Globaleye Relocation Guide
A Guide to Living and Working Overseas
Dubai is one of the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It is located south of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian
Peninsula and has the largest population with the second‐largest land territory by area of all the emirates, after Abu Dhabi.
Dubai and Abu Dhabi are the only two emirates to have veto power over critical matters of national importance in the
The earliest recorded mention of Dubai is in 1095, and the earliest settlement known as Dubai town dates from 1799.
Dubai was formally established in the early 19th century by the Al Abu Falasa clan of Bani Yas, and it remained under clan
control when the United Kingdom assumed the protection of Dubai in 1892. Its geographical location made it an important
trading hub and by the beginning of the 20th century, it was an important port. In 1966, the year oil was discovered, Dubai
and the emirate of Qatar set up a new monetary unit to replace the Gulf Rupee; the oil economy lead to a massive influx of
foreign workers, quickly expanding the city by 300% and bringing in international oil interests.
The modern emirate of Dubai was created after the UK left the area in 1971. At this time Dubai, together with Abu Dhabi
and four other emirates, formed the United Arab Emirates. The following year Ras al Khaimah joined the federation while
Qatar and Bahrain chose to remain independent nations. In 1973, the monetary union with Qatar was dissolved and the
UAE Dirham introduced throughout the UAE. A free trade zone was built around the Jebel Ali port in 1979, allowing foreign
company’s unrestricted import of labour and export capital. The Gulf War of 1990 had a negative financial effect on the
city, as depositors withdrew their money and traders withdrew their trade, but subsequently the city recovered in a
changing political climate and thrived.
Today, Dubai has emerged as a global city and a business hub. Although Dubai’s economy was built on the oil industry,
currently the emirate’s model of business, similar to that of Western countries, drives its economy, with the effect that its
main revenues are now from tourism, real estate, and financial services. Dubai has recently attracted world attention
through many innovative large construction projects and sporting events. This increased attention has highlighted labour
rights and human rights issues concerning its largely South Asian workforce. Dubai’s property market experienced a major
deterioration in 2008 and 2009 as a result of the worldwide economic downturn following the financial crisis of 2007–
Dubai has a hot arid climate. Summers in Dubai are extremely hot, windy and dry, with an average high around 40 °C (104
°F) and overnight lows around 30 °C (86 °F). Most days are sunny throughout the year. Winters are cool and short with an
average high of 23 °C (73 °F) and overnight lows of 14 °C (57 °F).
According to the census conducted by the Statistics Centre of Dubai, the population of the emirate was 1,771,000 as of
2009, which included 1,370,000 males and 401,000 females. The region covers 497.1 square miles (1,287.4 km²). The
population density is 408.18/km² – more than eight times that of the entire country. Dubai is the second most expensive
city in the region, and 20th most expensive city in the world. As of 2005, 17% of the population of the emirate was made
up of UAE nationals. Approximately 85% of the expatriate population (and 71% of the emirate’s total population) was
Asian, chiefly Indian (51%), Pakistani (16%), Bangladeshi (9%) and Filipino (3%). A quarter of the population however
reportedly traces their origins to Iran.
In addition, 16% of the population (or 288,000 persons) living in collective labour accommodation were not identified by
ethnicity or nationality, but were thought to be primarily Asian. The median age in the emirate was about 27 years. The
crude birth rate, as of 2005, was 13.6%, while the crude death rate was about 1%. Although Arabic is the official language,
English is the lingua franca of the city and is very widely spoken by residents. Urdu, Persian, Hindi, Bengali, Tamil, Tagalog,
Chinese, Malayalam, and other languages are spoken in Dubai by its many foreign residents.
Article 7 of the UAE’s Provisional Constitution declares Islam the official state religion of the UAE. The government
subsidises almost 95% of mosques and employs all Imams; approximately 5% of mosques are entirely private, and several
large mosques have large private endowments.
