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Hello,

I am new to this forum and have looked through other posts but I still have so many questions.

We are an international family (all hold British passports but I am Candian and my husband Colombian) with 2 children moving from Germany where we have lived for 4 years. My husband has just got a job with Barclays Capital and we expect to be in Dubai for 2 years (this often leads to longer as I am aware).

1. Areas- are there specific areas which are nice for expat families? I read that all areas are considered 'expat areas' but we really need to be near an international British school and would like to enjoy our time there. We did it the wrong way in Germany (temporary attitude from the beginning) and we regretted not having certain conveniences throughout our stay. We heard the RANCHES is nice but again, there are so many school options I don't know where to begin....


*NOTE we are going from 2 incomes to 1, we are NOT on an expat package and will therefore fund our own schooling etc. AND I will have our 3rd baby at the end of May & therefore be stuck around the home and looking for ease of commutes to and from the school.

2. BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOLS- Can anyone give me a list of good ones?? We have had some 'interesting experiences' here in Germany at our British school and I want to ensure that we do our homework this time around. ie. GOOD FACILITIES, GOOD CURRICULUM etc.

3. VILLAS- German homes literally comes with nothing. Do the villas come with fridge/stove/washer/dryer or will we have to purchase these items there?

4. CLOTHING- How cold will it get in winter?? Maybe a stupid question but we have WINTER coats - any point in bringing them with us? Perhaps we should look into storage options.

5. Are there lists of expat furniture for sale - second hand items? We would love to leave as much as possible behind and start from scratch but I need to know we can pick up some bargains. Here there is an American Women's club that lists furniture for sale of returning expats.


Sorry so many questions!! Any tips/suggestions you can give us would be fantastic. We almost moved to Dubai 2 years ago so we have really been reading up on as much as possible. With a newborn I certainly don't want any surprises.

THANK YOU!!!!

Carrie:):confused:
 

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BSME is 'Brtitish Schools in the Middle East' will list schools and links to their website. Schools vary widely in price and quality. The 'best' school have waiting lists and you may find it difficult to get your children in them. The main difference between them is the ones that run 'for profit' and the ones that do not....the latter tend to be the better as a general rule of thumb (although some people will dispute this) they pay their staff better and therefore command the best staff and experience.
xxxxx is another website to wade through for general stuff and help
Dubizzle.com is stuff to buy second hand...although second hand here could be as little as three months.
As for renting you can get fully furnished of unfurnished, you have to pay with a series of cheques, as a rule the less cheques the more likely you are to get a reduction; cheques are normally 1 (a year) best price to 5 a year. Deposit 5% plus normally agent commision.
Difficult to comment on where to stay, there are various areas ranging in price and distance to chosen school. I have been suprised how close everything is, 30 mins from one side of Dubai to the other, however.....the traffic is terrible, especially in particular areas where there is construction going on. Think M25 at rush hour, but not everywhere! I think there is a lot of exageration about traffic. Choose very carefully.
Hope this is helpful
 

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For a western expat family 2+2 living a modest lifestyle you need monthly all-in take home pay (excl annual stuff - bonus/tickets) of 40k.

If your expectations are for big 4+ BR villa, two nice cars and using all your vacation time abroad then you need closer to 60k.

Most new expats dig a hole financially for the first year getting set-up.

Other than that everything else will just happen, have a great time and welcome to UAE!
 

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It can pay to look beyond the obvious - I've been living in Al Qusais/Al Nahda now for 3 months and, despite having been told it wasn't very nice, I love it. Housing costs are very reasonable here, there are a great many international schools and it is an easy (and cheap) cab ride to pretty much anywhere. Even better, when the metro is fully open (another 4 months or so) we will have a metro stop on our doorstep. I understand Sharjah is very reasonable too, and a lot of the kids I teach (The Sheffield Private School - also very reasonable and educational standards have shot through the roof in the last 18 months) are bussed in from there.
 

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Hello,

I am new to this forum and have looked through other posts but I still have so many questions.

We are an international family (all hold British passports but I am Candian and my husband Colombian) with 2 children moving from Germany where we have lived for 4 years. My husband has just got a job with Barclays Capital and we expect to be in Dubai for 2 years (this often leads to longer as I am aware).

1. Areas- are there specific areas which are nice for expat families? I read that all areas are considered 'expat areas' but we really need to be near an international British school and would like to enjoy our time there. We did it the wrong way in Germany (temporary attitude from the beginning) and we regretted not having certain conveniences throughout our stay. We heard the RANCHES is nice but again, there are so many school options I don't know where to begin....
Before considering any areas you need to confirm your budget, as that will dictate what you can afford. Best to be fairly close to school to avoid having to spend too much time stuck in traffic

*NOTE we are going from 2 incomes to 1, we are NOT on an expat package and will therefore fund our own schooling etc. AND I will have our 3rd baby at the end of May & therefore be stuck around the home and looking for ease of commutes to and from the school. I do hope Barclays Capital will give you a very good package as the cost of rent and schooling here is high.

2. BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOLS- Can anyone give me a list of good ones?? We have had some 'interesting experiences' here in Germany at our British school and I want to ensure that we do our homework this time around. ie. GOOD FACILITIES, GOOD CURRICULUM etc. What ages are your children? There is some schooling info in the sticky thread at the top. Are you aware of how expensive school fees are here?

3. VILLAS- German homes literally comes with nothing. Do the villas come with fridge/stove/washer/dryer or will we have to purchase these items there? Generally unfurnished means totally unfurnished, without even white goods.

4. CLOTHING- How cold will it get in winter?? Maybe a stupid question but we have WINTER coats - any point in bringing them with us? Perhaps we should look into storage options. Unlikely you'll want winter coats but do bring jumpers and lighter jackets. It can drop to under 20 during the day and to 13 at night in January.

5. Are there lists of expat furniture for sale - second hand items? We would love to leave as much as possible behind and start from scratch but I need to know we can pick up some bargains. Here there is an American Women's club that lists furniture for sale of returning expats. Best places are a website called Dubizzle and aupermarket noticeboards. The classified section here also has a few ads

Sorry so many questions!! Any tips/suggestions you can give us would be fantastic. We almost moved to Dubai 2 years ago so we have really been reading up on as much as possible. With a newborn I certainly don't want any surprises.
Have you looked at hospital for the birth? Unless you have ongoing international medical cover you should think at paying for a package.
THANK YOU!!!!

Carrie:):confused:
Points answered above. Good luck and keep asking questions. :)

The area issue is tricky. Many people seem to like to new estates like Arabian Ranches or The Springs/Meadows/Lakes, whereas I prefer the more individual areas like Jumeirah and Umm Sequim. You need to think about schools and budget and work from there.

Will you be given compnany accommodation for a few weeks when you get here? It's always best to get to know a place a little before making a major decision.


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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you for all the great answers! I feel like it's all coming together.

It looks as though my husband will be working in the Emaar business park (bordering the LAKES) so we will likely start looking here. Does anyone know if Regent or JESS are quite far from the Lakes? I have heard good things about these schools but again, only what I have found on the internet. Again, looking for ease of commute and life, having 3 children with one being a newborn and arriving in the summertime is going to be a shock for me ;)

Anywhere else that is easily commutable to the Emaar business park that we should consider?

Does anyone love living in the Lakes?

Are any of you true expats carrying ALL your belongings with you? We are trying to decide whether so ship all of our winter clothes over there or pay for storage elsewhere in the world. Do Villas have basements? (ie. large enough for storing some boxes)

Above Alphaba asked if I knew the cost of schools was high. I actually think it is lower or comparable to what we are paying in Germany. It's outrageous here! My children at the time of our move will be 6, 3 and newborn so I will likely put the older two into the same school (nursery and year 1).

My husband will be given company accomodation for 4 weeks (I will be heavily pregnant and would rather not share this part of the move) but I am hoping that he will find something suitable and order our shipment over so at least we are semi-set up when I arrive with the kids.

Has anyone had a baby in Dubai?? This part makes me quite nervous. Besides the fact that I have read I won't be covered insurance-wise as I am already pregnant.


Thanks again for your great answers!! I will keep the questions coming :)

Carrie
 

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Thank you for all the great answers! I feel like it's all coming together.

It looks as though my husband will be working in the Emaar business park (bordering the LAKES) so we will likely start looking here. Does anyone know if Regent or JESS are quite far from the Lakes? I have heard good things about these schools but again, only what I have found on the internet. Again, looking for ease of commute and life, having 3 children with one being a newborn and arriving in the summertime is going to be a shock for me ;) Regent is just by one the entrances to The Lakes. I have friends with children there who are very happy.

Anywhere else that is easily commutable to the Emaar business park that we should consider? If you want a villa, then The Lakes, Springs, Meadows are closest. Other nearby areas with villas are Al Barsha, Al Sufouh and Umm Sequim (1,2,3) isn't that far. Ranches isn't a great distance either.

Does anyone love living in the Lakes? I have a few friends that live there, but it depends on what you want. Probaly most suitable for those with young children, but the houses all look very similar.

Are any of you true expats carrying ALL your belongings with you? We are trying to decide whether so ship all of our winter clothes over there or pay for storage elsewhere in the world. Do Villas have basements? (ie. large enough for storing some boxes) Yes, I am! :) No basements in villas.

Above Elphaba asked if I knew the cost of schools was high. I actually think it is lower or comparable to what we are paying in Germany. It's outrageous here! My children at the time of our move will be 6, 3 and newborn so I will likely put the older two into the same school (nursery and year 1). I think fees for eveb young childre start at around AED 22k per annum and rise with age and which school that attend.

My husband will be given company accomodation for 4 weeks (I will be heavily pregnant and would rather not share this part of the move) but I am hoping that he will find something suitable and order our shipment over so at least we are semi-set up when I arrive with the kids.

