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Thursday, 31 July 2014

Exploring Dubai - Quick Guide to the Middle East, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Ahhh.. i can't believe it. Here I am in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. One of the seven emirates (others: Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm al-Qaiwain, Ras al-Khaimah and Fujairah) Being here not that long, but in a blink of an eye, half a year has passed. Time really flies. It all happened in a flash, getting a job offer last minute, sending in my resignation letter, going through long negotiation sessions, visa and documents arrangements, packing bags and saying goodbye, all in less than a month, boarding MAS Airlines departing to Dubai, renting room that cost RM6000/month with the Palm Jumeirah View (through AirBnb),  then later settling down in my new studio down in Dubai Marina (through Dubizzle), getting emirates id, car license (through Belhasa Centre), renting a car (through Hanco), new car hunting, finally settled down with pre-owned Peugeot 308, Red (through 4x4 Motors). Finally everything is calm. I hope, or it is just the beginning. Managing my project Viceroy Hotel.

Coming and Staying
Getting to work in Dubai is a dream for many people. And i am one of the lucky one with this opportunity. Working Global. To get in is easy, as long as you get a job, working visa application is all managed under the company you are working for. It is the norm for company to managed your transfer, as more than half the population is expat. International professionals. However living expenses at the outset is a killer... as expenses can reach up to RM8,000.00 a month due to high cost in accommodation. Getting a decent place can easily cost RM5,000.00 a month. Besides you are staying at slightly dodgy areas, poorer location, shared, of course, anything from RM500 - RM3,000 a month can be found. Always use AirBnb and Dubizzle. 

Still reckon places like JLT & Dubai Marina for working expat (Budget Range RM4000 to 8000 per month)
or International City & Discovery Garden (Budget Range RM2000 to 5000 per month)

Best Flight
Best budget flight to get here will be MAS Airlines. I have no issue with MAS although there is some disaster recently of the missing MH370 and MH17 being shot down by Ukraines/Russia due to mistaken as some plane part of their silly war. Well, all airlines happended such events but only they are cover up stories. MAS provides one of the best timing and price for Malaysians, direct flight, you will arrive in Dubai in the evening ard 7pm, just nice for checking out the city night view, have some light dinner, and have a good rest. And for departing back to Msia, you will arrive early in the morning, a bright day for some nice dim sum and catching up. Flight duration about 8 hours.

How to Get Around
Best thing about Dubai compared to other part emirates. You have the Metro! Which connects the entire city, even the Dubai International Airport. The metro running system is internationaly similar. Using top up cards called Nol Card or just buy standard tickets by the machine or counter. Unfortunately there is only two metro lines, however, it gets you to the entire Dubai City. From the closest stations to your destination, you can easily get a taxi/bus.

Of course plenty of taxi, too many. The taxi fares are actually cheaper than Malaysia. Soon, by end of 2014, there will be the new tram network which connects major part of attraction/residential areas along Dubai Marina, Palm Jumeirah, Jumeirah Lake Towers, etc. Bus, yes, they do have them too.

Another option is rent a car, you can get cheap ones about RM1,300.00 - RM2,000.00 a month. If you are on tourist visa no issue for rental, but if you have a job here, you will require to get an emirates driving license. Another thing to take note is that drivers seat are on the left side!

Well, at the end you will definitely buy a car due to cheap rates. Tax free!

Time Zone and Climate
Good thing for Malaysian, local time in Dubai is GMT +04:00, so only 4 hours slower! And for climate, well is a desert, and well, we are used to the Hot Sun, just slightly hotter. Stay indoor! Good part, there is winter months! from November to March. Which midday temperatures range between 20 to 35 Degree! At night it may fall down to like 10 degrees. Nice. Wear some cool jackets :)

Language and Religion
No big deal for Malaysians, multi-cultural. Everyone speaks English as far as i know. That's wonderful. Official languge, Arabic. Religion, Islam. Good thing about Dubai is that their culture are not that extremist compared to other parts and also very much open minded now. So you would feel much like home, respecting one and another cultures. However, Islam Law still applies, so some awareness is still encouraged. Although there are very bad and rude drivers, as many middles easterns and locals are pretty hard headed and rough, but no bad hand signals (the middle finger) and words (the F word) should be shown/spoken. You can get fined or even put into jail. Same to them.

Well best entertainment..., you get the witness the top in the world such as world tallest building/apartment, world largest mall, world largest themepark, highest star hotel, largest dancing fountain, etc, etc and etc. (You will get bored on the long run).

So, next good stuff is beaches. Everywhere there are nice beaches with plenty of cruise, jet ski, sky diving, etc. Life is peaceful here.

Theme Parks! Desert Safari, Underwater Aquariums, Waterpark, Zoo, Scenic Hotspots, etc.

Nightlife is one of the top in the world too. Just keep it inside the building! :))

My favourite, car hunting!!! Quite famous for Pre-Owned Cars, you can find many pre-owned dealers. Well buying a new Honda City here is like equivalent to buying a Proton Myvi in Malaysia. My aim at the moment, Porsche Boxster S!

The list goes on~

Up next. Desert Safari!


Cery Calasicas said...

finally...been waiting for you to update ...yeyyy!!!!

Irvine Chin said...

haha thank you for waiting!

HappySurfer said...

Hi! Thanks for stopping by. Hey, this is a great post for insider tips on Dubai. *Like*

Err.. but this is like a 4-month old post, wor. No plan to continue sharing your walk?

I say, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog,..... *grin*

Irvine Chin said...

Thanks for dropping by HappySurfer. Coming up next. Hope to see you ard^

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