Living and Working in the Gulf States - Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia

From 2003 to 2018, Dave lived and worked in GCC countries including UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Kuwait. He had a great time!

Opportunities in the Gulf

I enjoy working in the Middle East, having serviced contracts and projects in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman and Saudi Arabia.

Most of the work here is in Energy and Construction but there are jobs and contracts in other fields too, as the Gulf States mature and diversify. (My own field is Broadcast Engineering).

Living and working abroad is not for everyone, but if you have a touch of the pioneering spirit and a skill to offer, you could do worse than spend a few months or years in the Middle East, a part of the World that is riding out the Global recession better than most.

friday prayer time outside muntazah mosque

friday prayer time outside muntazah mosque

Satellite View of the Gulf States

Where are the Gulf States?

The Gulf States are the eight countries and territories that surround the Persian (or Arabian) Gulf - Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Oman. Except for Iran and Iraq, all are members of the Gulf Cooperation Council or GCC, a political and economic union.

The United Arab Emirates, or UAE, is one country made up of seven small hereditary emirates or kingdoms: Abu Dhabi (the capital), Dubai, Ajman, Sharjah, Ras al Khaimah, Fujairah and Umm al Quwain. Because of the different characters and foreign allegiances of the ruling families, the individual emirates are quite distinct societies. Sharjah, for example, is a strictly traditional Islamic state quite unlike its Westernised neighbour, Dubai. There are no land border controls within the Emirates, so visitors (and nationals) can move freely between them.

Europeans or Americans would have to have a very good reason to choose Iran or Iraq at present, but all of the other Gulf States are well worth considering if you have a sense of adventure and fancy a change of scene.

Update, February 2012:

The Arab Spring popular revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt triggered a wave of protest movements throughout the region. In Bahrain, heavy handed policing of protests caused a number of deaths and injuries and the situation is still not resolved, though an uneasy calm has been restored. There are Sunni/Shia tensions in this tiny kingdom but inequality and corruption were at least as much to blame. For the ex-pat communities, it is more or less business as usual, but check latest information before travelling here.

The UAE, Qatar and Kuwait generally look after their nationals fairly well, so it is unlikely that the unrest will spread to these territories. However, Iran and Saudi are powerful and unpredictable, so things can change quickly. Again, always check before travelling.

July 2013: The above still applies. Also, the war in Syria has increased the likelihood of terrorist activity throughout the region, though to date UAE and Qatar remain safe.

Update, January 2018

Qatar has been illegally blockaded by Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt since June 2017. This has affected businesses, both in Qatar and in the blockading countries, and has impinged on local families and education. For the ex-pat worker or contractor in Qatar, little has changed and life goes on much as normal. However, travel between Qatar and their former neighbours has become difficult and expensive. There are no more direct flights. To travel from Doha to Dubai, for example, involves a layover in a neutral country, Oman or Kuwait, and a second flight. This makes a weekend trip barely worth the effort and expense.

the summers are very hot here!

the summers are very hot here!

What do the Gulf States have in common?

They are all Arab countries*, with Arabic as the national language, though a lot of business is conducted in English. They are all Islamic (Muslim) countries. They have more than their fair share of desert, with searing heat in summer and very little rainfall. Mostly they are rich, from oil and gas reserves, though this wealth is not evenly distributed. And all are engaged in a huge expansion programme with burgeoning construction of roads, airports, resorts, residential and hotel properties, banking, commercial and retail centres and all the 'must haves' of consumerist modernity.

*(except Iran, which is Persian, not Arab, with Farsi the national language).

And the differences?

Mostly the differences are in degree. Though all are Islamic, Dubai & Abu Dhabi (both in the United Arab Emirates), Bahrain and Oman are relatively open and tolerant societies, (but don't expect them to be like Sweden, OK?) while Qatar, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia are much stricter in their adherence to Sharia law and therefore generally less comfortable for the expatriate communities. Having said that, in Saudi it's normal for Western ex-pats to live in compounds within which there are certain freedoms. Personally I don't like compounds, but each to their own.

winter sunset over aramco compound, saudi arabia

winter sunset over aramco compound, saudi arabia

What's good about working in the Gulf?

There are many opportunities to work on big projects, and not just in oil, gas and construction. Most disciplines are in demand here, and are often very well paid. Earnings can be tax free, though this may depend on your home country's policy on overseas income and whether you are paid locally or into a bank back home.

The experience of working closely with people from all over the world is of inestimable personal value if you approach it with an open mind. You will not like everything you see, but you can learn a great deal about your place in the world. In particular, you learn that your own country doesn't have all the answers.

On a more basic level, the streets are generally safer than most Western cities, with low personal crime rates. Hospitality, friendliness and politeness are valued and widely practised, both as a religious duty and as a way of life.

Though the prevailing culture is Arab and Islamic (which are not one and the same, by the way) there is also great diversity owing to the various immigrant communities and this is reflected in the enormous range of small shops and restaurants waiting for you if you just venture outside the glitzy malls and hotels and explore the streets.

