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Dubai with teacher husband and baby?

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by hannahgarside, Apr 30, 2017.

  1. hannahgarside

    hannahgarside New commenter


    I know there has been a lot of posts about dubai but I was hoping to get some insight about moving to dubai with children. I have a son, who is 1 in July, and my husband and I are considering the big move. We are both primary school teachers with 5 years experience. We love our current schools, but are hoping to move for better work / life balance and to save. Are we mad to leave good jobs, with serious promotion propects for dubai or Abu Dhabi?

    Does anyone have any websites of moving with a young child? What did you do for childcare? We have applied for a post in a well known international chain of schools, but since then have heard bad reports about then.

    If you work in dubai, do you often bring work home with you, or can you leave at 4, with nothing to do at home?

    How much should we be looking at asking for? Is accommodation generally of a good standard or should we expect to budget for an upgrade?

    We would not be adverse to applying for jobs in Malaysia if it is possible to have a good standard of living and save. But we are thinking, for a few years, it would be more lucrative to be in dubai.

    Any thoughts or advice would be gratefully received.
  2. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    Dubai and the ME are not what they used to be 10 - 15 years ago, its now towards the middle to lower end in comparison to other places. there are much better packages, (and countries out there in my opinion), have a look at Asia, you would be amazed at what you could earn, and have a really nice life.
  3. drvs

    drvs Star commenter

    As above from a slightly different angle - I would recommend neither the expat culture nor the local culture in Dubai as being desirable for bringing up a young child.
  4. 123flowers

    123flowers Occasional commenter

    A lot of people on this forum have something against Dubai and the minute it comes up people are saying stuff about the country, money etc. People can't just give helpful advice it. Don't take this to heart at first I was like oh have I made the wrong decision but thought no I aren't letting people ( some who have never even been or taught there can I just add ) ruin the start of my international career. If this was a post about living in Asia people would be up your bum round about now, put it that way.

    To reply to your thread I don't have a child so can't comment on that. PM me the chain school as I have a job with one. Know some people at other ones too so maybe able to help! I have heard from friends who live out there that it is better than the UK. Each person is different I suppose like me I don't mind bringing things home but I don't have a child! My accommodation is fully furnished and at a high standard. Obvs not there yet but seen lots of pictures/ heard lots and am happy with it :)

    From lots of friends I have out there they are loving it! Better quality of live etc. Savings- that's all down to you! I have some friends who have said a lot! others not so much but they like to go out and spend, spend, spend lol. Living out there is expensive but you can do it, just all comes down to your lifestyle.

    Sorry a I can't be of more help, PM if you want anything else. Please don't let people ruin your dream, if Dubai is where you want to go then do it :) xx
  5. drvs

    drvs Star commenter

    People who have already lived and worked there are giving advice based on their experience in response to a post requesting advice. You have chosen to not listen to earlier advice and are going to Dubai next year - your choice to ignore advice doesn't make the advice itself unhelpful, it's just unhelpful to you in preparing your mind for what is ahead for you.
    tmarie5 likes this.
  6. 123flowers

    123flowers Occasional commenter

    that's fine about people that have lived/worked there I aren't judging them it's the ones who haven't lived or worked there. We have to remember everyone's experience are different and when you have had a bad experience of something ( I do it myself!) you tend to put your feelings across rather then facts/figures.

    I am open to any advice tbh, the more the better! :)
    suem75 likes this.
  7. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    i can not agree with @drvs more. advice comes from a very large amount of experience, either first hand, or working with a huge amount of people who have worked there. the international circuit is a very small place, and you get to hear a lot of information. i hope you take your rose tinted glasses with you @123flowers, and i hope it isn't anything like the massive amount of information you have received about Dubai.
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2017
  8. 123flowers

    123flowers Occasional commenter

    Yes I don't have any international teaching I will put my hand up and say that! I do have a lot to learn on my Journey! but it's my journey that I am excited about. Like I said above sometimes when you have a bad experience you put feelings across rather then facts/figures, sensible head thinking. But this isn't my post and didn't want an debate so will just leave it there x
  9. drvs

    drvs Star commenter

    To directly address some of these points:

    The madness of it depends on your attitude to risk / reward. You are certainly considering a risky move. In terms of promotion prospects, promotion is very rapid on the international scene, HOWEVER, as we see in other forums on TES - those promotions don't translate well if you plan to return to your home working environment in the medium term. We frequently find posts from overseas deputies and heads who can't get a job back home at the level which they have achieved overseas. Be warned.

    Worrying question. Primary class teachers in international schools still have to work hard.

