Expat and PlaneIn most member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council, personal taxation doesn’t exist. This means that if you were to live and work in one of the countries in the Gulf region, you would enjoy tax-free living.

Needless to say, the United Arab Emirates is one of the most lucrative destinations for expats to live and work. However, it would be wise to think carefully about how you’re going to take advantage of this environment before you dive in.

Borrowing prudently

Debt is something you want to steer clear of, particularly when migrating to another country for work. It’s common for expats to finance things like a car through loans. When you meet with your dealership representatives, they will most likely recommend a bank or company for you to get a loan from.

Instead of jumping at the first recommendation they make, you should take care to shop around and make sure you get the best loan. Interest rates vary quite widely, so you should look for a loan with the best terms for you. Make sure you make use of a loan calculator during your deliberations.

Get the right bank account

When choosing a bank in your new city, your criteria should be the same as if you were picking a bank back at home.

  • Shop around to make sure that you’ve got the best interest rate.
  • Also make sure that you are aware of the various charges that the bank may impose against you for making certain transactions.

Of course, everyone’s banking needs are different, so find the account that meets your needs the best. For example, if accumulating interest is your priority, consider getting a notice account, as they normally have higher interest rates. You’ll also want to pay attention to currency risk exposure, as detailed below.

Be wary of currency risk

If you’re an expat working in the UAE, it’s most likely that you’ll be paid in the local currency. However, if you are going to be spending money in the UK (e.g. on your mortgage), you should to make sure that you have a balance of holding cash in both currencies.

This is vital for your return home after your work contract expires. You need to gradually build up a balance in your home currency, so you will reduce your account’s exposure to considerable currency fluctuations. It’s always best to play it safe.


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