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Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Old May 22nd 2015, 5:39 am
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Default Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Hi everyone,
I'm looking for some advice and guidance please and any thing else you can give me!
My husband has been offered a position in Dubai and as far as I can see from looking at different threads on here, that it is a fairly good package.
We have until Sunday to make our minds up and having only a week to make this decision, my mind is going at 100mph!
We have 2 children, 6&8 years old. We previously lived in Canada for 8 years and have been back in the UK for 4 years, so we are open minded when it comes to new opportunities etc and the challenges of living in a different country.
My main concerns right now are safety, schools and areas to live.
My husbands job will be in the Silicon Oasis area in the Headquarters office (I think!) My husbands company will pay 115000 for accommodation, but we would love a villa as we would like a garden area for the children to play in. I'm not sure the allowance would get us a villa? I had seen the Mirdif area as being reasonable, besides the plane noise, does anyone have any info or own experiences of there?
Also schools, are you guaranteed to get in to the first school of your choice? I see the schooling fees can be quite different between schools. Is this an indication of the quality of schooling?
Sorry for all these questions, I'm sure you must get asked these on a regular basis!
If we had the time, I would have preferred to come for a quick visit before making our decision, but because my husbands company need the position filling asap, we don't have time.
Thanks in advance,
Louise
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Old May 22nd 2015, 2:12 pm
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Default Re: Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Hello & welcome

You mentions safety but this is not something to worry about here. Dubai is pretty safe and the most dangerous thing is the driving. That said you soon learn to drive expecting everyone else to be a lunatic and second guessing their actions.

AED 115,000 is a low housing allowance and won't get you much even in a cheaper area like Mirdif. Not everywhere there is directly under the flight path but you will get some plane noise. You should either ask for a larger allowance (depending on the rest of the package) or expect to have to top it up.

School fees are expensive and you haven't said if they are covered by the employer. If not, I hope the salary is a good one! Ideally you want to live near the school as otherwise you can spend half your day as a taxi service. No guarantees of getting in a particular school so best to have a couple of options. Bear in mind the school will say there is a waiting list but many families wait to the end of the school year to leave so there is a good chance of getting a place somewhere you want.

Dubai is a pretty good place for families and whilst it can be expensive you don't have to live a flashy lifestyle. Someone on here is a sticky thread with living costs which although a little out of date will give you some clues.

Ask away on questions.
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Old May 22nd 2015, 4:10 pm
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Default Re: Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Hi,
Thank you for replying.
I have spent most of today looking through threads for various bits of information, the one with the living costs has been really helpful. Its very hard trying to absorb everything!

My husbands offer is;
115000 Housing allowance
34000 Per child for school
5000 per person flight allowance
Phone is included (I'm not sure if this would be a work phone for my husband)
Health Insurance is covered by employer
Car is also included in the offer.
They would pay for the visas for the first year.
His wage offer is 216000.

From reading other threads, Arabian Ranches and Silicon Oasis look nice areas to live, Mirdif just seemed the cheaper option but also looked nice, just from looking in the budget given.

I'm not sure how good/bad our offer is, at first I thought it was good but after looking through all the schooling/ expenses etc, now I'm not so sure!

Can I ask, when I look at properties for rent, they all have a maids room, is this an extra bedroom? I know maids are popular in Dubai but I'm confused as to what it meant!

Thanks again

Louise
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Old May 23rd 2015, 8:28 am
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Default Re: Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Not all have a maids room, it should be mentioned in the ad. Do not think that a maids room could be used as a guest room, most I have seen are tiny and you have to buy a very small bed :-(
34,000 for schooling per child is about half what the fees are. You will not get anything in the Ranches for 115k. Maybe a 2 bed apartment outside of the main expat areas but then you will need a car as most of those places do not have public transport.
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Old May 23rd 2015, 8:59 am
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Default Re: Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Adding your benefits to your base salary works out to just about 35K a month. People quote packages/salaries on a monthly basis out here.

