Five essentials for your new Dubai lifestyle

Five essentials for your new Dubai lifestyle

Five essentials for your new Dubai lifestyle

Whether you’re new to Dubai or a long-term resident, these five essentials make living in this amazing city easier by far.

Dubai’s metro systems links downtown with the rest of the desert city, and is a life-saver for working expats reluctant to drive at busy times. Nol cards are the top-uppable means of payment and come in various forms matching up with passengers’ needs as well as giving access to bus travel. Dubai’s Gold Nol card offers luxury travel in an exclusive cabin, and the Silver Card is the choice of almost all Dubai’s residents. The service also offers Red and Blue cards for cheaper travel, and the Customised Card features your photo and a choice of designs.

Leaving home without your Emirates ID card isn’t a good idea, as it’s your proof you’re a legal resident. Government offices and hotels will need to see it, and losing it brings on a protracted and often frustrating brush with local bureaucracy. The first step is reporting your loss to the local police office, followed by an appearance at another office to apply for a replacement. Documentation required includes passport, family book, your proof of ID number and a photocopy of the lost card. Seven days later, your new card can be collected and you’re legal again.

Everyone knows Dubai is run on WhatsApp, making it the app of choice for all newly arrived expats. Your company may even have a WhatsApp group aimed at smoothing the workflow within and even outside office hours. The other tech must-have, although it’s technically illegal, is a VoIP application for contacting friends and family back home as well as friends in your new country. Oddly, Botim and C’me are government approved and won’t break the bank at Dh100 and Dh50 respectively.

Lastly, keeping in tune with Dubai’s rules is made easy by the constant reminders found on large, bilingual signs in public areas as well as by consulate-issued circulars reminding their citizens of what they can and can’t do.

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