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Six reasons why it is difficult to live in Dubai

The city is touted as ‘the place to be’, but as several of its residents will confirm, Dubai’s growing list of new regulations make life quite complicated.

November 16, 2008 7:09 by



  1. Johni on November 16, 2008 10:08 am

    Yes, and now you can add the 7th reason. EMIRATES IDENTITY

  2. Jayan B on November 16, 2008 11:15 am

    A good part of the US success story was its ability to attract and retain the best talent. Coupled with a fair system that listens to all residents, not just its citizens, US created the best talent pool. Here in the UAE and the Middle East, capable Lions come on Monkey Visas and are paid peanuts to act like Monkeys.

  3. Lianne on November 16, 2008 12:15 pm

    you forget one of Dubai’s most common ‘attractions’- TRAFFIC!!!

  4. Lianne on November 16, 2008 12:17 pm

    you forget Dubai’s most common ‘attractions’ — the Dubai Jams (and I don’t mean music!).

  5. Suzz on November 17, 2008 10:08 am

    If there are some who don’t like Dubai,(because of its 6 or 7 reasons, they can leave. Why are they still here.

  6. Saleh on November 17, 2008 10:28 am

    Why is it that for a UAE national to have the same right in his own country that all other nationals enjoy in their own home country, is seen as a negative ?

    Expats enjoy a lot of rights. Emiratization does not take away from these rights, but does give us locals some basic rights in our own country, which all expats get in their countries of origin.

  7. SAY10 on November 18, 2008 9:54 am

    Suzz”If there are some who don’t like Dubai,(because of its 6 or 7 reasons, they can leave. Why are they still here.”…..Such a Typical Answer. The reason we are hear is Because we have been Lied to about this place. Trust me suzzzzz Some of us are trying to and the first opportunity That arises elsewhere… we are allll gone.

  8. ARAB MAN on November 18, 2008 11:30 am

    Well, we all know that development is not only natural resources… its simply the eternal richness of a country; its humans… People are the only and most lasting richness of a country.. foreigners are building the country, we work hard and we want make this place a better place , UAE NATIONALS JUST STAMPING an image a doll with 3 mobile phones.. And they keep stamping… this place will fall the collapse will be so heavy that they have to think about deep and urgently… in the occidental world when you get to a country they treat you as a citizen because you are contributing in the growth and the development of the country .. here they remain treating you as a slave. There is a good example above of “US success story” but here they scared for they chairs and comfort… they may have this now but they are simply preparing for the slavery of their future generations. There is many gaps in this plastic development, example taxi drivers, if you try to take a taxi from sharjah to Dubai the driver simply refuses because he is not allowed to work in Dubai… The first question that would come up first is someone’s mind!! isn’t same country AND THE MONEY ISNT GOING TO THE SAME TREASURY!! Not its not!! a bunch of thieves on the power! I am late my wife is in hospital!!! !!! and the taxi driver keeps talking in Hindi or Urdu SORRY ENLISSSS NO MALOUM!

  9. Arab man on November 18, 2008 11:45 am

    For that 7 reasons mate… Ok we leave and others will come to take over for a while.. and they leave … an others come take over for and other while and leave… and the others of others of the others come for a while and leave…. and what we will get in the end!!! look “longer than your nose” !!! mate its not about today and its not even about tomorrow! we talk about far future! people have to come and love the place and give all what they have… devoted for a country and a love for a place thats what made America America and thats w hat mad England England but if you want monkeys… or just dolls yes sure y’ll keep answering with your 7 reasons. Mr Saleh what “your own country” man!! its not built by you …. look around…. and open your eyes and think.

  10. Vik on November 18, 2008 9:09 pm

    Dubai is a city being built to cater for a multi million strong population. Given the ratio of locals which is so low compared to expatriates, it is my opinion to start offering citizenship or even start with a green card system. This way Dubai will retain people to actually fill these spaces and use the infrastructure. Without these people to stimulate the economy, Dubai which is not an oil producer could be the next Bahrain of the Gulf. People will say, Oh! remember Dubai, it used to be the financial and business hub! People, locals and expats are all people with eyes legs a heart etc. and all need security and trust. One minute the developers are giving a guarantee on visas with property purchases, next minute that decision has been pulled back???

  11. vik on November 18, 2008 9:19 pm

    Hi Arab man….some of your comments are valid. I like the sorry Enlissss no Maloom. It is my opinion that you may want to take the opportunity to learn Hindi or Urdu especially when 50% of the entire population in the UAE is Indian and Pakistani and let alone 1.4 billion people are Indian and Pakistani in the world. Hey did you know that in the old days, the currency here was addressed as Rupiya and many of our Local brothers and sisters speak Hindi & Urdu. Also FYI a nice tikka masala with Naan beats every thing…who agrees??

  12. Proud Lady on November 19, 2008 12:27 pm

    I respect all views but I have one comment, as Saleh said if you dont like it then simply LEAVE !
    you did not come here unless you are looking for a better opportunity and I know very well that you cant get even half of what you are getting here and thats why you are here.
    There are other expats who are aware of this and they feel how luckey they are because they are living in a country like the UAE and an emirate like Dubai. I’m sure that where you came from, they even more suphisticated systmes and stupid rules that the TAXI od SHJ not aloowed to work in DXB ! In your country ppl are arristed for no reason, government is corrupted, ppl suffer hunger, no human rights…ect
    You are the one who should his eyes and look around Arab Man

  13. Proud Lady on November 19, 2008 12:51 pm

    I’m sure oue Indian and Pakistani brothers are satisfied and happy with living here since they were in the country before any other nationality. They were here since the poverty days and we are thankfull of having them. I do understand Hindid and I speak it a bit . We are used to live together

