As most of you may know, the UAE is a Muslim country that uses the Sharia Law as its legal system – which is derived from the Quran and Hadith. There are many elements established by the Sharia Law that might seem strange or unusual to people visiting the UAE. You have probably heard many rumours about Arabs, specifically Gulf Countries such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar or even the UAE. Most of what you hear (and by most I mean ninety-five percent) isn’t true. Everything you might read online about the UAE being an unjust country, cruel to its expats, very secular or not even allowing you to eat in public is untrue. As a resident in Dubai, I’ll tell you all you need to know about visiting, or even considering living here.
You can wear whatever you want as long as its modest enough to leave you some dignity! I never really thought of the dress code in the Dubai to be secular. I don’t even feel like there IS a dress code. I believe that the UAE has the right to input a dress code on the people because well, at the end of the day, the country is still a Muslim country. If you dress modestly, you’re not only following the rules but you’re also respecting the religion of the country that provides you financial security as well as simply leaving yourself some dignity. It’s not really a law that’s enforced in the UAE so if you feel like you want to wear short shorts, go ahead no one’s stopping you.
There’s a common misconception that you shouldn’t talk to any locals because they’re rich snobs and have everything going their way. However, that is simply not true. Emiratis are some of the kindest, most generous people you will meet in the UAE. They might come off as difficult to talk to sometimes but that’s just the way they are; deep inside they have good intentions and they’re always willing to help.
Anyone who has ever told you that the UAE is cheap is lying. If you’re ever considering coming to the UAE, specifically Dubai, bring a pocket full of money and empty luggage because you will spend A LOT of money, whether you like it or not (most of the stuff you’ll end buying is useless but you’ll still buy it).
For those who still believe we ride our camels to school… No comment.
You won’t know what a warm summer day is until you visit the UAE. It is HOT. The heat in the UAE is occasionally unbearable. I don’t know if it’s the heat, or the humidity, or the heat… It’s just hot and if you’re ever coming, make sure you’re both mentally and physically prepared to endure it.
Everything that goes on in the UAE, specially Dubai, happens in a big way. And by big I mean “Let’s break a World Record for most fireworks fired at once” big. Always keep a look out because there’s always something happening and you wouldn’t want to miss out on it.
Of course you can eat in public what kind of question is that?! There’s one time of the year where eating in public becomes illegal and actually punishable – Ramadan. Honestly, as a Muslim, I don’t have a problem with that because, well, I’m fasting. But looking at it through a Non-Muslim’s point of view, I do understand where you’re coming from. But, just like the dress-code policy, this boils down to whether or not you respect the country enough to follow their rules. For thirty days a year, the rule states no eating between sunrise and sunset in public places. Not to force you into their religion, but to respect those who are fasting and respect Islam. And there are many restaurants that shield diners from fasters during fasting hours.
The UAE is a great country to live in. The rules that the UAE imposes are not designed to impose a secular community, but rather, to create a community where everyone learns to respect each other’s beliefs. The UAE is a multi cultural country with a population of 9.2 million of which 7.3 million are expats! I really suggest you consider visiting the UAE because you will not regret it.
Source: Higher Education