    You would likely find yourself in a 2 bed high rise apartment in a satellite city. It would be of reasonable standard but your response to it will depend on how you're living now ... e.g if you're currently living in your parents' spare room you'll love it, if you currently live in your own house with a garden you may not. You can either take the school provided apartment or 1x the accommodation allowance which varies from school to school but would fall well short of the value of a villa. You don't both get the accommodation allowance,


    This is incorrect. Dubai is a good place to launch a long term international career and an easy place to get that first job. It is not, in my opinion the best place either to make quick money or bring up a young child.
  10. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    regardless of what @123flowers thinks, with her zero international experience, this is not true when you compare Dubai to the wider international circuit. yes you will earn more than the UK, but that is more of an indication of how poorly British teachers are paid. But there are many more better paying places than Dubai, and if as you said you want to earn quick money, then i would open your horizons and look further afield.
  11. T0nyGT

    T0nyGT Lead commenter

    You've never lived in Dubai, and therefore you can't offer any advice on it. Your posts are based on a desire to convince yourself that Dubai is not at all like everyone who has lived there says it is, as you want to convince yourself that you've made the right decision.
  12. 123flowers

    123flowers Occasional commenter

    Yes I know I haven't so thanks for pointing that out lol. No I know I can't that's why I said sorry I can't be of more help and this is all stuff I have heard. I don't need you to tell me I have made the right choice. I know I have. I did my research on lots, school, lifestyle etc. Spoke to a lot of people ( people I know who loved it and hated it) got all the information I need and made the decision. I aren't having a debate with you as it's not my post. If you want that please PM me.
  13. hannahgarside

    hannahgarside New commenter

    Wow, thank you all for your speedy replies. It is really appreciated. We are heading over to Dubai in December to visit my best friend (not a teacher, no kids) so we will have a better idea of what to expect from Dubai as a country, hopefully.

    @drvs I appreciate that teachers work hard wherever they are, but I understand that there are subjects that I won't teach, such as Arabic and swimming, so would perhaps have more PPA time for marking, in addition to being able to share the planning workload with other teachers in my year group.

    The main draw in moving would be to spend time with our son, instead of seeing him at 5.30 for half an hour before putting him to bed and working at least 2 hours after that and one day at the weekend.

    We are very interested in other countries that will offer a good lifestyle. Where would you recommend? Would we apply through TES or are there reputable recruitment agencies?

    Thanks again for all your help.
  14. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    The world is a big place and there are many many many options out there for you, just do some research. If however you are interested in saving money, i would avoid any country in the Euro.

    Join Search Associates, they will give you a breakdown of each schools package, class sizes, nationality of staff, plus salary expectations and saving potential. Honestly, no other agency comes anywhere near them.

    Or you could just go to the IB's website and look at all their schools. Its by far the largest pool of jobs out there, and completely out weighs any other curriculum system. The website also gives you direct links to schools websites, and you can apply directly though them. There is no real need for agencies. Just remember, if you can easily point out a country on a map, or you would actual want to go there on holiday, then 100's of others feel the same and apply to jobs there. These jobs are open to the world, and 1000's of people move around the world each year. In my experience, Brits are a small part of the international community. Candians, and Australians are everywhere. So dont get down hearted if you dont get something straight away.

    Good luck
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2017
    ejclibrarian and hannahgarside like this.
  15. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Dubai is a great place, if you like shopping malls, motorways, desert, air conditioning and racism. Young children often like to play outside with their friends, but they cannot do that if the temperature is 40+.
    ibecky123 and Charlyrose like this.
  16. Charlyrose

    Charlyrose New commenter

    Straight to the point, love this hippo.
  17. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    It is nice to be appreciated, Charlyrose.

    Have you ever thought of buying property in Bulgaria?
    JL48 and T0nyGT like this.
  18. Powergnome3

    Powergnome3 Occasional commenter

    The UAE and GCC region is now just entering that 40 degree phase... from around now the temperature seriously inhibits any outside play - for young or old (like me) children until around October.
    Having said that, virtually no teachers are in the country for 2 of those 6 months, and the other 6 months of the year bring the most beautiful weather... so really, it is only 4 months of rubbish weather - I'd take that any day over the 4 weeks of lovely weather you get in the U.K. Each year!
    While I don't particularly like Dubai - far too big and flash for me and very confusing to drive through; I have many friends who love it there. Pay is always about the school, not so much the destination - wherever you are in the world. I would imagine all of us, no matter where we have ended up, know of the best and the worst paying schools in our area - the best will allow you to save, the worst will allow you to live (which is still one up on the U.K.!)... Dubai, for example - if you are lucky enough to get a job in 'the College' a class teacher will take home £4500 every month... if you are in a low grade 'English Curriculum' school with students mostly from the sub-continent, you will take home £2500...
    hannahgarside likes this.
  19. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Yes, Powergnome3, and there are those awful seconds when it's 40 plus and you have to get into your car. It's like an oven inside and when you turn on the engine, the AC blows hot air at you! Then, about a minute or two later, the AC starts to work properly and you begin to feel a little cooler.
  20. drvs

    drvs Star commenter

    But it's too late because your clothes are already stuck to you and your eyeballs have melted :)
    mary821, T0nyGT and Charlyrose like this.

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