So, what’s life like in the UAE’s capital city, Abu Dhabi?
As an expatriate, most likely, you will find yourself in a social and geographical context very different than the one you grew up in.
The more you are prepared, the more you will be successful in adapting to a mix of cultures (with all the nationalities and different languages residing in the UAE) prior to setting up life in Abu Dhabi.
Here are some reasons why you might not be fond of this emirate city as a first-time visitor and above all as a prospective long-term resident:
- Those settling in Abu Dhabi will find themselves subject to a high cost of living for luxury accommodation, as on-island lodging is costly. Yet, it is possible to find areas cheaper than being in Dubai that’s known to be really expensive. However, both emirate cities have, in recent time, become much more budget friendly in desirable areas!
- Those that come to kickstart their business in UAE’s capital will find less free zone options than Dubai that offers much more regarding ownership benefits to attract investors from foreign companies who want to set up their operations in the Emirates.
- UAE’s capital has less to see and do, as well as discover—souks (markets) are far less than Dubai, for example. However, it is a city where you can see and breathe tradition and Emirati culture without the filter of the extreme modernity that Dubai has embraced.
- Abu Dhabi is said to be more laid back and quieter for those that like to relax and chill, unlike Dubai with an environment that’s busier, more crowded with added traffic congestion making it too much of a hustle and bustle city for new arrivals.
- The emirate has a hot desert climate that could be uncomfortable for some visitants. While others might be tempted to come for its sunshine nearly all-year round which is great for spending time at the beaches, taking walks in the parks, experiencing any number of sporting activities or embarking on safari excursions. The region is subject also to sandstorms.
Nonetheless, there are also many reasons to visit or choose Abu Dhabi as home. With its rich culture, seaside position and opportunities, the Emirati capital will surely not disappoint you!
Abu Dhabi vs. Dubai: Which Is Right for You—to visit, to live or work? It really depends on one’s personal needs. Many are the factors to consider. From a lifestyle point of view, for example, the selection of marvelous beach locations to the numerous grand sights, tourist attractions and activities to enjoy, on to finding adequate dining and nightlife options, nightclubs and bars or places to shop.
Whatever the choice, however, it is important to be ready for some challenges: for example, to afford lodging for the short-term – hotels or resorts, apartments or villas – which can be expensive.
So, if you still cannot decide which place to visit, live or work than take a look at what Nico de Corato, owner and founder of the DubaiBlog Network has to say about his 5 reasons to live in Dubai to have an idea of what are the pros in choosing that emirate, or read the 5 reasons why you may not like Dubai which highlight some drawbacks (the cons) for tourists and expats alike. All told, there are advantages and disadvantages to any international relocation, even heading to the UAE. It’s up to you to uncover if UAE’s capital is where the good outweighs the bad.