Dubai also has large Christian, Hindu, Bahá’í, Sikh, Buddhist, and other religious communities residing in the city. Non‐
Muslim groups can own their own houses of worship, where they can practice their religion freely, by requesting a land
grant and permission to build a compound. Groups that do not have their own buildings must use the facilities of other
religious organisations or worship in private homes. Non‐Muslim religious groups are permitted to openly advertise group
functions; however, proselytising or distributing religious literature is strictly prohibited under penalty of criminal
prosecution, imprisonment, and deportation for engaging in behaviour offensive to Islam.
The UAE culture mainly revolves around the religion of Islam and traditional Arab, and Bedouin culture. In contrast, the city
of Dubai is a highly cosmopolitan society with a diverse and vibrant culture. The influence of Islamic and Arab culture on its
architecture, music, attire, cuisine and lifestyle are very prominent as well. Five times every day, Muslims are called to
prayer from the minarets of mosques which are scattered around the country. Since 2006, the weekend has been Friday‐
Saturday, as a compromise between Friday’s holiness to Muslims and the Western weekend of Saturday‐Sunday.
In 2005, 84% of the population of metropolitan Dubai was foreign‐born, about half of them from India [65%]. The city’s
cultural imprint as a small, ethnically homogenous pearling community was changed with the arrival of other ethnic groups
and nationals—first by the Iranians in the early 1900s, and later by Indians and Pakistanis in the 1960s.
Major holidays in Dubai include Eid al Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan, and National Day (2 December), which marks
the formation of the United Arab Emirates.
Dubai features three main shopping centres each unique in its own right. Dubai Mall is the largest shopping centre in the
World with over 165 stores and an underwater zoo, Mall of the Emirates is famous for its indoor ski slope while Ibn Batuta
Mall is the world’s largest themed shopping mall. With other retail spaces including the Marina Walk, Marina Mall and
many more you really are spoilt for choice when it comes to shopping in Dubai.
Fine dining is definitely something that has grown in Dubai and there is a very wide selection to choose from. Grosvenor
House have restaurants under the guidance of internationally renowned chefs; Mezzanine, a spacious restaurant offers a
modern British menu created by celebrity chef Gary Rhodes, while Indego boasts Vineet Bhatia, the first Indian chef to win
a Michelin star, as its consultant.
Dubai has an advanced public transport system featuring buses, taxis, abras, water buses and the recent Dubai Metro.
Dubai’s Roads & Transport Authority (www.rta.ae) is responsible for developing solutions for road, land and marine
networks to keep pace with Dubai’s emirate’s economic development.
Dubai Metro (http://www.rta.ae/dubai_metro/english) is the latest project launched by Dubai.
The Water Taxi service, the first of its kind in the region, covers public marine transport stations and berths of some hotels,
tourist resorts and marine clubs in Dubai including the Dubai Creek area, Al Mamzar Corniche, Jumeirah Open Beach and
Dubai Marina through to Jebel Ali, linking coastal hotels with historical areas like Al Fahidi, Al Shindagha and the Old Souk.
The service has 19 stations in the first stage which are served by 5 water‐taxis. Each water‐taxi can accommodate 11
passengers with seats designed for those with special needs. The taxi is also provided with the best navigational systems
and security and safety requirements as recognized by the International Maritime Organization. This includes a wireless
phone system, AC, global positioning system (GPS) and automatic identification system. In addition, the taxi features
luxurious means of entertainment that passengers can use during their voyage including LCD monitors fitted behind
comfortable seats that provide maximum relief and relaxation.
The new service is extremely flexible as it is not tied to a specific voyage timetable. Those requiring the service can call
RTA’s free 800 9090 to request for a water‐taxi between 10am and 10pm. Tariffs start from AED 50.
See details of the Salik toll gates and fill in an application to get a Salik tag or top it up online. The Salik website
(www.salik.ae) provides complete information to subscribers and allows them to benefit from many electronic services.