'working' in dubai's safa park

'working' in dubai's safa park

Understanding the 'package'

In the Gulf region, a job comes with a 'package', not a simple wage deal. The package comprises remuneration and any or all of: accommodation, transport, health insurance, marriage allowance, children's education, leave entitlement, home visits and more. The package on offer also depends on the applicant's home country. Employers offer what they have to to fill the vacancies. A Filipino or Sri Lankan will be offered less than a European for the same work, even if identically qualified. It may not be fair, but with no workers' representation it's not about to change. Always check the full package before signing up.

What are the risks?

If you take a contract with a major European or American company, (there are plenty in the Gulf), you can't come to much harm, provided you stay on the right side of the law. More about that later. If you choose to work directly to a local employer, the rewards can be higher, but you should be aware of a few things and take appropriate care:

  • Your employer is also your sponsor. You cannot work for anyone else if he does not release you.
  • You cannot leave the country without an exit visa issued by your employer/sponsor. (This varies from country to country).
  • There is a culture of late or withheld payment, even among respected companies.

You do not have 'normal' employee's rights. Always research carefully before taking any contract in this part of the world. Abuse of 3rd World immigrant labour forces is all too common. Specialists and professionals are generally treated better, but with notable exceptions.

Driving - the biggest risk

The standard of driving across the region is very low. Serious accidents and fatalities are an every day occurrence. It is rare to drive for even half an hour without seeing several dangerously irresponsible road safety violations, often committed by young guys in grossly overpowered 4x4's. Upturned Land Cruisers and flattened Corollas are just part of the landscape. Take care!

Staying out of trouble

Throughout the Middle East, the police tend to lock you up first and worry about it later, which could mean when somebody outside realises you're missing and makes enquiries. The best advice is to stay out of their notice. In particular:

  • Don't get into fights. Being in the right is no defence.
  • Don't get into debt. Imprisonment for debt is common.
  • Drinking in hotel bars is legal, but appearing drunk on the street is an offence.
  • There is zero tolerance of drink driving. One drink is over the limit.
  • Any accident is by definition your fault if you've had any alcohol at all.
  • Drug offenses are taken extremely seriously.
  • Homosexual activity is a criminal offence and severely dealt with.
  • Unmarried cohabitation is illegal, though sometimes tolerated.
  • Avoid indiscreet behaviour in public with a member of the opposite sex.

The interpretation of this last one varies enormously from country to country and could (and very likely will) be the subject of a hub of its own. Do also bear in mind that even more care should be taken during the Holy Month of Ramadan.

Thank you for reading.

Comments are welcome, but...

Please note that this article is about what it is like to live and work in the Gulf States. I can talk about that from fifteen years experience here. What I can't do is give specific details on how to obtain visas and other immigration technicalities. Every case is different. Besides which, it doesn't matter what I say, if the authorities say something different. By definition, they are right!

Questions & Answers

Question: I'm planning to move from Muscat to Bahrain. Can you tell me what kind of differences I may experience regarding my social life?

Answer: Bahrain is more liberal and Westernised. Also, being much smaller, you will spend less time and money on taxis!

Question: I am a geologist in Nigeria and I want to work in any of the Gulf countries. Please, how do I start?

Answer: You need to apply for a position before coming to the GCC countries, either through an agency or directly through a contracting company. You can research this on the Internet.

Question: Are you allowed to have love affairs with the opposite sex mostly in Qatar?

Answer: Legally, no, you are not. But in Qatar there is widespread tolerance providing that you behave discreetly in public.

Question: Can someone that has graduated from University travel to Dubai for work in a better paying job? How much would it cost to get Dubai work VISA?

Answer: Usually some experience is required. Fresh graduates are seen as too much of a risk. The price of a visa depends on your home country and is easily researched online.

Question: I am Indian telecom professional looking for opportunities in UAE. I hold a valid Indian passport. What is your advice?

Answer: Research the main Indian companies working in your field and apply directly to them, while also pursuing the agency route in parallel.

Question: Why can't girls from other countries work in Doha Qatar?

Answer: Adult women (but not minors) can work in Doha. Like men, they need to have a contract and a sponsor organised before coming.

Question: Friends are sponsoring me to work in the gulf is this safe to go?

Answer: Yes, the GCC countries are generally safe to go and work. Just stay on the right side of the law and you should be fine.

Question: Who are the best recruiters for GCC? I reside in the U.S., been applying on Bayt but I haven't received a single feedback. Any help is appreciated.

Answer: There is a lot of competition for GCC placement. Bayt is a good agency but it is also worth targeting specific companies. You might also follow Linkedin for notice of who is recruiting in your field.

Question: How are Arabs from North Africa treated in GCC? My husband is from Morocco and seems to feel he won't be welcomed and may have trouble finding work. I'm American and am exploring English teaching jobs in the GCC area. When trying to decide between GCC and S. Asia, I thought him being Arab and speaking the language would be an easier transition, but he's hesitant.

