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Britannia Turnbull’s International Guide: United Arab Emirates

Living in the UAE

The United Arab Emirates has grown to become one of the most desirable locations for expats and international movers of recent times. And it’s easy to see why. An exotic location with modern attractions, no taxation and a landscape incomparable around the world, the UAE is one of the world’s big draws. Made up of seven states (or emirates), the UAE is now regarded as offering some of the best quality of life around the world. British expats now rank in the top three nationalities now living the UAE.

Facts about the UAE

  • Despite the name, The United Arab Emirates has a minority Arab population with South Asians forming the largest group.
  • Arabic is the official language of the United Arab Emirates but English is widely used.
  • As is well known, Dubai is home to the world’s tallest building – the Burj Khalifa. People living over the 80th floor have to wait two extra minutes before breaking their fast during Ramadan as they will be able to see the sun longer.
  • Dubai has no sewer system, instead relying on trucks to move the city’s waste away.
  • The fleet of the Dubai police force includes a Lamborghini, a Ferrari and a Bentley for high speed pursuits.
  • There are no rivers in the UAE – the main source of drinking water in Abu Dhabi is desalinated sea water.
  • Dubai’s International Airport is one of the busiest in the world. It ranks as the 7th busiest in the world by passenger traffic and the 2nd busiest in the world for international passenger traffic. Terminal three is the biggest airport terminal in the world.
  • The Dubai Metro is the world’s first driverless metro network.

Largest Cities in the UAE (2012 Estimates)

Dubai – 2,106,533

Abu Dhabi – 1,935,234

Sharjah – 1,332,455

Al Ain – 580,000

Ajman – 403,923

Al Gharbia – 290,450

Ras Al Khaimah – 230,903

Fujairah – 145,940

Dibba – 78,200

Um Al Quwain – 72,936

UAE Immigration Information

Immigration rules vary from each emirate so it is advisable to contact the relevant body where necessary or go through the UAE embassy in London.

The most common route for immigration in the UAE is to be sponsored by an employer which should be simple with the boom across all career sectors. This is mainly due to the rapid development taking place in certain emirates such as Dubai and Abu Dhabi. If you have family then your employer can also help by sponsoring them but there are certain protocols and documentation to adhere to before your family’s move can go through.

Preparing for the UAE

It is important to remember that, while there is a heavy Western influence in the UAE, it is an Islamic state where operates with numerous Muslim traditions. It is important to research this before you make your move so that you can respect this.

There is also a different way of life culturally, socially and in work that take some time to get used to but the UAE can become a very pleasant way of life. You will find that there is very little that hasn’t already been thought of to develop a high quality of life, including most vehicles, transport and buildings fitted with air conditioning to deal with the heat all year round.

Moving to the UAE

Britannia Turnbull’s was an operating removals company long before the United Arab Emirates was formed in 1971. That expertise is taken into every overseas removal including the UAE where we have helped individuals and families make the move. We can help arrange to move and ship your belongings for your international removal and ensure that they are safely delivered at your destination – which can be problematic as there is no standardised address system in the UAE!

Need advice? Call our friendly team today on 0113 262 4111

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