Carlease Rent a Car LLC: www.carlease.ae
+971 4 424 5944
35th street, Dubai
Fancy Rent a Car LLC: www.fancyrentacar.com
+971 4 358 0005
Block M3 Gov’t Building, behind ADCB, 2B Street, Al hudaiba
Dollar Rent a Car: www.dollardubai.com
+971 4 336 5065
Office no. 203, 2 Floor, Arenco Building, Zabeel Road, Al Karama
Dubai Luxury Rent a Car: www.dubai‐car‐rentals.com
+971 4 272 4419
Arabian Dreams, P.O.Box.127759, Dubai
Budget Rent a Car: http://www.budget‐uae.com/
+971 4 282 2727
Zeenah Building, Opp. Deira City Centre, P.O.Box 8323, Dubai
For international travel, you can book a flight online with Emirates, Etihad, Qatar and many others. Dubai International
Airport’s website provides flight information http://www.dubaiairport.com/en/Pages/home.aspx, enabling you to track all
flights from and to Dubai round the clock.
Airport Meet and Greet
Marhaba Services, the premium and only Meet & Greet service in the region, was launched in 1993. The unit started with
Meet & Greet services for Arrival and Departure. As years passed the service has diversified into a wide range of products
available at all Terminals (1,2,3) of Dubai International Airport.
Diamond Service (Premium Service)
Full escort by a Marhaba Services Agent with a complimentary Porterage service to the exclusive Marhaba Departure
Checkin Lounge, Departures Area (where light refreshments and a selection of reading materials are available),
Provision of special hand baggage trolleys
Assistance through all departure formalities (Check in, Security, fast track clearance through Immigration formalities)
Buggy car transfer to the Departures Concourse building
Provision of the Marhaba Lounge, which features Business Centre and a 24hr food court.
Full escort by a Marhaba Services Agent from the arrivals level at the concourse to the exit of the terminal,
Provision of special hand baggage trolleys
Assistance through all arrival formalities (Immigration, Baggage collection, Customs).
Buggy Car ride,
Handover visas or other essential documents to passengers, at the arrival terminal,
Speedy clearance through passport control,
Complimentary Porterage service,
Handover of passengers to the receiving party outside arrivals.
Chauffer Service (Additional Service):
Audi Car – Can accommodate 2 large suitcases, Take candidate direct to hotel
Candidates arriving on Emirates (Business Class):
Marhaba service to take candidates to Emirates Chauffer Service counter.
Marhaba Services: www.marhabaservices.com +971 4 389 8989 firstname.lastname@example.org
Sheikh Zayed Road,
PO Box 9544
+971 4 332 4444
Arabian Courtyard Hotel
Al Fahidi Street
(Opposite Dubai Museum)
+971 4 351 9111
Dubai International Hotel
Opposite Terminal 3
+971 4 260 4000
From 200 AED per night (£34.52)
From 248 AED per night (£43.00)
From 395 AED per night (£68.49)
Regent International School: www.risdubai.com
+971 4 360 8830 ext 100/101. Fax +971 4 360 8831
email@example.com, for student admission and registration firstname.lastname@example.org
PO Box 24857, The Greens, Emirates Living Community, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Dubai British School: www.dubaibritishschool.ae
+971 4 361 9361. Fax +971 4 360 9294
PO Box 37828, Springs 3, Emirates Hills, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
The Winchester School: www.thewinchesterschool.com
+971 4 882 0444. Fax +971 4 882 0440
PO Box 38058, The Gardens, Jebel Ali, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Delhi Private School: http://www.dpsdubai.com
+971 4 882 1848. Fax +971 4 882 1849
PO Box 38321, The Gardens, Jebel Ali, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
GEMS Wellington International School: www.wellingtoninternationalschool.com
+971 4 348 4999. Fax +971 4 348 6595
PO Box 8607, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Emirates International School – Jumeirah: www.eischools.ae
+971 4 348 9804. Fax +971 4 348 2813
PO Box 6446, Al Thanya Road, United Arab Emirates.