Answer: There is certainly a blatant racial hierarchy in place in the GCC countries with the locals at the top of the tree. Your husband is right to suspect that the playing field is not level. There are many North Africans working in these countries, often in Government Departments (civil service) where business is conducted in Arabic. Also, in UAE and Qatar, the locals are often quite happy not to work, as they can afford not to, so there is a need for ex-pat Arabic-speakers in many areas. This is less true in Oman and Bahrain where locals do more of the work themselves. Saudi has plenty of people to fill unskilled jobs but there is an education deficit, so they always need ex-pat professionals, Arabic speakers especially. But I don't think either of you would see Saudi as a first choice!

Question: i have been trying to get a job in the Abu Dhabi and Dubai area for a couple of months now. I am a mechanical engineer with 5 years of experience and I have my Masters degree in business administration/engineering technology. I applied for over 100 jobs and I have not heard anything back. Now I have been living in Abu Dhabi for about a week, and I went to recruiting agencies to hand out my CV. I am still having issues landing an interview. Is this something common?

Answer: There is a lot of competition for most of the available vacancies, making it difficult for applicants. However - please take this as a well-meant suggestion - I had to make several grammatical corrections to your question (mostly capitalisation and punctuation) before it could pass the HubPages standard for publication. If there are similar shortfalls in your CV and covering letters, this may be causing a problem. When faced with a surplus of applications, all recruiters will apply a 'professionalism' filter to create their shortlist.

Question: Is there any way for a Muslim who works in an oil rig to perform jummah prayer on Friday?

Answer: I have never worked on an oil rig, but I am sure that on the Arabian Gulf rigs provision is made for Muslims to perform jummah prayer on Fridays. On rigs elsewhere, e.g., the North Sea, there will be a prayer room, but probably no facility for the large congregational jummah prayer.

Question: I am a qualified Medical lab Technician living in the UK can I find a job in one of the Gulf States?

Answer: Yes, through the usual agencies, or by applying direct if you know of any vacancies.

Question: I am working as a country head in India. I am 53 years old. I would like to work in the Gulf States. Does my age matter?

Answer: For staff positions, age 60 is usually the cut-off point, though of course, individual employers may have different ideas. For fixed-term contract work, older workers may still be considered if their skill set is desirable.

Question: Can I change jobs in Kuwait?

Answer: If you leave your present job amicably and with good reason (e.g. completion of a contract period) you should be able to obtain a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from your (old) employer which may be a requirement for securing a new job without leaving the country. However, this regulation varies from state to state, so you should check the current requirements in Kuwait.

Question: I am a Nigerian and have got job offers in Abu Dhabi. Is it okay to be scared of relocating to the gulf?

Answer: Abu Dhabi is a pretty safe place as long as you stay the right side of the law. The biggest dangers are road accidents and heat exhaustion. But coming from Nigeria, you should be well aware of both.

Question: I currently work in Saudi as a doctor. If I leave at the end of my contract without proper resignation, by going on terminal leave and not returning, and then I get another job offer in another GCC country like Oman, are there any negative consequences if I accept the new job in Oman?

Answer: You will probably be OK, depending on the thoroughness of the Omani vetting process. However, you will not be able to return to Saudi if your previous exit is not correctly documented.

Comments, newest on top

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on October 11, 2019:

Sorry, but I can't discuss salaries. That is between you and your employer.

Sandip Jadhab on October 10, 2019:

I m Indian. And I have 8 years of experience in tool room. , recruiter confirm me to tool room team leader. Salery discuss pending naw. Tell me Best figures of salery. Post of team leader. In baharain. (Manama)

Louise Powles from Norfolk, England on February 14, 2019:

I lived in Abu Dhabi in the late 80's, and loved my time there. I wish I could go back. It was such an exciting time in my life.

Robert Winston on January 08, 2019:

To know oneself is to be around your other people so we must; combine the minds and care and come stronger

msngal. bhai on October 17, 2018:

good. country. Dubai

SUNDAR LAL on October 12, 2018:

Sir I am Sundar Lal i am OPERATION THEATRE TECHNICIAN i want to work in Gulf country so please guide me

Seema yadav on October 05, 2018:

I am.working in qatar just wanna go back india ...life is hell in qatar dont come guys here people have very poor and cruel heart...hete

AVM Tilak Dissanayake (Rtd) on October 01, 2018:

Thanks Dave for the article with the view of helping others to secure jobs in the Gulf. You have covered everything. I too got bogus responses from Oil Companies which I double checked with registered office on websites and found that the address and the phone numbers given on the authentic looking letterhead is different from official details given on web and they go to the extent of plating a person to reply at the bogus phone to try and exhort money. I hear Gulf Countries do not charge any money but actually pay the agency a commission whilst air ticket everything is provided free. Is that correct?

