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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all, and best wishes for Ramadan to those fasting.

Having been in London (UK) all of my 27 years of existence, I took the plunge recently and have moved to the Emirates.

Naturally, I tried to do a bit of research beforehand, and came across this site. Just hoping to pick some of your brains a little. Apologies for the forthcoming essay!

I am working in the Deira area (very close to the Marriott and probably 1km or so from City Centre).

I am currently staying in a studio/hotel type thing in Sharjah (next to our Sharjah office, which I will rarely use), until I find a flat.

I must say the driving standards are enlightening to say the least :D, although I did buy a GPS from Carrefour which has been a godsend (albeit at double the price it would cost in the UK).

I was hoping someone can help with the following questions

Living

Working where I am, I was wondering where is the best place to live. I need to get a 2 bedroom flat in preferably a new build with covered parking. Looking to spend no more than 70k (less if possible) and apparently I should look for aircon included. Being of Arab origin, I am fluent in Arabic as well as English, so would like an area which has a nice mix of western expats, as well as arabs, not to mention Malls, Shisha places, and restaurants within close proximity. I will furnish it myself if necessary.

I have considered Sharjah due to the better value, but the traffic is atrocious, and although the office I use is pretty close to Sharjah, the commute is taking around 1hr, with apparently worse to come when school hits.

Now for the questions


1) - Which areas from your experience would you recommend based on the budget and requirements above? I am all ears.

2) What is the traffic like heading towards Deira from the Jumeirah side of Dubai (for example) Will I save a load of time on the commute, or should I only consider the Deira area?

3) Banking - I just need to do the blood test then I'm sorted for the residency. Once that's hopefully completed, what bank shall I use?? Is it worth opening with HSBC or Barclays, or shall I simply go for a local bank.

4) TV - For watching an Arsenal game or something, then presumably I'd need Showtime, is that subscription via satellite, or is it cable?? Will most flats have a facility for me to install this?

5) Iphone- I've got a Wasel Sim in there at the moment (jailbroken/unlocked), but if anyone is using their Iphone, what is a good package to go for that will have some data?


That's pretty much all I can think of for now, obviously in terms of priority, it's the living that I need to sort out, then I can perhaps worry about the more social things.

Any responses are much appreciated, and if I can help with anything, please let me know.
 

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Hi, Welcome to Dubai!

I'm fairly new here as well, been here for just over a month so I can't really help you out with any of the questions, except that you might be better off posting separate questions from my experience of writing lengthy inquiries. I'm guessing it's also a little quiet here because it's still the summer holidays...

Out of curiosity, which GPS system did you get and has it been working well? Do you need to pay for the updates and do you know how often they update the maos?

As for accomodations, just from what I've heard and living in short term accoms here in Deira, traffic is pretty bad in the entire Deira area. Have you tried looking in this area? Or even Satwa? It would be pretty close to City Centre and there are a ton of restaurants there. Good luck and Ramadam Kareem!

PS Is it Ramadam Karim or Kareem?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi, Welcome to Dubai!

I'm fairly new here as well, been here for just over a month so I can't really help you out with any of the questions, except that you might be better off posting separate questions from my experience of writing lengthy inquiries. I'm guessing it's also a little quiet here because it's still the summer holidays...
Hiya Mate, thanks for the response.

I thought the essay might be detrimental to my cause, but essentially the living problem is the main one for me, I can probably figure out the rest at some point, but finding a flat is the thing stressing me out at the moment.

Out of curiosity, which GPS system did you get and has it been working well? Do you need to pay for the updates and do you know how often they update the maos?
I went for a Garmin Nuvi 1300. It cost 1330 AED from Carrefour (and same price in other shops). There was a lower model for cheaper with the same maps, but I liked the size of it and the clarity (widescreen).

If I had to rate it on a scale of one to ten, I'd give it a 7.

Many of the road names are just "numbers" like "road 12b" and sometimes it can get confusing with the configuration of many of the roads, especially as in some industrial areas, you tend to get "off the map". You will still maintain your orientation however, and get to where you are going. I.e. if you miss a turn, you are far more likely to get back to your destination rather than wander aimlessly without it.

Address entry isn't amazing (although you can pick points on a map) but the best thing for me is this

1 - Points of Interest , basically you can choose "nearest shopping centre" and it'll list the main ones to navigate to, and you can do the same for restaurants/shops/hotels etc.

2 - Once you reach a place you need, you simply add the location as a favourite, and you'll accumulate these which are very handy wherever you are.

It probably makes learning the roads a little slower, but it does mean you'll spend far less time being lost. I believe the map is a 2010 map, and probably wont be updated for a couple of years, but you can always add maps via 'alternative' means if necessary.


As for accomodations, just from what I've heard and living in short term accoms here in Deira, traffic is pretty bad in the entire Deira area. Have you tried looking in this area? Or even Satwa? It would be pretty close to City Centre and there are a ton of restaurants there. Good luck and Ramadam Kareem!

PS Is it Ramadam Karim or Kareem?

I'm gonna have a look, from what I hear, Satwa is quite dilapidated, but I really don't know until I go there. I'm not sure how traffic is further down towards Jumeirah coming back to Deira, but from the looks of some ads, there may be something within my pricerange.

My main issue is whether being that far out still is more advantageous than living in Sharjah, and also perhaps some personal experience from some of the people who've been here a while.

Thanks a lot for your response, and as you are phonetically spelling an arabic word, it all makes sense :) (although RamadaN as opposed to Ramadam). Sounds more like a swear that way, as in "Rama-Damn I'm hungry :D"
 

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Hello all, and best wishes for Ramadan to those fasting.