Dubai American Academy: http://www.gemsaa‐dubai.com
+971 4 347 9222. Fax +971 4 347 6070
PO Box 32762, Al Barsha, United Arab Emirates
Welcare Ambulatory Care Centre: www.ehl.ae/welcareambulatory
+971 4 366 1030
Block 10, Knowledge Village, Al Sufouh, P.O.Box 500723, Dubai
Dubai London Clinic: www.dubailondonclinic.com
Jumeriah Beach Road, Umm Suqeim, P. O. Box 12119, Dubai.
American Hospital: www.ahdubai.com
+971 4 309 6699
Oud Metha Road, Oud Metha, P.O. Box 5566, Dubai
UAE Emergency Contact Numbers
Electricity and water:
Dubai Government Information Service:
Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing:
Dubai Electricity & Water Authority:
Roads and Transport Authority:
Residence Permit Process
Employment visa timings may require more or less days than expected depending on UAE Immigration and other
government offices involved during the process.
Required Documents for Employment Visa Application
Passport if you have worked in UAE before, residence permit cancellation copy is required
Photo – white clear background
Medical Insurance Copy
Original Attested Education Certificate if available, otherwise copies of Qualification or Training Certificates
Address & Contact number in home country
Mothers first and maiden name
Emirates ID card
Once your UAE Residency Visa is approved please fill in the e‐form at any authorized Typing Centre Documents required
when filling in the e‐form at the Typing Centres ‐ Original valid passport. Valid UAE residency permit. Registration fees: AED
100 per year. Service fees: AED 70. Then you wait for a SMS to confirm the date and place of registration. After receiving
the SMS, you will visit the service point stated in the SMS with your original supporting passport on the determined date
and time to complete photographing and fingerprinting process. A receipt will be issued as the card will be sent to you
after 3 months (approx. timing).
UAE Driving License
If you have a driving license from the approved list of countries your license is then exchanged into a UAE license if not you
must undergo training, signal and road test before you can obtain a license.
The documents you will be required to take with you when transferring foreign license to UAE license are as follows:
1. No objection letter from Sponsor.
2. Original valid license and colour copy of original valid license
3. Original passport and colour copy of original passport
4. 2 passport sized photographs
5. Eye test results (you can take an eye test at any optical stores but you are required to take the results with you)
6. Translation into Arabic of driver’s licence
The process will take approximately 1 hour. Fees are AED 360 however subject to change without notice.
Generally, overseas travellers are more likely to be injured through unintentional injuries than to be struck down by exotic
infectious diseases. In fact, accidents and traffic collisions are the most frequent cause of death among travellers, so ensure
you have good insurance and if you are hiring a vehicle, ensure it is in good working order.
Copy your documents
In the unfortunate event of your luggage going missing, or your passport / wallet is stolen or lost, it is a good idea to have
copies that can help you with re‐issues. Take 2 coloured photocopies of your passport, plus visa stamps and documents,
driving licence, important prescriptions or other ID documents. Make 2 sets of the documents and keep these copies
separate from your main luggage, preferably in 2 separate bags. It is also a good idea to copy scanned or photocopied
documents to an Internet based e‐mail account. Make sure someone at home knows how to access it in case of an
Check with your medical practitioner on what vaccines are required before your travel. Due to your medical history, you
may require more than one dose, or you may need boosters for childhood vaccines. Check the latest travel advice and
travel bulletins for your destination before you depart, and also while travelling, so you can ensure you have the latest
Common diseases contracted by travellers include those which are the result of eating or drinking contaminated food or
water, or not practising safe sex, plus a number of mosquito or tick‐borne diseases endemic to tropical areas. Be sure to
take measures to avoid being bitten such as wearing light‐coloured clothing that covers your arms and legs, regularly
applying an appropriate insect repellent and staying in mosquito‐proof accommodation or using bed nets.