Satyaveersingh on September 27, 2018:

Sir im best driver India drivering experience 10years and Saudi Arabia drivering experience 4years and licensed

tujar gerdas on September 26, 2018:

i am looking for jobs in middle east. i am from ethiopia. it is hard to get job only by applying online websites. how can i get?

buddha on September 03, 2018:

Thank you

Ahsan Aftab on July 01, 2018:

i am a software engineer from Pakistan. i want to go Gulf States please suggest me which country is better for my profession i.e: Oman & Dubai.


kenny on May 05, 2018:

Dear sir

i totally agree with you on the issue of careless and reckless driving

very common here in Bahrain, also smoking excessive and driving while operating a phone

houses are quite expensive too..

food is good and of different varieties

Urdu language spoken more than even the Arabic(very large population of Pakistanis)

so take that in mind while visiting here

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 26, 2018:

Thank you for commenting :)

Maddy on January 26, 2018:

That's pretty nice article.. you have covered most of the aspects.. Appreciate for writing!

Tim Scanlon on April 25, 2017:

Thanks for posting this informative article.

ALI on April 04, 2017:


I am Iranian .I have more than 20 years experience in civil engineering and consulting engineers in watershed manage ment.

can i have a respectable job in countries near Persian gulf?


ganesh ulmale on December 25, 2016:


i had completed my btech degree in mechanical engineering and now iam pursuing my mba degree.

my plan is to get 1 yr experience from any of the company then after 1 year move down to middle east countries for working purpose???

can you suggest me sir will it be possible??

is these a correct decision??


Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on November 07, 2016:

There is no trick to this. Apply only to/through established companies and agencies. Do some background research before committing.

fareed khan on November 01, 2016:

Dear sir, I want to know that how can i check our job employer and company is not fack for gulf job please suggest easy way to find gulf job without any risk .

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on May 24, 2016:

Hi Milana - It is absolutely possible. Most jobs in the Gulf are secured by remote research, telephone interview and submission of qualifications. As a woman on your own, you would find KSA very restrictive, e.g. not allowed to drive and not allowed to be in a car with any male non-family member. I would suggest targeting UAE, Bahrain, Oman and Qatar, all before Kuwait or KSA.

Milana on May 23, 2016:

Hello Sir.

I'm muslim from Central Asia. Is it possible to find female job before moving to gulf countries, for example KSA or Kuwait?

suresh on March 22, 2016:

i am searching job in gulf country ,please tell me which country best for job like abu Dhabi or dubai or Saudi .give preference in those countries

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on November 05, 2015:

Rajendra - sorry, don't know. I've not been to India for ten years.

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on November 05, 2015:

Ameen - the ONLY reason to choose Saudi over UAE would be if the pay was substantially higher. If it is the same, UAE is the obvious choice.

Rajendra on November 04, 2015:

Plzzzzzzzzzz Suggest some best gulf job consultants in india

Ameen on November 01, 2015:

Hello bro,

i got an offer from both ksa and uae with same pay. i thought the uae growth rate is very higher than ksa for my career.

is this correct ? pls suggest

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on September 11, 2015:

Boma, why not? Go for it, and good luck!

Boma West on September 07, 2015:

Hello! this thread & post has been nothing short of amazing , i'm enthralled, scared with lota butterflies in my tummy ! whew! ok... down to the crux of the matter . i'm 25 , Nigerian , SINGLE& trying to score a job with Total E&P Qatar , do i stand a chance with all these stringent laws?

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on July 01, 2015:

rakv - in this part of the World, issues are usually resolved by escalation within a command structure, rather than by appealing to external authority. Your two recourses are therefore to your agency (if appointed through an agency) and your line manager and/or HR dept in the company. Exhaust these avenues before thinking of involving third parties. And remain calm, polite and respectful, whatever you may be thinking!

rakv on June 30, 2015:

Sir, plz help me to sort out that 8 th issue.

Is embassy helps ? Or who helps to get my passport back?

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on June 29, 2015:


1. yes

2. no idea

3. depends what you can earn at home

4. depends what you spend

5. generally, yes

6. yes

7. not enough info - how many days/week?

8. cry ;)

rakv on June 29, 2015:

Sir, i got placed through campus recruitment in garment industry in East riffa part of the Bahrain. They are giving me the 263 BHD + bachelor sharing accommodation + 1 time food allowance+ transportation + work permit visa+flight ticket+ Medical facility.

So my questions are-

1. Is it a safe country for Indians to work?

2. How to get Security clearance certificate?

3. Is this a good package or not?

4. How much am i able to save ?

5. Are locals are helpful or not?

6. If i went to places such as tourist attractions , malls or beaches alone, so will it be safe for me or not ?

7. Working hrs are 11. So is it normal or not?

8. In case if company took my passport and not giving back, so in that case what should i do?

Vinaym1 on May 07, 2015:

I wish to get in touch with Mr. Sameer for an employment offer. I just got on this website and not sure of how to use its functions well.