Having been in London (UK) all of my 27 years of existence, I took the plunge recently and have moved to the Emirates.

Naturally, I tried to do a bit of research beforehand, and came across this site. Just hoping to pick some of your brains a little. Apologies for the forthcoming essay!

I am working in the Deira area (very close to the Marriott and probably 1km or so from City Centre).

I am currently staying in a studio/hotel type thing in Sharjah (next to our Sharjah office, which I will rarely use), until I find a flat.

I must say the driving standards are enlightening to say the least :D, although I did buy a GPS from Carrefour which has been a godsend (albeit at double the price it would cost in the UK).

I was hoping someone can help with the following questions

Living

Working where I am, I was wondering where is the best place to live. I need to get a 2 bedroom flat in preferably a new build with covered parking. Looking to spend no more than 70k (less if possible) and apparently I should look for aircon included. Being of Arab origin, I am fluent in Arabic as well as English, so would like an area which has a nice mix of western expats, as well as arabs, not to mention Malls, Shisha places, and restaurants within close proximity. I will furnish it myself if necessary. If you want a 2-bed flat for no more than AED 70k then you don;t have many options. That is still way less than the market average. You might be lucky enough to find somewhere in Deira, but it won't be anywhere fancy!

I have considered Sharjah due to the better value, but the traffic is atrocious, and although the office I use is pretty close to Sharjah, the commute is taking around 1hr, with apparently worse to come when school hits.

Now for the questions


1) - Which areas from your experience would you recommend based on the budget and requirements above? I am all ears. See comment above. Or try International City on that budget

2) What is the traffic like heading towards Deira from the Jumeirah side of Dubai (for example) Will I save a load of time on the commute, or should I only consider the Deira area? Jumeirah to Deira is largely against the traffic, but your budget will never get you anywhere in Jumeirah.

3) Banking - I just need to do the blood test then I'm sorted for the residency. Once that's hopefully completed, what bank shall I use?? Is it worth opening with HSBC or Barclays, or shall I simply go for a local bank. Find out who your employer uses as that can help, and make sure you can access a branch easily.

4) TV - For watching an Arsenal game or something, then presumably I'd need Showtime, is that subscription via satellite, or is it cable?? Will most flats have a facility for me to install this? You have to take out a personal subscription, but this is a straightforward card & box set up.

5) Iphone- I've got a Wasel Sim in there at the moment (jailbroken/unlocked), but if anyone is using their Iphone, what is a good package to go for that will have some data?


That's pretty much all I can think of for now, obviously in terms of priority, it's the living that I need to sort out, then I can perhaps worry about the more social things.

Any responses are much appreciated, and if I can help with anything, please let me know.
All of Deira is not the same. If you can find somewhere close to Al Rigga Road, you ahouldn't have too many traffic problems and the metro is opening soon.

-
 

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I live in Port Saeed, Deira. Opposite the City Centre mall, though I prefer Festival City which is a short enough drive. There is also Al Ghurair City which is ok for Spinneys and Reef Mall

Traffic is ok most of the time, problems generally get larger the deeper you get into Deira. Never any problem going to the airport, towards Sharjah and get busy at times and never much problems going over the creek to SZR and beyond.

Our block is quite mixed nationality wise, there is a local shisha below us but the highlight of the area is QD's in the golf club. Shut for summer but very busy when it is open.

I have Showtime, the dish itelf is on the roof as part of the building but I had to take a personal account out with them to get the box.

Sometimes I feel a bit isolated here and wonder if living the Marina end is any better but then most times it doesn't bother me. I see a lot of Dubia a lot of UK expats don't see and cabs are cheap enough to get to Madinat, Barasti etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
@ Elphaba, Thank you very much for your response, it's greatly appreciated.

I've seen a few properties advertised in the 70k range but naturally I probably won't get a view or anything like that.

What is Jumeirah lake towers, and would a place there be good or is it too far (I've seen ads within my budget).

I've also been recommended Al Barsha area by a mate of mine. Seems like a good location provided I am not into traffic?

The main thing for me is a newish build, good location, next to a decent mall and restaurants etc, as well as a good mix, (Arab expats as well as Euro).

I am checking Gulfnews and also Dubizzle, are they good enough?. I may go for a drive around these parts too and see if I spot anything.

@ Mr Rossi.

Again, thanks for your response which is greatly appreciated. Does the Deira area also have some newish buildings with facilities? What you describe sounds pretty good. I'm not particularly looking to live in a community cut off from Dubai society, but preferably somewhere where the facilities are good. By facilities I mean the living conditions, shopping, dining, beach.

If the commute is half an hour or less, then even better.
 

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M123, Port Saeed has plenty of newish buildings. The gym in my block is a bit tired and the pool is tiny but they are the breaks. It's not really a cut off community, plenty of shopping, dining, shisha etc it's just personally I feel a bit cut off at times. Though I could attribute that to other factors as not having a garden (like in the UK) or just being in Dubai itself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
M123, Port Saeed has plenty of newish buildings. The gym in my block is a bit tired and the pool is tiny but they are the breaks. It's not really a cut off community, plenty of shopping, dining, shisha etc it's just personally I feel a bit cut off at times. Though I could attribute that to other factors as not having a garden (like in the UK) or just being in Dubai itself.

Cheers for this Mr Rossi,

I'm going to drive round these places mentioned and see what I can find.

Can't wait to settle somewhere and get some decent telly to watch my beloved Gunners.

If anyone has any further recommendations about places, or perhaps an insight that'll take me beyond Gulfnews and Dubizzle, it's all appreciated.

Other than A/C and Parking included, is there anything vital that I should look out for?

Many thanks

M
 
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