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Muscat, Oman

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Feb 05, 2023

Summary: The approximate population of Muscat, Oman is 1.4 million people. People describe Muscat as a vibrant city with a mix of modern and traditional architecture, a rich cultural heritage, and a stunning natural landscape. Expats love the city's relaxed atmosphere, friendly locals, and excellent job opportunities. The weather in Muscat is generally hot and dry, with temperatures ranging from the mid-60s to the mid-90s Fahrenheit (18-35 Celsius). The average cost of living in Muscat for an expat is around $1,500-$2,000 USD per month. The cost of a one bedroom apartment is around $500-$700 USD per month, and a two bedroom apartment is around $700-$1,000 USD per month.

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What do I need to know about living in Muscat?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Muscat, they said:

"Oman is a very nice place to live. The houses are extremely large and beautiful and the climate here is safe and friendly. I would want to point out, however, that the temperatures are not as friendly. From March through October temperatures in the city appear to range from 98 F. to 125 F. plus a humidity factor of about 75-84%, or more. For the serious sports enthusiast, this means moving to indoor activities or swimming in pools that get so hot they have to be cooled for swimming. Houses are equipped with numerous air conditioners, as are all restaurants in the city, so it is not a hardship when indoors. It is even hotter if you are working in the desert! However, in November through February, the temperatures moderate and trees and flowers are planted everywhere. Driving here can be treacherous, as the drivers drive fast and very recklessly. The international schools here are excellent and there are many groups and activities available for everyone. All in all, this is a very nice place to live," explained one expat living in Muscat, Oman.

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What do I need to know before moving to Muscat?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Muscat, they said:

"No doubt. Certainly Oman is wonderful place to spend life if you are nature lover and believe in family life. The best location to move in are Al Khuwair, Al -Athaibah, Al Seeb and Al Qurum. These are decent locations with shopping mall in close vicinity," explained one expat living in Muscat, Oman.

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How do I find a place to live in Muscat?

We asked expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"Well, I got my accommodation through my employer in decent location. The apartment was spacious and well furnished with all basic amenities provided," added another expat who made the move to Muscat.

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How do I meet people in Muscat?

When we asked people living in Muscat about club and activities where newcomers can meet others, they responded:

"If there is an American Women's Group (AWG), or other English-speaking group of women, join them, even if it doesn't sound like your thing. You will find a vast amount of knowledge, experience and advice, as well as new friends there. Although it sounds exclusive, our AWG has members from all over the world, including our host country, so you will make new contacts from a variety of locations. Also, if you have school-age children, immediately get involved in the school's parent volunteer or PTA program and volunteer for a committee...you will make friends faster, and that will be your saving grace on those days you feel homesick," commented one expat who made the move to Muscat.

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William Russell Health Insurance

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

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William Russell Health Insurance

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

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What should I bring when moving to Muscat?

People living in Muscat were asked what three things they wish they had brought and three they wish they had left behind. They wrote:

"Three things I would have bought are culture, respect and nature. Three things I would have left are infrastructure development, events and happenings and traffic accidents," added another expat in Muscat.

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Will I be able to find a job in Muscat?

When we asked people about industries and career opportunities in Muscat, they reponded:

"Petroleum development is the main industry here, with many of the expat jobs revolving around that," added another expat in Muscat.

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What is life like in Muscat?

When we asked people living in Muscat what life is like and how people spend their time, they said:

"The Omani citizens appear to be very family oriented, with God (Allah) playing a major role in their lives. Although Islam is the main religion, there are other houses of worship in this country, including Protestant, Catholic, Hindi and others. We are asked to respect the Muslim holidays. However, we are not expected to fast during Ramadan, just to be respectful of their culture and eat in private, etc. The country has moved into the modern age, with cell phones, email and other modern technology and services," remarked another expat living in Muscat, Oman.

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Is there a lot of diversity? Are people in Muscat accepting of differences?

"The Omanis are actually a small percentage of the people in this city, as labor is mostly imported from other countries such as India, the Phillipines, Sri Lanka and others. In addition, many of the technical experts here are imported from Europe and the United States. The Omanis appear to be very friendly and tolerant and even interested in the differences of the Europeans and Americans; however, the laborer tend to be looked down upon," remarked another expat living in Muscat, Oman.

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William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance in Oman

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
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What are the schools in Muscat like?

"If you value good education, consider other options. As this school is not regulated by any governing body in the UK, they make up their own rules. There are children that have been kicked out of International schools in Muscat that this school has taken in. They have had cases of bullying, racism and sexism. Although the good teachers are few and far between, there are staff that act like they are there on holiday," commented one expat when asked about British School Muscat in Muscat.

"Don't bother. I can guarantee the one good review on this school on this site was written by a member of staff. If your company pays for your children to be at this school while you wait for a better school then that is fine. Do not waste your own money on this school though, you are better off keeping them at home," explained one expat in Muscat, Oman with kids at TLC International School.

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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