His comment was:

sameer 4 weeks ago

Dear sir

How i get job in baharain or oman i am a welder from govt. institute, ncvt apprentice ship from mnc company, and graduate diploma (mechanical) pass from new delh now i have 12 years experience in this field can u please show me way for getting job in baharain or oman


Can someone help me get in touch with him? Thanks

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on April 05, 2015:

Sameer - direct approach to contracting firms who have project work in these areas, or, apply through an agency like Monstergulf.com

sameer on April 02, 2015:

Dear sir

How i get job in baharain or oman i am a welder from govt. institute, ncvt apprentice ship from mnc company, and graduate diploma (mechanical) pass from new delh now i have 12 years experience in this field can u please show me way for getting job in baharain or oman


Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on December 13, 2014:

Hi Khaleel - it is usually a bad idea, especially if you want to return to Kuwait in the future. Unclosed visas can cause a lot of problems for your current sponsor and for yourself, later.

khaleel on December 08, 2014:

hello sir,

i would like to ask one question is possible to go other country for job (oman) without cancelleation of kuwait working visa, please let me know sir weather am eligible or not to go other cauntry (oman) for job purpose

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on September 18, 2014:

Arun - I can't answer questions on visa issues because the authorities are, well, the authorities! I can say that Oman is a good place to work. Good luck:)

arun on September 14, 2014:


I am an Indian currently working in Bahrain. Now I got an offer from Oman. But my bahrain employer is not ready to give me exit. So can I go to Oman without cancelling visa. If possible should I do medical examination from India?

Ravi on June 20, 2014:

Dear All,

I am 30 year old, working as an assistant professor in computer science department of a private college. I am facing lots of problem in my current job. I feel I am not getting paid well enough as per my experience and qualifications. I am MCA, M.Tech. with more than fiver years of teaching experience of various UG and PG courses. I am looking for teacher/lecturer job abroad.

I have applied for many jobs via job searching portals. I have also sent emails to universities' email id (when there is a requirement in it). But I haven't got any response.I don't have money to pay some agent or consultancy services. I can pay once I get the job. Since I am financially not that strong.

I am preparing for TOEFL as someone suggested that it is required to work abroad.

I want you to please help me with following issues.

1. Please let me know in which direction and how should I proceed to get a job.

2. I have read that there is a process known as Skilled Immigration Visa, point based test etc. for New-Zealand, Australia, Canada etc. I want to know what is the total cost for this process and how to do it?

3. If anyone of you are working in these countries or similar job profile, then please guide me.

your suggestion would be a great help.

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on June 01, 2014:

I can't give any information about the company but I'd suggest holding out for a signed contract before travelling.

fazal laiq on May 28, 2014:

Hello Sir...

I am fazal laiq from INDIA got recruited as an electrical engineer for marine force co. In saudi arabia my consultancy agency told me that above mentioned company is a contractor of ministry of defence & aviation saudi arbia (MODA) but the problem is that they issue a lobour visa instead of engineer vis........what I have to do...???....is it a trap.....??....suggest me.....if possible give information about the company. ...


Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on May 01, 2014:

Nitish - as a general rule, new graduates can't easily secure good jobs in Bahrain (or the other Gulf countries). Companies here are looking for experienced people who can hit the ground running. Training is not often part of the package. Better to decide what area of work you like, gain some experience locally, then apply to use your proven skills in Bahrain.

Nitish on May 01, 2014:

i am now in 3 rd year of engineering . but i dont have any confidence on my engineering brnach IT . now i am in 2nd year of Bachlour of arts in marathi. i want to come to baharin to earn money.plese just tell me any professional course that i sould do in india to work in baharain as on that course with a good professional job........i want to earn money and i ill to go us and uk for MBA through baharin........so plese tell me what should i do?

if am getiing the lowest job there then how can i earn and how much i can save?

zoya on April 23, 2014:


I am a commerce graduate and completed cs (company secretaryship) this year. m from India, i have completed LL.B. as well and have working knowledge in Computer, since i am a fresher and want to work in Dubai, wud prefer Banks first,sir plz guide me whether i wud have job opportunities there with above mentioned qualifications

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on April 12, 2014:

Arun - I have not worked in Iraq so I have no first hand experience of the country, whereas I have worked in Saudi Arabia.

Since you say that personal safety is your primary concern, I think there is only one possible answer. Iraq is still politically unstable and the scene of almost daily violent atrocities. While statistically the chances are not high of being a victim of such an event, the risk to life and limb is certainly much higher in Iraq than in Saudi.

Saudi is a restrictive regime but it is safe and non-violent, provided you stay on the right side of the law.

On the issue of withheld payment, this varies from employer to employer. Best advice is not to start work without a proper signed legal contract and try to remain on good professional terms with your employer/sponsor, not least because he also has to sign your exit permit without which you cannot leave the country.

Arun G Arali on April 11, 2014:

Mr Dave McClure,

Namaste. I am an Anaesthetist and Intensivist from India. I am looking for some overseas appointments in the Gulf nations. I presently have two good offers in my hands; one from MOH Iraq and one from a private medical establishment in Saudi Arabia. I haven't been given good reviews by some of my acquaintances and friends about working in Iraq or Saudi Arabia, even for doctors. Having read your review about working in the Gulf, I request your opinion about review about the current situation for working as a doctor there. My main concerns are about safety to life and career. Also, you mentioned something about 'held-up' or 'delayed' payments.

Do guide me. Would be generous if you could let me communicate by email. My mail ID is arunarali144@gmail.com

Thank you.

Have a nice day. Take care and stay happy always, as always.

mohammad on April 03, 2014:

Hi, I am looking for a recruitment agency that places my CV at interesting companies (not for free).

