegal.

It is easy enough for a woman to find a job, especially if she has training and qualifications. Keep in mind that the minimal training jobs are usually done by asians who will work for 1/4 of what a westernerd will.

She can work and drive and go about freely. This is a muslim country so your 'wife' should dress conservative. Nothing above the knees and tend to avoid having shoulders uncovered. That said, half the western expats are walking around in booty shorts and string tank tops in the malls.

But undergarments before you come if you have anything above a 'B' in breasts. Learn to deal with the staring, overall is not meant in a harmful or mean way.

She will either have to work to get a visa to live here, or hopefully she is from one of the countries where she can do monthly visa runs to Oman every 30 days to renew her tourist visa.

Can't say I would recommend the crazy abu dhabi women's forum at all. Only five min of reading those threads and you either are nuts like those people who think you have to treat your maid rudely to put them in their place,and jumeirah janes who think having to tell the maid to walk down to get the kids is too much effort... or you will use that site as a good laugh when you are bored.

For a single person, the gravy line overall in dubai is 10k dirhams, with accomodations and transportation provided. In abu dhabi, the housing is more expensive to live in nicer areas. You can check dubizzle for prices but a lot of the 'nice' looking one bedroom 60k apartments you find, are actually not that great of places. You will more likely find a nicer decent one bedroom in a good area for 80k+. If you want to be able to save a bit, and live the 'uae' lifestyle, then I would not suggest coming for anything less then 25k all in, or 15k with accomodations and transportation provided. And this is for a single person. Adding a non working spouse on, and that budget isnt going to allow much savings.
 

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First of all, welcome Wardrobechaos! I'm pretty new here too =)

Secondly, I'm really sorry for hijacking your thread! :eek: But I have a quick question for Jynxgirl:

If you want to be able to save a bit, and live the 'uae' lifestyle, then I would not suggest coming for anything less then 25k all in, or 15k with accomodations and transportation provided.
Can I just confirm what you mean by "25k"? Is that the salary in Euro's as the OP requested? Also, is that the salary per year?

Probably a silly question! But thanks anyway :)
 

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Dirhams, not euros. I don't know euros, so doesn't translate in my head to euros and would have to go to yahoo to do a online transfer to everyones home country if did that so usually respond in dirhams, and each person can translate it to their given currency.

That would be monthly.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hey guys - that information already helps a lot!

So that means we have to get married hu? At least this is clear now!

Can somebody maybe give me tipps on where to live in Abu Dhabi? What are the areas expats live in?

thanks!
 

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Where to live is really going to depend on what you are looking for. I would suggest when you get here, to stay in a serviced a hotel a few weeks and get a feel for what it is you are looking for. If you want traditional and quiet (but not as many western expats), al bateen area is very nice although you have to be comiing over on a big balla salary to afford to live there :) If you are on a little little balla and want quiet, then you may look at living off the island out in Khalifa city. It is more a mix but again, still not that many western expats out there as well. Downtown al markazeiahl area is in the thick of things and you will find everybody and anybody there, but not hardly any locals. Still not a very 'western' expat area but is a good mix of everyone. Is a big area and the buildings can be older and a bit run down or newer and luxurious. Prices also are ALL over the place in this area, which is why you have a mix of people making 6k a month to people who are making 50k a month. If you dont mind hustle and bustle ALL the time, and want to be in the thick of things, then the tourtist club area might be for you. Lots of little restaurants and grocery stores everywhere, close to the abu dhabi mall and the cinema. Always things to do. The corniches is a jaunt away but still walkable to get to from some locations within this area. Really not sure on rents here but again, same as before with old and new buildings so probly up and down.

Traffic is a bit crazy all over abu dhabi but because is such a compact island, even during traffic, going from one end to the other doesnt take too terribly long. Probly best to pick something though, that is nearer to work, rather then picking the area for other reasons.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
A soon to be colleague is living in the Khalidiya Palace Hotel (in the residency tower) and he likes it. But I guess I have to go there and see for myself as you said!

Can you recommmend any websites to look for a place to stay? same for events that are going on in Abu Dhabi like art, sports, cultural, concerts... ?

thanks so much for your help!
 

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A soon to be colleague is living in the Khalidiya Palace Hotel (in the residency tower) and he likes it. But I guess I have to go there and see for myself as you said!

Can you recommmend any websites to look for a place to stay? same for events that are going on in Abu Dhabi like art, sports, cultural, concerts... ?

thanks so much for your help!
You can search for aparment/villa listings on Property Real Estate for Sale and Rent. Jobs in the Middle East and North Africa , Free Classifieds in with Dubizzle.com, GNAds4U.com - Classifieds.

For event details you can check out timeoutabudhabi.com and Abu Dhabi eGovernment Gateway - Citizen - Abu Dhabi Tourism Events
 

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assuming that is for a single Jynx, what would you suggest is a respectable monthly salary for a family of four, all in?

and...Austin Rocks!
It does rock ;)

Families are usually bit different.

You will need to get education covered. Depending on age, it can be anywhere from 30 to 35k in first years, to 60k in the later years of education. Make sure you think will cover the education for period you are here for the amounts will cost to send your children to an appropriate western school.

Villas on outskirts can be more modestly priced, but sometimes that is a hardship when the school and work is in the interior of abu dhabi. If you live in the outskirts, you can find nice enough three bedroom villas for 130 to 150k. Interior will be quite a bit more for a villa or about that for a 3 bedroom apartment. Dubizzle will give you an idea of price ranges but keep in mind some of abu dhabi's buildings are subpar in the downtown area as older (window ac, mold, etc) so suggest going and looking. They dont exactly advertise this on dubizzle. You show up and find out the bargain isnt such a bargain ;)

I would suggest 30k is bare minimum in abu dhabi, with the housing and education covered though, for a family with two children, living a decent life.
 

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Hi all,

Jynxgirl, thank you for the response. Just a quick on... Where do I find the 'expat woman' forum. I've read you mention it several times and I'm fairly amused by it. We're looking at hiring a maid/nanny to look after our daughter whilst we work and I've been told that it has a lot of threads on maids on there (albeit weird views!!!). Any assistance would be appreciated.
 

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OfftoSharjah said:
Hi all,

Jynxgirl, thank you for the response. Just a quick on... Where do I find the 'expat woman' forum. I've read you mention it several times and I'm fairly amused by it. We're looking at hiring a maid/nanny to look after our daughter whilst we work and I've been told that it has a lot of threads on maids on there (albeit weird views!!!). Any assistance would be appreciated.
Nooooooo, if there's one thing you never do on here is to mention THAT website  and, joking aside, I honestly don't think you read anything posted by JynxGirl about it....
 

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Hey, not saying that she posts on it... You know... Any publicity is good publicity theory.... Just got curious as to why everyone is so dead set against it.
 
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