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Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Old Mar 10th 2015, 8:17 am
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Default Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Hi forum,

I'm wondering if some of you are willing to share some of your collective wisdom with me. I am working in Abu Dhabi, right off the corniche, but I'm debating whether to live in Abu Dhabi or Dubai and do the dreaded commute.

I'd originally planned on moving to Abu Dhabi but to be frank, this town is deader than a one kangaroo outfit in the Australian outback. There seems to be, well, nothing here other than an assemble of building (mostly poor quality) and very limited amenities and shops. Perhaps I'm not giving it enough time, but the more I drive around Abu Dhabi, the less I discover. Even Reem Island is a construction zone reminiscent of Business Bay circa 2009 with only a handful of occupied towers and almost nothing on the ground. How does the expat lifestyle in Abu Dhabi compare to Dubai, especially for a single man?

I had lived in Dubai in the past and by contrast Dubai seems so much livelier. The choice of housing is much better, the range of shops and restaurants and bars incredible compared to Abu Dhabi. Above all it has that buzz of a city that Abu Dhabi doesn't.

But it is a 1.5 hour commute on a wild and crazy road.

Which would you do? Stay in Abu Dhabi or move to the south end of Dubai and do the commute? I do have in my advantage that I can work from home on Thursdays and I'll be flying to Qatar for two days every other week or so. I do have officemates who are willing to share the commute, taking turns driving.

On a related note, if I elect to commute, what would be the best cars? 4x4s are sadly out due to the poor mileage, so something fuel economical yet reliable and able to put in a steady 130km?

Cheers
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 8:19 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Originally Posted by DXBtoDOH View Post
On a related note, if I elect to commute, what would be the best cars? 4x4s are sadly out due to the poor mileage, so something fuel economical yet reliable and able to put in a steady 130km?

Cheers
Is that really a significant concern here where fuel is so cheap?

Stay in Abu Dhabi, give it a bit more time, it has a decent enough nightlife if you look for it.
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 8:38 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

I spent 4 1/2 years working in AD, just off-island (opposite the BMW showroom), until 2 years ago. The first 3 years I lived in AD, after which I fancied a change and moved to Dubai Marina.

First thing: Travel. For most of my time in AD I lived near the Corniche, and so travelled out of town to get to work. The traffic wasn't bad in that direction, but in the opposite direction looked horrendous. If you add on to that the fact that when I lived in the Marina that was the closest residential area to AD (Disco Gardens aside), and still the commute took a good hour. I'd say that, on average, 4 days out of 5 were ok (although you need to keep your wits about you to avoid the wuckfits), and on the remaining day some sort of chaos would erupt. So Marina to Corniche during rush hour is 1 1/2 hours on a good day, and even that might be optimistic.

If you're doing it every day, fuel costs probably do become relevant. I'd want something within a lot of tin around me, and fast and comfortable.

AD itself: I enjoyed those 3 years in AD, but for sure Dubai has more to offer. The restaurants, nightlife and other activities are available in AD, but Dubai just ratchets it up a couple of notches.

On balance I think the drive would make living in Dubai an impossibility, assuming you have to be in the office 5 days a week. I reckon you'd spend an average of 4 hours in your car each day, probably enraged / scared shitless / bewildered most of the time.
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 10:22 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

If you're doing 300km a day it does add up. Besides, my guess is you'd probably have to refuel more often, no? And I'd want to avoid the petrol station queues as much as possible.

Originally Posted by Brains1983 View Post
Is that really a significant concern here where fuel is so cheap?

Stay in Abu Dhabi, give it a bit more time, it has a decent enough nightlife if you look for it.
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 10:27 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

I daresay my biggest concern at the mo is finding decent housing. There's scores of options in Dubai, in the Marina and JLT. Less so in AD, where everything seems to be either cheap and nasty such as the older buildings, or dodgy such as converted villas in Khalifa City, or very expensive (Raha Beach and Reem Island). There's also preciously few flatshares listed, and I'd rather do a flatshare for six months to maybe a year, to make sure I like my job and it's going to work out, before committing to an expensive lease.

Being picky, I suppose. I should just be thankful I didn't end up in Qatar as was the original plan.

By the way, does anyone know anything about Downtown Jebel Ali? There's a few listings for a hotel apartment complex that looks decent enough and is near the JA metro station. I calculate it'd be just about one hour from AD rather than the 1.5 hours door to door to the Marina/JLT area.
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 10:48 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

anyone who seriously considers driving 300km a day and going a full day at work needs their head looking at.

There's lots to do in AD.
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 11:32 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Originally Posted by DXBtoDOH View Post
I daresay my biggest concern at the mo is finding decent housing. There's scores of options in Dubai, in the Marina and JLT. Less so in AD, where everything seems to be either cheap and nasty such as the older buildings, or dodgy such as converted villas in Khalifa City, or very expensive (Raha Beach and Reem Island). There's also preciously few flatshares listed, and I'd rather do a flatshare for six months to maybe a year, to make sure I like my job and it's going to work out, before committing to an expensive lease.

Being picky, I suppose. I should just be thankful I didn't end up in Qatar as was the original plan.

By the way, does anyone know anything about Downtown Jebel Ali? There's a few listings for a hotel apartment complex that looks decent enough and is near the JA metro station. I calculate it'd be just about one hour from AD rather than the 1.5 hours door to door to the Marina/JLT area.
Nothing wrong with Qatar mate , it's the Geneva of The Middle East !
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 12:17 pm
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Originally Posted by co durham boy View Post
Nothing wrong with Qatar mate , it's the Geneva of The Middle East !
Boring as fvck, expensive and small minded. Yes, Doha and Geneva have lots in common...
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 12:22 pm
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Originally Posted by OleJanx View Post
Boring as fvck, expensive and small minded. Yes, Doha and Geneva have lots in common...
Correctos
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Old Mar 10th 2015, 5:38 pm
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Originally Posted by co durham boy View Post
Nothing wrong with Qatar mate , it's the Geneva of The Middle East !
You know you love it
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Old Mar 11th 2015, 5:22 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Originally Posted by soukie View Post
You know you love it
Saying that i've just agreed to stay and do another project , not sure if that's a good or bad thing
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Old Mar 11th 2015, 8:56 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Originally Posted by Millhouse View Post
anyone who seriously considers driving 300km a day and going a full day at work needs their head looking at.

There's lots to do in AD.
What he said.

It will eventually grind you down. I've had plenty of mates and people I know do it for a while before it nearly breaks them.

Some people don't mind, some did a big commute in Blighty etc, but it's not the length, it's the chaos of it that seems to wear thin.
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Old Mar 11th 2015, 10:58 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi has changed dramatically since we moved here 7 years ago. There are plenty of things to do and it all depends what you put in. Since we arrived:

Hakkesan, Asia de Cuba, Eastern Mangroves, Zuma, Bentleys, St regis Sadiyaat, Koi, Caramel etc Souk al Barayat, Ritz Carlton

I seriously don't have enough days in the week to work, play tennis, kayak, go on a boat, eat out, entertain at home and look after the kids. There's cricket at the palace every weekend at the moment and boot camps, football, rugby etc
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Old Mar 11th 2015, 10:59 am
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

and it's easier to do the commute once a week and go to dubai for the weekend, if what you need isn't here.
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Old Mar 11th 2015, 12:19 pm
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Default Re: Dubai or Abu Dhabi

Loads to do in A.D , always has been . Its a decent city to be working out of . Never understood that commute lark to be honest , blokes driving 3 hrs per day just to live in Dubai .

Daft in the heed !
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