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Expat Advice: Culture Shock in Dubai, UAE

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?


Did you receive any cross-cultural training for your move abroad? If yes, was it before or after the move?


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If they speak another language in your new country, do you speak the language? If yes, did you learn the language before you moved or while abroad? If no, are you planning to learn the language?

No I do not speak the language, I have pickd up a few words since arriving in the country but everyone speaks English so you have no ned to learn the language.

Were you worried or concerned about culture shock before you moved abroad?

No not at all

How significant was the culture shock you experienced when you moved abroad?

Very significant

The red tape in the UAE is very difficult, one needs a lot of help from the companies HR dept.

You will need to get your marriage certificate if you are married, your university degree attested before hand, You need to get a work visa drinks licence,driving licence,ID card when you arrive. If going to Abu Dhabi it takes 1 year on the waiting 1st to get into the British club.

Expats often talk about going through the "stages of culture shock." Examples include the honeymoon phase, the irritation-to-anger stage, the rejection of the culture stage, and the cultural adjustment phase. Do you feel like you went through these or any other stages as you settled into the new culture?

Yes you do go through this stages

all of them I do not know anyone who doesn't

What, if any, were some of the changes you noticed in yourself that might have been caused by culture shock? These might include things such as anger, depression, anxiety, increased eating or drinking, frustration, homesickness, etc.

Depression, anger, frustration. loneliness,

What are some things you appreciate most about the new culture?

Sun, Sea, Camping in the desert at the weekends, BBQ's with friends, eating out, free ladies night in the hotel's, the perfect weather and climate from Nov through to May

What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?

If you live in Abu Dhabi you may find yourself living 45mins plus outside the city as the only cheap accomadtion in AD is out near the airport Al Raha is slowly after 2 years only now becoming easier place to live with it now being on a bus route, and new supermarket's opening, AlReef still has very little out by the compounds in the way of taxis and shops

Meeting new friends who are likeminded

Did you "commit" any embarrassing or humorous cultural blunders? If you did and you'd like to share them, please do tell!

Do not park our car outside the yellow lines I got a parking ticket at 7:30 in the morning 200 aed

Do you have any advice or thoughts about culture shock you would like to share?

Take a deep breath and remain calm, do not get angry if you find yourself in a situation.

And it takes time to get anything done in the UAE

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Comments about this Report

Dec 14, 2010 05:44

This person appears to be a first-time expat, or at least a first-time expat in the Middle East. While she brings up some points about the laws in the UAE, they are clear to those who seek to know what they are. You need to bear in mind that while here you need to err on the side of caution where the police and laws are concerned -- we are but privileged guests here, and women are lower than that. This is a simple fact of life, I am not being derogatory. Once you relax and "go with the flow" of things, life becomes easier. You'll here "NO PROBLEM" coming to mind frequently!

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