  14. Toomi on November 26, 2008 9:25 am

    I understood this from most posts concerning the rising problems in Dubai: Most expatriates cannot stop COMPLAINING.. It’s either “we want a visa!” or “the traffic’s horrible!” or “we built Dubai, not you!”. Please people, can you stop with the children-attitude? UAE nationals FULLY appreciate the likes of expatriates who have CONTRIBUTED (notice I say CONTRIBUTED- not MADE BY THEMSELVES) to the success Dubai is in now. It’s the likes of you, who always want to start a fight over something, that brings WAR on everywhere else! We Arabs are very thankful, I as an example am very grateful for the expatriates who have educated me and made me the leader I am today. Dubai thanks you, by allowing you jobs, education and A HEALTHY LIVING.. and all you do is rant and rave?! How UNGRATEFUL of you.. seriously.. If you’re going through hell in traffic or have doubts about emiratization, well, that’s simply because you can’t put in mind that US ARABS are also suffering from traffic and whatnot!

    Plus I totally agree with Proud Lady. You can NEVER find a place like Dubai, with its great way of living. You should all stop grumbling and start appreciating the life you have now.

  15. Toomi on November 26, 2008 9:29 am

    Oh and by the way, please don’t regard the last picture (of the ladies) as jealousy: It’s not that the Arab women in the picture are annoyed because the woman is an expatriate. It’s because she’s dressed INAPPROPRIATELY in a Muslim country. What is more, that picture has NOTHING to do with the concept of Emiratization.

  16. abeer on November 27, 2008 9:38 am

    great facts…
    esp the rents, toll, tax and taxi part…
    However, u also forgot to mention the quadruplying traffic and the road congestion. 24 km from shj to dxb are crossed in atleast 1.5 hrs in the morning and like wise inthe evening when going back.

    Also, I wud want to disgree abt the emiratization fact. Nowaday, even emiratis are unemployed. I have seen that for myself…what rules here is the passport, the white skin and the short skirts.
    westerns are fleeing from their countries and raining over our parade here (expat asians).
    I personally know ppl from the west who are hardly high school graduates and have the position of a manager, earning a basic of more than 15k. A mechanic westerner is now the manager in an aircraft hiring company. Can you beat the odds here?
    When I asked a few of my friends in the west,I swear this is what they had to say “Most of the immigrants to the Middle East are either high school grads or simply drop outs. they have the advantage of the language and the rolling of the tongue which, for some reason is admired greatly in the ME region”
    Think about it…this HAS to stop, really!

  17. An expat on January 4, 2009 9:07 pm

    A lot of comments abt dubai. Countries across the world have similar problems (traffic,tolls,rent etc)but yes one thing which dubai might start to think is providing some sort of permanancy for the expats. Many of us have been born in dubai and have spent 30-35yrs in the country making it the only home we know but one fine day you lose ur job and u lose ur home as well’cause no job-no visa-no home! The feeling is more of saddness than anger….can someone do something abt it?

  18. David on January 6, 2009 7:56 am

    You no like. You leave. Simple. Groan and whine in your own country

  19. sam on January 20, 2009 8:52 am

    hi i agree on most of what is said and ia dd to this the service. there is no service provider in here that delivers on time or with the quality you pay for.
    you need to do an agressive follow up to get what you want.

    there is nothing against indian or pakistani workers, but they are slow learners and terrible drivers.
    taking the fact that they learn driving when they are of 29 to 30 years of age, driving is somehting you learn when you are a teanager.

    there are a lot of indians and pakistanis and other nationalities in Los Angeles and they do not act like indians act here, they blended in the american soceities.

    here they insist on living and actind like they did back home and this is what makes it difficult for them to blend in wiht others.

    so my fellow indians try to learn from all the other indians that inhabit other parts of the world.

    Peace out

  20. Shakspere on February 2, 2009 6:00 pm

    You forgot Driving Lience.
    Labourers take loans from companies and pay the whole salary for almost 1.5 to 2 years to get the license.thus these people work without pay for 1 to 2 years.
    Karma – you reap what to sow.
    now the authorities dont have people to leave here specially after june,09

  21. Jason on February 3, 2009 9:54 am

    To those that say we should leave, guess what, we will. I’m counting the days until my contract is up. Not only that, I’m telling everyone back home what a hole this place is so no one makes the same mistake I made. Why did I come in the first place? Because I was heavily recruited and made to believe this was some sort of paradise. If I knew the reality, I wouldn’t have come. Don’t you all realize that the UAE relies on foreign talent (because God knows it doesn’t exist here) and foreign investment? And you’re telling us to leave? It’s not like I came crawling over the border to scratch out a living … I was recruited here by a local company. Don’t worry, eventually word will get out that this is really just a third world country (with lots of money) where anyone other than locals are second-class citizens. Then, you will be left to yourselves.

  22. Richard on February 22, 2009 10:10 am

    The answwer to comment 5 is because of personal debts like credit cards and personal loans… which ofcourse, with the so called “THE LAND OF OPPORTUNITY, DUBAI” does not allow bankruptcy! So, either pay or get caught on the airport when going out!!!

  23. mm07 on February 23, 2009 1:05 pm

    in every country, there are special a law clauses organizing the flow. the very basic one is the staying visa. of course, there should be always laws to protect the citizens of a country from cultural, economical, social envasions. I am not local, but I totally support the emiratization initiative.
    the reasons, why Dubai is hard in in its transformation. this generation is paying the highest price for the city transformation. which is also normal, as there si should be always a generation that will pay the highest part of the price. get adjusted, be smart. this is a place for business. look back, and see what is happening in your own countries, and ask yoruself, if you could not make changes in your own places, why should you ask for changes in other places.

  24. abdullah on February 20, 2011 3:54 am

    salik sux


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