35K/month is a crap package for a western family with two children to educate. It's a great package for a single, a decent package for a childless couple, ok package for a couple with kids who aren't in school. But with school age kids, nope, nada, zip, sorry.

You will struggle. I wouldn't touch it with a ten meter pole.

Here's a link to the fees at a bog standard British curriculum school in Dubai:

School Fees - Dubai British School

You'd have to dip into your basic salary to cover the differential. For your kids that would work out to another 33K if they were at DBS.

And fees go up from there, with better schools charging more.

You may just be able to find a compound villa in Mirdiff for 115K. But you need to pay a 5% deposit, a 5% fee to the agent who did diddly squat to help you find the property, then utilities/dewa, which includes a 5% housing tax divided by 12 months. You would want to budget around 1500 a month to cover the dewa/housing tax/internet/tv package, so that's 18,000 a year on top of your rent just to operate the villa.

Then you'd need two cars. A few thousand a month for payments/insurance for two basic used cars. Assume it works out to 35K for the year.

Food: probably a thousand week for a family on a basic diet, shopping only at Carrefour, lots of pasta and rice. That's 52K a year.

Add up the school fees at DBS, the villa, the utilities, food, transportation, flights home, etc cetera, you're spending about 350,000 just to live. That leaves you with 70,000 out of the year's package to cover holidays, clothing, emergencies, meals out, social activities and whatnot. What are you left with for savings?

In short, you will spend every penny and have nothing to show for it at the end of the year. It's your choice.




Originally Posted by Richos_9 View Post
Hi,
Thank you for replying.
I have spent most of today looking through threads for various bits of information, the one with the living costs has been really helpful. Its very hard trying to absorb everything!

My husbands offer is;
115000 Housing allowance
34000 Per child for school
5000 per person flight allowance
Phone is included (I'm not sure if this would be a work phone for my husband)
Health Insurance is covered by employer
Car is also included in the offer.
They would pay for the visas for the first year.
His wage offer is 216000.

From reading other threads, Arabian Ranches and Silicon Oasis look nice areas to live, Mirdif just seemed the cheaper option but also looked nice, just from looking in the budget given.

I'm not sure how good/bad our offer is, at first I thought it was good but after looking through all the schooling/ expenses etc, now I'm not so sure!

Can I ask, when I look at properties for rent, they all have a maids room, is this an extra bedroom? I know maids are popular in Dubai but I'm confused as to what it meant!

Thanks again

Louise
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Old May 23rd 2015, 9:17 am
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Default Re: Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

I agree that school fees allowance is too low.

To live comfortably you need a higher housing allowance and school fees to be paid, especially if there will be just one income.

By law the employer must pay for all visa and ID card costs for their employees and are not permitted to pass then on but do not have to pay for dependents.

You say that the company need the position filling ASAP so you have some bargaining power by the sound of it. make sure everything is in writing and ignore any suggestions that they will increase allowances down the line. That almost never happens.
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Old May 23rd 2015, 2:30 pm
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Default Re: Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Remember to factor a pension into his calculations, I'd guess 15% of salary. He might also want to factor in UK Income Tax until confirmed UK non-resident (6th April 2017 at the earliest).

As previously mentioned, AED 35k/ month is not a lot for a family with two school age kids, you'll struggle. North of AED 50k/ month would be doable.
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Old May 23rd 2015, 6:14 pm
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Default Re: Job offer in Dubai, far too many things to think of!

Hi everyone,
Thank you for all your replies, your advice is what I needed!
My husbands company won't make any changes to the package offer but they will change his wage offer to 256000 instead of 216000. I was hoping for a better offer as they were the ones that sought my husband out for this job after all, but I think this may be it.
We'll be looking in to expenses etc again tonight but feel after all your advice, it's not enough for us to make the move.
Thanks again for your info, it's much appreciated.
Louise
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