Has anyone had a baby in Dubai?? This part makes me quite nervous. Besides the fact that I have read I won't be covered insurance-wise as I am already pregnant. Lots of my friends have had babies here , so please don't worry. If you are likely to be in Lakes area, the hospitals to look at are Medcare and Cedars Jebel Ali. If you are expecting any complications that the Al Wasl Govt hospital is best. Make appt with a few obs/gyn upon arrival, see who you like and go where they are. Lots of good GPs too. Note that certain company plans do offer cover for existing pregnancies - depends on the scheme

Thanks again for your great answers!! I will keep the questions coming :)

Carrie
Answered in blue, above.
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Hello,

I am new to this forum and have looked through other posts but I still have so many questions.

2. BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOLS- Can anyone give me a list of good ones?? We have had some 'interesting experiences' here in Germany at our British school and I want to ensure that we do our homework this time around. ie. GOOD FACILITIES, GOOD CURRICULUM etc.

Carrie:):confused:

I can recommend Regent International School, Jumeirah Primary School, Jumeirah English Speaking School and Dubai English Speaking School. All follow the British curriculum, have good facilities, and UK teachers and management.
 

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greetings

Hello,

I am new to this forum and have looked through other posts but I still have so many questions.

We are an international family (all hold British passports but I am Candian and my husband Colombian) with 2 children moving from Germany where we have lived for 4 years. My husband has just got a job with Barclays Capital and we expect to be in Dubai for 2 years (this often leads to longer as I am aware).

1. Areas- are there specific areas which are nice for expat families? I read that all areas are considered 'expat areas' but we really need to be near an international British school and would like to enjoy our time there. We did it the wrong way in Germany (temporary attitude from the beginning) and we regretted not having certain conveniences throughout our stay. We heard the RANCHES is nice but again, there are so many school options I don't know where to begin....


*NOTE we are going from 2 incomes to 1, we are NOT on an expat package and will therefore fund our own schooling etc. AND I will have our 3rd baby at the end of May & therefore be stuck around the home and looking for ease of commutes to and from the school.

2. BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOLS- Can anyone give me a list of good ones?? We have had some 'interesting experiences' here in Germany at our British school and I want to ensure that we do our homework this time around. ie. GOOD FACILITIES, GOOD CURRICULUM etc.

3. VILLAS- German homes literally comes with nothing. Do the villas come with fridge/stove/washer/dryer or will we have to purchase these items there?

4. CLOTHING- How cold will it get in winter?? Maybe a stupid question but we have WINTER coats - any point in bringing them with us? Perhaps we should look into storage options.

5. Are there lists of expat furniture for sale - second hand items? We would love to leave as much as possible behind and start from scratch but I need to know we can pick up some bargains. Here there is an American Women's club that lists furniture for sale of returning expats.


Sorry so many questions!! Any tips/suggestions you can give us would be fantastic. We almost moved to Dubai 2 years ago so we have really been reading up on as much as possible. With a newborn I certainly don't want any surprises.

THANK YOU!!!!

Carrie:):confused:
Hi CArrie,

WOw, you are really organised. I have been living in Dubai for more than 11 yrs, I am GErman and mixed marriage, let me try to help out:

IF you do not buy property and you wish to have a nice villa I suggest you stay "in town", which is the old DUbai, close to SHopping Malls, doctors, schools. This includes areas like JUmeira, Umm SUquim and parts of Basha (new). THese areas are all close to the beach front. You can go to new developments, but apart from Marina and MEadows, nothing is really close.
SChools: you find everything here. In the last 3 yrs all schools have opened, not necessarily established...., The old ones are Jumeira PRimary School, BC, Horizon (smaller) BC, Dubai ENglish Speaking school (DESS) BC and also Emirates Int'l School which is IB. OF course you find Repton, Raffels etc, all new and very expensive schools.
Villas- many are vacant now, as people are moving to their property or simply moving away. Most VIllas do come with a kitchen/oven, but that's about it. All supermarkets advertise on black boards 2nd furniture and all newspapers too (Gulf news classified).
Winter: most lovely time, warm during the day (up to 35 degrees) and cool at night (Down to 13 degrees) only a few weeks though.
German lesson: I do give private group lessons for kids grade 1-4, to keep up with the German.
Good luck.
 

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Welcome DubaiJane

I agree - Jumeirah & Umm Sequim are definitely the nicest areas to live in. :)

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ahem, that is a biased opinion.....;)

My un-biased opinion is Green Community west is the best area to live in.:D
 

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ahem, that is a biased opinion.....;)

My un-biased opinion is Green Community west is the best area to live in.:D

Well you are wrong! ;) You are far from the beach and most interesting places in a new development. Umm Sequim is eatablished, leafy, near the beach, not far from anywhere you want to be, quiet, full of individual houses. And most of all, I live there so that makes the area super-desirable! :love:

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