What You Need to Know Before Moving to the UAE


Sarah Peddie

Planning to move and work abroad can be a tricky business. There are many things that you need to sort out before arriving at your dream destination. 

But, no need to worry as we have put together some helpful information you need to know before you make your move to another country and start your new career overseas.

Article 6 - What You Need to Know Before Moving to the UAE

1 - Visa & Medical Registration

If you want to work in the UAE then you will require a residency visa, which will then allow you to obtain a work permit. If you plan on taking your spouse or any dependants with you then you will require a family residence visa.

A residence visa allows you to stay in the UAE for up to three years.

Before you apply for a medical license you must know that all the Emirates require a separate license to practice medicine:

For Dubai, you need to obtain a license from the Dubai Health Authority (DHA).
For Abu Dhabi, you need to obtain a license from the Health Authority Abu Dhabi (HAAD).
For all other Emirates, you will need a seperate license obtained by the Ministry of Health (MOH).

The application process for a medical license can be difficult if you are not familiar with the process. It is recommended that you apply with a specialist agent. The procedure involves payments of fees, training courses, exams and ministry approvals. 

2 - Housing & Accommodation

Housing in the UAE is easy to find, but it is very expensive. High salaries are what attracts expats to the UAE but most of it is spent on housing. However, you get what you pay for and you will be living in luxury.

It is easy to rent a house or an apartment but you can expect to spend nearly half of you salary on rent every month. 

3 - Healthcare

In 2018, the healthcare system in the UAE was ranked one of the top 10 most efficient healthcare systems in the world. So it will come as no surprise to expats that the healthcare is of high quality.

For UAE nationals, public hospitals are low cost or even free. For expats, they must pay a fee and have a health card to access public hospitals and clinics. Many expats prefer to have private healthcare, where English is commonly spoken and most of the medical staff are foreign.

4 - Education

If you are relocating and planning on taking your children with you then it’s good to look at what the UAE offers in terms of public and private schools.

Expat children can attend both private and public schools but must pay fees for both as schools are only free for UAE nationals. State schools still separate male and female students and even have different school hours for both genders. However, last year, they allowed mixed classes in kindergarten and grade 1. 

Around 40% of children in the UAE attend private schools. Some of these private schools offer foreign language education which is geared towards expat communities.

5 - Tax

As the UAE is made up of 7 different Emirates, each state has its own specific government. This means that there is no federal tax that is imposed on residents or expats. Each Emirate has its own income tax scheme. 

6 - Climate

The UAE has a desert climate which means they have mild winters and extremely hot summers, with humidity coming from the Persian Gulf. It hardly ever rains, with the average annual precipitation under four inches.

Usually, during spring time, the UAE can be really affected by strong winds which bring in dust and create sand storms. 

Fancy a move to the UAE and work in your dream job? Well, register with Odyssey today and that move could be a lot closer than you think.