I am senior IT project manager from Germany and I found it difficult to get attention when I apply because IT roles are overrolled within several hours by hundrets of applications.

Are there recruitment agencies for UAE or Qatar that do such a job for reasonable costs? thanks.

Rasid ullah Bora on March 29, 2014:

hello sir i am a graduate of economics i have an 5 years experience of data entry operator + supervisor in bharti airtel telecom. i want job in gulf country please help me sir.

e-mail address-rasidullah@gmail.com

mobile no-+918876155718

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on March 28, 2014:

saa - most business is conducted in English in the UAE and Qatar, as it is the second language and common 'meeting ground' of almost all the expat workers (and the locals too). Senior management tend to be locals and high level decisions are taken in Arabic board rooms, but for the rest of us English is enough.

saa on March 27, 2014:

Hello sir

Am an indian b pharma female with 6 yrs experience in govt dispensary ...wish 2 work in gulf ..will u plz guide me ....I don't know arabic or any foreign language....

lili on March 26, 2014:

thank you very much.

Its so long ....I am just afraid to have a negative answer after ages .

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on March 26, 2014:

lili - it could take another month, but it's unpredictable. There's nothing you can do to accelerate the process, other than gently reminding your future sponsor that you're still waiting.

lili on March 26, 2014:


I am a French citizen and I am waiting my Security clearance from Abu Dhabi for a local Bank . It has been one month now. Could you please tell me how long it usually takes and do you have any tips?


p. siva naga bala bhaskar on March 18, 2014:

Hi sir , this is bhaskar form india. I doing b-pharmacy final year last simester . I want job in uae in pharmaceutical industery.

How can i get job?

What are the deatial to apply for job?

My dream is work in uae. Can tell me the details , how to full fill my dream sir. This is my email id Bhaskar.bala6@gmail.com

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on March 17, 2014:

Akshay - you are a student and you want to go straight into consultancy? Consultants are people with loads of experience behind them. No-one will listen to a student with no serious project experience.

Akshay davne on March 16, 2014:

Hello sir ,

I am an Indian and right now i'm student in civil engineer in diploma & this is a my 2nd semister running . I wanna work in US OR UK countries. please give me the detail procedure to get a fresher job there.

How i get a job in this contries ?

Am i go for a consultancy or not ?

Email : akshaydawne@gmail.com

bikash on March 12, 2014:

Paraglider sir,

i am also from India but i have 8 months experience only.i wanna work in gulf countries ,if u have contact any Indian contractor or any link ,please provide me.how to get a job soon and please let me know how to apply for jobs. please reply me.

Amaan khan on March 02, 2014:

Dear sir,

Could you tell me about Security Clearance for bahrain job.what they do in Security Clearance ...?

Stacy on February 26, 2014:

I am From Hongkong working here in pharmaceutical company as a regulatory affair specialist from last 4 years. what the chance of jobs in gulf in my field without arabic language and B.PHARMA. I HAVE DONE B.SC in Biotec FROM HONGKONG UNIVERSITY AND M.SC also from Hong Kong university. So what the chance of job for Hongkong Passport holder there. because i hear that salary over there depend on color of passport.

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on February 20, 2014:

That's the spirit :) When you've settled in, feel free to post your experiences here, ok?

WineGirl on February 20, 2014:

Thanks Paraglider - that's what I had though! Only girl in the team so think they are being over protective! :)

I'm looking forward to the opportunity and will make the most of it and add a day or two!

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on February 20, 2014:

WineGirl - you shouldn't have a problem in Dubai. Of course you'll come across some sexist clowns, but as long as you are reasonably confident and assertive, you should be fine. I think it could be a rewarding opportunity.

WineGirl on February 20, 2014:


I work in the UK for an American company (I am English).

My work involves on-site software training for hotels in EMEA.

A hotel in Dubai need training - I feel / think that I'm OK to go (I will be alone) but a few of my male colleagues have concerns about safety and if I will be respected for my business knowledge....

Any advice/views welcome!


Ami on February 11, 2014:

I have done M Pharma (Pharmacology with 72%) with 8 years of indutrsy experience. Pl tell me which is best Pharmaceutical Co., or Healthcare Centre to work in Gulf Countries?...Reply plzzzzzz

Rao on February 03, 2014:


Am software professional will be traveling soon to Qatar from India on Business Visa. Am Hepatitis B Positive. Heard that couple of medical tests been conducted after reaching there. Is my case can cause any issue against Visa rules? waiting for your reply.

Thanks in advance....

Gajanand on February 03, 2014:

Dear Paraglider,

I am from India.

I have done my B.tech. in Electronic Instrumentation and Control Engineering, I have two years of experience in petrochemical field looking for Instrumentation, Automation, Metering.

My financial background is very poor and I am looking for high paid job, specially in gulf .

Would you please help me what is the scope for instrumentation, how much experience is expected and what are the ways.

Please help me.

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 29, 2014:

Seshu - the process is simply to apply directly or through an agency before travelling to the country. If successful, you just jump through the various hoops when asked.

