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Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Old Dec 29th 2015, 9:24 pm
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Default Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Hello everyone

I hope someone there can help me. We are family of 4, 3 years old and 5 years old from the UK, I have been offered a job in Bahrain, salary 1,700 BD + health insurance. My first question is the salary enough to live comfortably there.
Witch area is the best to live in? I would like to live close to the British community, and my work will be in Manama.
What is the best international school?
Is it better to buy a car or rent?
We are excited about the move but also nervous. Pic everything went to plan we should move around July.

Any help will be much appreciated.

Best regards
Sally
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Old Dec 29th 2015, 11:16 pm
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

For a family of 4 ? Who will pay the school fees ? What about accommodation ? Will you get an allowance ? If you have only that salary coming in things will be tight. If you have to pay school fees, impossible.Does your partner plan to work ? That would make the sums add up a bit better.
Sorry to be the bearer of not-so-good news.

Last edited by scot47; Dec 29th 2015 at 11:20 pm.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 7:01 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

1,700 BD is approx. £3k - that's gotta be tight for a family of 4....although I have no idea about the cost of living in Bahrain. If that salary is all inclusive, then definitely impossible when you take into account accommodation, school fees etc.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 7:23 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Thank you Scot and Mission for your helpful reply.
Unfortunately the company is not paying any other allownce, however, I will be getting annual bonuses. Still not sure how much. my husband is planning to give private English lessons, so he is flexible around kids school run.

Thanks
Sally
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 9:02 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

I don't know about Bahrain, but school fees over here start from around AED 15k upwards per term, per child.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 9:45 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Best area or school? Forget that, you'd struggle to get somewhere half decent.

With a dependent spouse and three children that is a ridiculous all-in package for a Westerner. IF, and that's a big IF, your husband gets any students he would be working illegally unless he has a proper work visa and the demand for English lessons is not as high as you may think in the GCC.

It's just not viable.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 10:06 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Not even close for a western family of 4 on that cash. It 'could' be done but you'd be penny pinching to the extreme. I would guess it wouldn't be the most fun for the kids either as all the other expat kids would be getting everything while yours would be on sand butties and tap water.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 10:57 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Thanks guys for the advice, it is an eye opener for me. I'll negotiate a better salary, otherwise I'm way much better off at home.

Once again thank you so much for your time & your advice.

Sally
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 12:04 pm
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Originally Posted by Sally2411 View Post
Thanks guys for the advice, it is an eye opener for me. I'll negotiate a better salary, otherwise I'm way much better off at home.

Once again thank you so much for your time & your advice.

Sally
No worries. You did the right thing in asking the question first. The thing is, the ME even with tax free salaries is an expensive place to live, especially when there are kids in the equation.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 2:18 pm
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

You can do barain on the cheap but you wouldn't want to.
You'd be living with the lower paid Indians, your kids would have to go to a low end Indian school on Indian curriculum. You could put aside enough for a western club membership but you wouldn't be able to afford to eat or drink there.
Your family would be viewed worse than pikeys back in England.
The offerings from your prospective company are abysmally shite so I wouldn't even negotiate with them.

Villa in reasonable area 700 - 1200
St Chris used to be 3300 or 3500 a year for young ones, can't remember exactly
Food 400 a month
Beer from liquor store 100 month
Cheap small car 170 a month or 340 for 2 cars
Fuel maybe 40 a month, maybe a bit less
Plus phones, Internet, OSN TV, kids sports etc





Of course if you are of Indian decent and willing to slum it, you can do much cheaper on accommodation etc
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 3:06 pm
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Thanks for sharing your prejudice about Indian ways of living there Tockalosh...

Bahrain is not cheap at all. That salary is paltry without allowances. It is not something I'd advise for a family of four.

Be aware that tax-free is misleading. Whether you are eligible depends on many factors and, at the very least, you need to be out of the UK for a full tax year which means, if you came now, you would not actually be able to return to live in the UK until April 2017 or you'd be liable for tax on all you earned here in the meantime. And if things don't turn out right here and you want to return, paying tax on that BD1,700 a month will make it even more ridiculous.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 5:27 pm
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

I do have my very low opinions of Indians which is hardly news but my observations are based on living there twice. If you want to live on 1700 a month with kids and a non working husband then you're gonna be living in the Indian shithole with all their filth.
And not everyone wants to do that.
My doctor is a south African passport holder of Indian decent and he despises India and Indians but you would probably say that's ok because he is a brown fellow.
if the OP feels excited about an Indian cultural experience in Manama because of decent or adventure then hey ho why not however I suspect the OP was dreaming of villas with pools and schools with teachers who can pronounce window correctly instead of Vindow.
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Old Dec 31st 2015, 4:37 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Originally Posted by Tockalosh View Post
I do have my very low opinions of Indians which is hardly news but my observations are based on living there twice. If you want to live on 1700 a month with kids and a non working husband then you're gonna be living in the Indian shithole with all their filth.
And not everyone wants to do that.
My doctor is a south African passport holder of Indian decent and he despises India and Indians but you would probably say that's ok because he is a brown fellow.
if the OP feels excited about an Indian cultural experience in Manama because of decent or adventure then hey ho why not however I suspect the OP was dreaming of villas with pools and schools with teachers who can pronounce window correctly instead of Vindow.
jeeze talk about stereotyping......are you a racist by any chance? if you are, you are in the wrong f*king region
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Old Dec 31st 2015, 5:22 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Yes and I am towards Indians... They are generally a vile nation

I live in the most racist region on Earth. What part of planet dubai do you live in that isn't ?
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Old Dec 31st 2015, 6:43 am
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Default Re: Expat in Bahrain, advice on cost of living, etc.

Originally Posted by Tockalosh View Post
Yes and I am towards Indians... They are generally a vile nation

I live in the most racist region on Earth. What part of planet dubai do you live in that isn't ?
just cause the region is racist.....doesn't mean you have to perpetrate the same traits.....and it is very ironic that you admit to being a racist against indians, and yet you choose to live in a region where they are the majority - that has got to be the biggest oxymoron thing to do
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