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Advice Please - Pre Move to Abu Dhabi

Advice Please - Pre Move to Abu Dhabi

Old Mar 2nd 2023, 1:16 pm
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Default Advice Please - Pre Move to Abu Dhabi

Hi,

Looking for some advice about a potential move to Abu Dhabi. My husband has been offered a senior position located in Al Raha for 100,000 AED p/m. We'll be moving from the UK with two kids (5&8).

Health insurance, some contribution to private school fees (figure not decided yet), relocation costs, bonus entitlement have been agreed. Accommodation would need to be self funded by us.

Please can you advise e on:
1) Expat areas to live suitable for a young family (initially I wont be working, but hoping to find part time later)
2) British private schools near work/home with high ratings such as outstanding or very good
3) Idea of budget I should expect to pay for rent, utilities, car, home help
4) Families in this situation what has your experience really been like

Really appreciate the advice. Thanks,
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Old Mar 2nd 2023, 8:31 pm
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Default Re: Advice Please - Pre Move to Abu Dhabi

You can look on propertyfinder.ae to get a general idea. Lots of apartments and townhouses on Al Raha beach, most with community pools and some with direct beach access. It’s been 18 months since I left but expect 130k per annum and up for a 3 bed apartment. Utilities and ‘community charge’ on top payable monthly. No idea about schools!
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Old Mar 3rd 2023, 10:07 am
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Default Re: Advice Please - Pre Move to Abu Dhabi

Originally Posted by MummOfTwo
Hi,

Looking for some advice about a potential move to Abu Dhabi. My husband has been offered a senior position located in Al Raha for 100,000 AED p/m. We'll be moving from the UK with two kids (5&8).

Health insurance, some contribution to private school fees (figure not decided yet), relocation costs, bonus entitlement have been agreed. Accommodation would need to be self funded by us.

Please can you advise e on:
1) Expat areas to live suitable for a young family (initially I wont be working, but hoping to find part time later)
2) British private schools near work/home with high ratings such as outstanding or very good
3) Idea of budget I should expect to pay for rent, utilities, car, home help
4) Families in this situation what has your experience really been like

Really appreciate the advice. Thanks,
100k is a very decent package and should give you plenty of options and a decent lifestyle assuming the company make a dent in school fees and even if they don’t you should be fine. What you spend (and where you might live) really depends on your current situation and your expectations regarding size and type of accommodation, make of car or cars, home help etc … some idea of what you have now might get you more realistic answers.
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Old Mar 3rd 2023, 10:30 am
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Default Re: Advice Please - Pre Move to Abu Dhabi

We have three kids (4,4 and 8) at a British school so hopefully can help you a bit.
Originally Posted by MummOfTwo
Please can you advise e on:
1) Expat areas to live suitable for a young family (initially I wont be working, but hoping to find part time later)
There's plenty around Al Raha, whether the older Raha Gardens (on left of motorway as you go towards the main city) or the rapidly growing Raha Beach / Zeina / Muneira blocks (on right of motorway). Plenty of families live there and seem to love it (we live on island so can't really comment, other than it seems really far away to me!).
Originally Posted by MummOfTwo
2) British private schools near work/home with high ratings such as outstanding or very good
Basically the most commonly-used British schools are Cranleigh, Brighton College and BSAK (on island, so not close to where you want to be) then BISAD off island. There's also al Jasmina nearby but they (I think) run baccalaureate rather than British system. Our children are at BSAK and there's quite a cohort coming in every day from the Raha area, but that's a 20-30 minute commute to keep in mind. Cranleigh I would say is too far away if you're living in Raha area.
Originally Posted by MummOfTwo
3) Idea of budget I should expect to pay for rent, utilities, car, home help
For houses in a compound, you can range from ~120k (annual rent in dirhams - rents usually paid in advance, in full, for the year) somewhere in the middle of nowhere, to 350k+ (e.g. Saadiyat Island). Rents where I live in middle of the city are in the 150-250k range mostly. I think Raha/ Khalifa City area is likely to be around the 150-200k mark
Utilities for villas will depend on size; to give you an idea, our 6-bed runs 300 dhs / month electricity in winter and over 3000 dhs/month in the hottest months. But we have old buildings with old AC. More modern and smaller houses are probably capping out around 1500-2000 dhs in summer. Water is not going to be more than a few hundred dirhams a month assuming you don't have a massive garden or pool. Apartments are a fraction of this cost as your neighbours chill your walls, floor and ceiling for you.
Cars: lease starts at 3k-ish per month, best to do this for a couple of months when you first get here. New cars depend on what you want to buy. Plenty of second hand cars but unless you buy it off someone you know or trust, can be an absolute pain to sort out.
Maids are going to be in the range of 2000-4000 dhs per month depending on whether they live in, live out and what you feel is fair for what you're asking them to do. On top of that figure 6-10k per year in visa fees, flight costs and or holiday-not-taken reimbursements.
Originally Posted by MummOfTwo
4) Families in this situation what has your experience really been like
We're running on a similar household income and I can safely say that you will be very comfortable.

Just be aware that part-time work is not that common here compared to UK.
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