Nizar - they are looking for communicable diseases. They are trying to keep these out of the country. If you are in good health there should be no problem.

Rynhard - a good salary depends on your expectations and earning potential back home. And on whether you want to live modestly (within your allowance) or expansively while in Kuwait. But in Kuwait there is not a great deal to do so it is easy to save most of your money.

rynhard on January 29, 2014:

Good Day I have a opertunity in kuwait as a golf professional. What would be a good salary in dollars. Thank you

Nizar on January 26, 2014:

Dear Author,

Thank you so much for sharing your details. Actually they have informed that they will be doing a blood test and an Xray. I just want to know in blood test wat all will be covered and in xray what all will be covered. As they have mentioned they are going to test HIV, Hepatitis B and Tuberculosis.

Please share your thoughts on this same.



Seshu on January 26, 2014:

Hi, What is the process to get Lecturer job in Oman ? On what areas they test us ?. I belong to India and willing to work in Oman.

Any help is appreciated.

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 24, 2014:

Nizar - they do a blood test before issuing your Dubai ID card. They are screening for a few communicable diseases including tuberculosis (TB). If you are suffering from TB you won't be allowed into the country but to be honest that would be the least of your worries. Health is more important than work.

Nizar on January 24, 2014:

Dear Author,

All my security clearance and other stuffs are done. There is a medical test there in Dubai it seems after reaching there. Its for TB something it seems. If we are currently having that and if we inform them previously before taking this test, will this work out,,, or will we be not allowed to get into Dubai.... Please share your comments.

Ranjan raja on January 21, 2014:

Hi Marieryan - glad you enjoyed your Abu Dhabi secondment. It's a good place. One of the most mature of the Gulf States. Thanks for the read.

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 20, 2014:

Tannayr - they are just checking your passport details don't throw up any red flags on a search, e.g. criminal records or membership of proscribed organisations. But usually the delay is just inefficiency and backlog. Two weeks is not long in the Gulf!

tannayr on January 20, 2014:

Dear Paraglider,

Wanted to know what entails Security Clearance for a Abu Dhabi job? It is more than 2 weeks that I have submitted all my documents for security clerance. However even today, I was told by my employer that they have not received the clerance. How much time does it take?

Thanking you in anticipation.


Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 16, 2014:

ahamed - I think they take fingerprints for subsequent security use when they issue your residence permit but not as part of any retrospective foreign screening process.

Nizar - most unlikely

Nizar on January 16, 2014:

Dear Author,

Thanks for your update.

Actually my Security clearance is done.

Is there any chance of rejecting my Visa or something.

ahamedshafi on January 15, 2014:

Thanx sir.

Is there any finger prints in oman immigration?

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 15, 2014:

Nizar, typically 4 to 6 weeks.

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 15, 2014:

LisaTem - in practice, you can't force your employers to do something they don't want to do, so really the best people to advise you are the HR department of your sponsor. They will be able to explain their policy in your situation.

Ahamedshafi - if the Oman CID have approved your entry there shouldn't be any trouble. They certainly won't send you to Bahrain. The worst that could happen (and it's very unlikely) is repatriation.

Nizar on January 15, 2014:

Hello Author,

Could you please let me know how much time will it take to get a employment visa for abu dhabi as all formalities are over from my end.



ahamedshafi on January 15, 2014:

Dear Sir,

My owner from bahrain complained a theft case in bahrain after i come back from bahrain to india. They complained in india too and inquiry came here and i attended and solved here.

When one of the company from dubai applied work visa, it shows life ban on my passport. Then my passport expired, and i get the new passport.

Another company from Oman they applied in work visa, they got and soon i m going to muscat.

If i go mustcat, is there any issues? my fingerprints are same, if they found me, will they send me to bahrain or send back me to India? i have 3 kids, with ur advise, i have to decide whether i have to go or not? pls advise

LisaTem on January 13, 2014:

Hi, thanks for your reply. Do you know where I could find the information, or any information regarding visa/working laws in Abu Dhabi? I have found bits on the internet but don't fully understand and would prefer to speak to someone who can explain it all to me in simple terms!! Thanks in advance

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 12, 2014:

LisaTem - sorry, I don't know the answer to that one. I've never heard of a married couple securing two packages independently. That's not to say it can't be done, but I don't know if it is allowed or not. Maybe someone else can help?

LisaTem on January 12, 2014:

Hi, Please could you help me with the following. I am considering working in Abu Dhabi as a teacher, the package offers accommodation, flights, medical and 2 free school places. However, my husband also plans to work but has not secured a job yet. We plan to move in August and we hope he will have secured something by then but it is only teaching vacancy which are advertised this early in the year. he is a health and safety manager so he would also get a package, includng housing allowance, again free school places, flights, medical, etc... We have been told by someone that you cannot have '2 packages' at the same time and that the man's package would always override the woman's package, although I cannot find any info to support this?? It seems unfair, as it would be our plan to put together the housing allowances to get better accommodation and also ue one of the child places in my husband's package for our 3rd child as my school only offers 2 free. Any info on this would be greatly appreciated.

