I had a good life there, 4 years in Dubai and another 4 years in Abu Dhabi. I experienced a lot of beautiful things UAE could offer for an ex-pat like me.
UAE is one of the safest countries on Earth, Abu Dhabi being no.1 in the list for many years. You can walk around the city in the middle of the night without anyone bothering you. When you lose your wallet or cellphone on the bus and taxi, expect it to be returned to you within 24 hrs.
Abu Dhabi was also named as one of the most family-friendly cities. Many parks, beaches and restaurants are open 24/7. And, there are a lot of communities you can join. I was a member of SFC or Singles for Christ when I was in Dubai and they’re like a second family to me already. I gained a lot of friends in that community in addition to my friends at the flat where I am staying, at work, and in some gathering that I went to.
Medical insurance and zero-income tax
Medical insurance in the UAE is also great especially in Abu Dhabi. I had given birth to my daughter with a little expense. From my bi-monthly check-ups, ultrasounds, to my CS operation, almost everything was covered with insurance. Take note, they are not deducted in your salary. The companies are the ones paying for the insurance, visa, and other employee expenses. And yes, there is no income-tax in the UAE yet. So, you can get the whole amount stated in your contract every paycheck.
Well, who doesn’t know that the UAE has a lot of stunning attractions? From the gorgeous man-made islands of Dubai to the tallest tower, Burj Khalifa, you can start to picture a pretty perfect place.
There’s a lot to love about UAE, right? So, why did I leave for good?
There’s no place like home.
Despite all the good things I’ve experienced in the UAE, I realized that I am not completely happy living in a beautiful place without my family beside me especially when I had my daughter. There are times when I couldn’t sleep at night just thinking about her. Is she doing alright? Is she being taken care of? Does she miss us, her parents, as we do? These are all the things that come in my mind every night.
My husband and I left her when she was only 3 months old. I thought it would be okay and easy because we have the internet but unfortunately, it was the year when the UAE blocked Skype and messenger video calls so we only got to see her in photos and uploaded videos. She was growing fast and learning many things that I thought to myself, I should be by her side when she goes to school. I should be the one taking care of her, preparing her things for school, and guiding her in her homework and stuff.
Then came 2 years, my work in Abu Dhabi has ended and my husband resigned as well. We have decided to go home for good. But of course, we planned everything before going home. While still abroad, I started applying online for jobs in the Philippines (which luckily, I received an invitation for interview and have worked for a couple of months). I also started reading articles about online jobs that I happened to come across the Fhmoms page. I watched webinars and I registered to many job sites including onlinejobs.ph and Upwork. I became so fascinated about online jobs that I told myself, I am going to attend a training on General Virtual Assistance when I arrived in the Philippines. It somehow gives me hope that leaving my work abroad is not regrettable at all. I could find a job in the Philippines where I could be near my family.
Now, it’s been 4 months since we leave UAE. I got an online tutorial job which is very timely since community lockdowns were ongoing and I got to do it at home. I also fulfilled my plan of enrolling in the GVA Training.
I don’t know what the future holds but one thing is for sure, there’s no amount of money or success can take the place of time spent with your family.
Author: Lyn Ann Ramos