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Dubai with teacher husband and baby?

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

  1. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    The Middle East! Don't you just love it? Another abiding memory of Qatar was the fake, "canned" birdsong in the park next to the silly tower.
  2. TexanTeacher2013

    TexanTeacher2013 New commenter

    Can you provide some places that are better than Dubai in terms of saving. Currently, I am applying for the purpose of learning about life other than in the US, but ultimately to save.
  3. T0nyGT

    T0nyGT Lead commenter

    Most of South East Asia. Lots of Africa. Some of Eastern Europe. Spain
  4. sully007

    sully007 New commenter

    Hi! I cant comment on Dubai as I have never worked there. I do work in Malaysia however and have two children of similar age and a non-working spouse. I shall try to give my take on it so you can decide if Malaysia might be a better option than Dubai?

    Childcare: Usually provided by schools and most schools provide free education for up-to 2. Worst case scenario, there are plenty of Montessori which IMO are excellent.

    Accommodation: School dependent but definitely larger (apartments & houses) than the UK. Every school I know of either provides paid for accommodation or an allowance which is enough to live in a fantastic expat area.

    Children: Malaysians love children and are very tolerant of them. There are plenty of jungle gyms and playgroups you can meet up with on weekends. You wont run out of things to do here with them!

    Savings: The first 6 months are heavily taxed as you're a non-resident. This is returned eventually. Thereafter you will enjoy a very good salary to live off. I am the sole earner and even with the high tax, managed to do everything we wanted at weekends. If your school allows, the EPF is fantastic.

    The bad: Terrible driving. Bureaucracy is slow and terrible overall. Regular thunderstorms can ruin a day out. Heat and more heat throughout the year. This isn't helped by the very high humidity levels. Expensive alcohol. Meat quality sucks. The usual diets we have mean we have to shop at expensive expat shops (think cheese, avocados, peppers etc.).

    To conclude: You will have to remember you are not in the UK and this will keep you going through the bad. I am loving it and do not plan on returning to the UK anytime soon. Good-luck with whatever you decide!
  5. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    Surely you put Spain on there as a joke :):)
  6. stopwatch

    stopwatch Established commenter

    And, if by SE Asia, that means Thailand and Vietnam, my understanding is that salaries are not brilliant there - although the CoL is good
  7. stopwatch

    stopwatch Established commenter

    I think the OP is talking about wanting to save substantial amounts of money rather than just having the freedom to do what she wants at the weekend.

    My take on what would constitute a good salary is one where you have a good standard of living in the country where you live, manage to travel every holiday and then also put away at least £2,000 per month.

    I have glanced over the Dubai comments and, as expected, a very Marmite type range of responses.

    I lived and worked there for 8 years. If you get into one of the better/best schools,you can achieve a very good standard of living. I worked as a HoD and my wife as a TA. We sent home around £3,000 - £4,000 per month and went on holidays every term. We ran a nice car and had a fairly reasonable social life. Lifestyle for families? I would give it a thumbs up. Lots of outdoor activities for at least 7 months of the 10 months you would be there/ from October through to April. The beaches and parks are lovely places to hang out. When it is too hot, there are plenty of indoor play 'palaces' to take your children along with playdates at friends villas/apartments. The country is very safe and calm and quiet and has a great infrastructure.

    I don't like Marmite, but I loved Dubai:);) it gets a thumbs up from me anyhow
  8. VS400

    VS400 New commenter

    We live in Saudi Arabia and you have much more opportunities to save here because the salary is better and there isn’t so much to do here so you don’t spend too much! I’m raising a young child here with my non-teacher husband. Home help is pretty easy to come by and there is none of the stress that Dubai such as sponsorship of nanny and yearly fees. I pay my helper 3500 sar a month full time (plus 1 month salary bonus and flight home) and she gets 1 morning off a week to go elsewhere to clean and earn a bit more (and any work she picks up at the weekend.) I find raising such a young child here is really easy and especially for toddlers. We live on a compound with the nursery onsite so my son can walk to school (yes even in June when it’s 45 degrees as it’s 2 minutes down the road.) Lots of children around
    and plenty play dates. Weekends spend by the pool or bbqing in the summer (we are outside until 12/1pm in July) and at the park, tennis or softplay in the winter. The weather here is much more bearable than Dubai I think because of lower humidity. There is more coming to the country and women will be driving this month so that might make life a bit easier. Saudi Arabia isn’t for everyone but we are a young couple who have paid off our mortgage and we are about to put a deposit down on a second buy to let in the UK. We have been here a few years and will be transferring soon to either Dubai or Asia but don’t regret coming here for a second. Also it’s easy to find parties and fun nights out so don’t worry too much about that!
    My cons here are it gets boring, pollution is a huge problem (we can get it worse than China) and the restrictions still in place for women. I think Dubai seems like a better lifestyle but you better be prepared to be frugal as all the activities and brunches start to add up! Good luck!
  9. stopwatch

    stopwatch Established commenter

    I agree with you somewhat VS400. I have also had 2 stints in KSA as well as my 8 years in Dubai (and 3 years in Egypt). The first (2001-04) and the second (2016-18). There are a number of positive changes within the Kingdom since my first stint and things are much more relaxed. Restaurants are more open and the airport staff are a lot more friendly/the process for arrival and entry are much quicker too. The lifestyle is pretty much as you describe and.if you have children, living on a compound is very safe and convenient.

    My salary here was about the same as in Dubai, but with no responsibility (in Dubai I was a HoD). I have managed to save average of £3500 per month since getting here, plus holidays every term. Living here is less convenient and open than in Dubai and you do definitely have to develop a certain mindset. I can't say I have enjoyed it as much as my first stint here, or my stint in Dubai but that is more a reflection of me than the country itself.

    Please send me a PM if you have any specific questions that can't be answered here:):D
    Mr_Frosty and VS400 like this.
  10. VS400

    VS400 New commenter

    I can’t believe the change in the last 4 years I’ve been here. Music on the radio, open abayas and shops not always closing for full prayer time! Everyone says you come to KSA in tears and leave in tears.;)
  11. buxasim

    buxasim New commenter

    how do i PM you ?
    P.S Sorry this is the first time I'm using this site
  12. stopwatch

    stopwatch Established commenter

    As I haven't received a message from you, I assume you didn't manage to work it out.

    You click on the 'Stopwatch' name and a menu will come up. One option is 'start a conversation'. This takes you to the page where you can send a message. For some reason, they call it a 'conversation' on TES.

    I am not sure if this is the case, but I think you have to put a few comments down before you can send a PM. I am sure somebody else will clarify.
  13. Jason_Bourne_

    Jason_Bourne_ Occasional commenter

    I hope you don't mind me sending you a PM.
  14. stopwatch

    stopwatch Established commenter

    I have sent you a reply
    Jason_Bourne_ likes this.
  15. Andrewlouisbh

    Andrewlouisbh New commenter


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