Taking medicines with you
Book a check‐up at your doctor or dentist, before you leave. If you wear glasses or contacts lenses, bring an extra pair of
glasses and your prescription. Persons taking prescription medications should make sure they have an adequate supply for
the trip, and/or bring their prescription, making sure it includes the medication trade name, manufacturer’s name, generic
name, and dosage. Please also be aware that certain medicines are forbidden in Dubai, such as Codeine. Please check that
any medication you are taking is legal and if you are unsure please contact us and we will check for you. Prepare a simple
medical kit of over‐the counter medications (aspirin, ibuprofen, antihistamine, antiseptic and diarrhoea medication), band
aids, thermometer, sunscreen, and insect repellent. When travelling overseas with medicine, (including over‐the‐counter
or private prescription) it is important that you talk to your doctor and discuss the amount of medicine you will need to
take. Carry a letter from your doctor detailing what the medicine is, how much you will be taking, and stating that it is for
your own personal use. Leave the medicine in its original packaging so it is clearly labelled with your own name and dosage
instructions. If you have to inject your medication, inform your airline before you travel and, if necessary, arrange a letter
from your doctor explaining why you need to carry them.
Your health on long‐haul flights
Keep important medication with you in case your luggage goes missing. To help avoid deep vein thrombosis (DVT): drink
plenty of fluids, avoiding alcohol and caffeine, and whilst seated, stretch and rotate your feet and lower legs. Walking
around the cabin at regular intervals will help.
If you have been scuba diving, don’t travel in an aircraft for at least 24 hours after your final dive.
Coping with Jetlag
Factor the effects of jet lag into your itinerary. In order to cope with Jetlag you should get a good deal of sleep before your
journey. It is also important to rest as much as possible during your flight. Planning to arrive at your destination as near to
the time when you normally go to sleep will also help with the adjustment. If you are able to plan your itinerary allow time
on arrival for adjustment or plan meetings at similar times to back home. Some people advise changing their watches to
destination time when they get onto the plane. While this helps many people, for those who are on regular medication,
such as diabetics, watches should remain on home time until you are able to adjust your medication to local times on
arrival at your destination or as suggested by your health advisor. On arrival at your destination get active as soon as
possible, as exercise has been proven to improve productivity. Adjust your meals and activities to local time as soon as you
can. Exposure to light is also a good way of naturally allowing your body to adjust. If you need to take a short nap, do, it will
help refresh you, but don’t forget to use an alarm clock or wake up call to get you up!
If you happen to lose your baggage on arrival at your destination airport, tell the airline immediately and get suitable
compensation. Agree on an amount you can spend on essential items that you will need and give them an address to
deliver the luggage to when they find it. It is wise to make a copy of your passport details and any other important papers
or vaccination certificates that you are carrying with you when you travel. Leave them in a safe place in the office or copy
to an Internet based e‐mail account. Make sure someone at home either a partner or friend knows how to access it in case
of an emergency. You will need photo identification even for air travel within the UK.
Be aware of your surroundings at all times; thieves will use many tricks to distract you ‐ wiping something off your shoulder
while an accomplice is picking your pocket, getting young children to surround you while they plan to rob your belongings.
Trust your instincts, especially when visiting countries where a high poverty rate comes along with high petty crime rates.
When not attending meetings, try to blend in with the crowd when out and about ‐ try not to look like a visitor! When
enjoying the local nightlife, guard your food/drinks and keep your wits about you. Beware of the fact that you will be an
easy target after a few too many drinks. Avoid walking home to your hotel late at night, even if it is close by. Get a taxi.
Don’t take shortcuts through poorly lit areas; it pays to trust your instincts in these situations. Keep your wits about you
when making new friends – men and women may come across very friendly indeed if you are the route to an easier life. Be
careful of telling people where you live.
Unsafe Water ‐ What to do
If travelling to more remote areas with poor sanitation ‐ only drink boiled water, hot beverages, such as coffee and tea,
canned or bottled carbonated beverages, beer, and wine. Ice may be made from unsafe water and should be avoided. It is
safer to drink from a can or bottle of beverage than to drink from a container that was not known to be clean and dry.
However, water on the surface of a beverage can or bottle may also be contaminated. Therefore, the area of a can or
bottle that will touch the mouth should be wiped clean and dry.