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 09, 2014:

Musaffah is in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi but not in the main city. It is maybe 10 kilometres out and is mainly a large industrial complex. If accommodation is provided you can certainly save money on 30K, unless you are paying for private education for children/students which is expensive. Fuel is cheap. Energy is pretty cheap and may be included in your accommodation - worth checking. You can eat cheaply if you cook for yourself or use street restaurants and cafes. Hotel restaurants and bars can be very expensive, however.

caprishake1701 on January 08, 2014:

Dear Paraglider, sorry to bother you again

The exact location of my future work place is Musaffah. I want to know, is it same as Abu Dhabi? or is some peripheral area? And my actual intention of working in Gulf is to save money. If they provide me with accommodation, wouldn't I be able to save some say 2ok bucks or something like that

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 08, 2014:

Caprishake - A married employee (in a professional job like yours) can sponsor their spouse. As sponsor, you take legal responsibility for your wife's activities in Abu Dhabi (which should be no problem). As a sponsored spouse, she will be allowed to seek work, if she wants to. You can live fairly comfortably but not extravagantly on 30K. Abu Dhabi is fairly relaxed (i.e. not a strict Sharia state) and there are plenty of facilities for recreation. Late or withheld payment is a problem throughout the region, but I would expect a hospital to be pretty safe in that respect. As to overtime, usually no, it is not forced. In fact, public companies can get into trouble for breach of the labour laws if they take advantage. Hope you enjoy your appointment!

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 08, 2014:

Lary & Nabir - I have known people gain entry and employment in Ras al Kaimah and Qatar who have had criminal convictions previously in Dubai, but as I'm sure you know, every case is unique. In both your cases I think you's be better applying to UAE or Qatar than back to Saudi though.

nabir on January 07, 2014:

Dear sir,

i have a theft/criminal case in KSA and been jailed for five days.Im been released because of some agreement with my company that i will pay my own ticket and salary deduction. They give me exit visa and go home. Can i still work in saudi and GCC countries? ( they take fingerprint in police )

lary on January 07, 2014:

i have a police record in ksa, that one also in record in all gcc countries? because i have also job offer in middle east.

caprishake1701 on January 06, 2014:


I have recently been offered a job as doctor in one of the hospital of Abu Dhabi. I want to know

1. Because my wife is still doing her course in India, she would not be able to accompany me. The company told me that I will have to sponsor her visa once she is done with her course and wants to come with me. What does this mean?

2. I have been offered a salary of 30000 AEDs plus accommodation. Is it a good offer?

3. How is the life style of Abu Dhabi?

4. Is there a problem is payments also?

5. Do they force you to do overtime like they do in India?

Thanks a lot for your reply

Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 05, 2014:

Noel - As you are not married, your girlfriend will not be given married accommodation and also will not be able to sponsor you. You can visit, on a visitor's visa (with a UK passport this is a stamp on your passport on entry, at no cost) but this does not allow you to work. If you find work over there, you would then have to leave the country before your new employer could arrange a business visa for you. Living together unmarried is against the law but not always enforced. Some hotels ask to see marriage licences and many accommodation blocks have quite strict security and a no visitors policy. Sorry that is not great news!

Klogne - most of the bigger hotels in Qatar have residence blocks for employees, (male and female apart of course). Generally, only senior staff are allowed to bring their families. I know quite a few hotel workers here and most are OK about their accommodation standard, though there are restrictions too, like late evening curfews and strict visitor rules.

Nadia - hard to say, as I don't know what field you want. Mobil has a long relationship with Qatar and there are also French hotel chains, e.g. Sofitel/Mercure and catering firms like Fauchons.

nadia69 on January 05, 2014:

hello i am Nadia i live in France and i don't speak English very well but my husband lives in Qatar and I'm looking to work in Qatar .

Do you know a French companies recruiting in Qatar

I would like to apologize in advance for my very bad English

Thank you for your reply

klogne on January 05, 2014:

hello i am a zimbabwean gentleman who has been offered a career opportunity with a Qatari hotel,the package seems good but i dont know about the living conditions these people are offering.

Noel on January 04, 2014:

This is a good forum, wonder if you can help me, my girlfriend and I are both Scottish and 25 and she has been offered a post in abu dabhi and Dubai as a primary school teacher. We are not married and I don't have any real skill (I worked in a dispatch call centre for the last 6 years) and I have worked in sales. Would I have a problem finding work and would we be ok of we're not married??

Any help is much appreciated


Dave McClure (author) from Worcester, UK on January 04, 2014:

Hi Nizar - I think they mainly check for criminal record, for connection with proscribed organisations and for previous travel irregularities such as overstaying a visa or disappearing 'under the radar' in a foreign country. Usually it's a formality, but it just takes time. There's nothing you can do to speed the process yourself. Any attempt would probably be counter-productive.

Ranjan - Ramadan and the Eids are a full six months away. July, this year.

Ranjan raja on January 04, 2014:

I think you will have to sit it out till January. We have Ramadan and two Eids in the pipeline. Nothing is going to happen quickly!

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