The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has a thriving expat community to help you feel at home, as well as a subtropical climate and tax-free salaries. If you’re thinking of working in the UAE take a look at some of your options

Made up of seven emirates – Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Sharjah, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah and Umm Al Quwain – the UAE’s relentless growth over recent years has made working there look impressive on any CV.

Rich in cultural heritage it’s a place where tradition meets modernity. English is the main language of business and around 85% of the population comes from abroad so you’ll have no trouble fitting in.

Opportunities exist all over this culturally-diverse country, but most jobs in the UAE are found in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. The cost of living is fairly expensive, especially in these two cities, but you get your money’s worth as the standard of living is world class.

Living and working in the Gulf region you’ll be able to explore Islamic culture but to avoid getting in trouble with the law you’ll need to respect local laws and customs. There can be severe penalties for breaking these. For example, there is a zero tolerance policy towards drugs and drink driving. Relationships outside of marriage are illegal as is same sex marriage. You’ll need a special licence to consume alcohol and women should dress modestly when out in public. Also be aware that swearing in public and public displays of affection are arrestable offences.

On your days off you’ll be able to enjoy red-hot weather in summer and warm days in winter. You can visit idyllic sandy beaches and cosmopolitan landmarks such as the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the tallest building in the world and the Dubai Mall.

Jobs in the UAE

An oil-rich country, the UAE has had to deal with fluctuating oil prices and global oversupply but on the whole, the economy is strong and has seen rapid growth in recent years.

Major industries in the UAE include:

  • aluminium
  • boat building and ship repair
  • construction
  • fishing
  • handicrafts and textiles
  • petroleum and petrochemicals.

Some of the best major companies to work for include:

  • AstraZeneca Gulf (pharmaceutical)
  • Apparel Group (retail)
  • DHL (logistics)
  • FedEx Express (logistics)
  • Hilton Worldwide (hospitality)
  • Marriott (hospitality)
  • Microsoft Gulf
  • Omnicom Media Group MENA
  • Splash (fashion)
  • THE One (retail)
  • Weber Shandwick (communications).

To learn more about the different emirates of the UAE