Rising Living Costs in the UAE

The UAE is becoming a hub for international communities and people from all around the globe to come together. On top of being known for its numerous tourist attractions, it is also held in high regard for the employment opportunities and residential facilities on offer. However, one should be mindful that the UAE is a very expensive place to live in and cannot be afforded by everyone.

Over the years, people have been attracted to this destination by the law which doesn’t require them to pay any taxes per say, even though the accumulated charges of essential services are enough to take a huge chunk out of your salary. These include Salik, otherwise known as road tax; monthly housing fee, which is 5% of the monthly rental value; DEWA bills, which include charges for water and electricity; charges of chillers, transportation, TV, internet, rental fees on properties, traffic fines, and alcohol. Thus, it is safe to say that a number of things that people find easily accessible in their home countries are highly taxed in Dubai.

There has been a sudden imbalance in the earning and essential expenditure level of people, especially among expatriates. As a result, many people have resolved to send their families back home.

Increased Educational Expenses

The families living in UAE find it difficult to make ends meet due to the high educational expenses in the country. Except a few schools, a majority of quality education providing schools charge an average of AED 20,000 as annual fees. For families that have 3 or more children of school-going age, bearing such high expenses is nothing less than a challenge.

People who wish to admit their children in nurseries in the UAE have more than just the fee to consider. So, parents are forced to pay a small fortune ever since their child is of a young age in the hope to provide them with quality education. To add to this misery, the quality of education provided is as poor as the training given to the staff to deliver it and manage children.


Most of the salaried-class people living in Dubai have rented residences. This means that renting expenses can range between AED 10,000-20,000. These are huge expenses and that too for something that is essential for survival. As a result, people have no option but to manage the rental charges and have little money to put away for savings or to send back home as many expatriates are expected to do.  

As a matter of fact, earlier this year, an additional 3% municipality fee was introduced on rental homes of expatriates in Abu Dhabi and authorities have been directed to collect this amount along with the electricity and water bill. The average amount expected for a standard 2-bedroom apartment is AED 5,000. A whole new table of fees for Tautheeq and registration of rental contracts in Abu Dhabi has also been introduced which includes a 4% increment in hotel stay prices too.

People living in UAE also have to pay high costs for using healthcare facilities which are just another expense to the already long list of them. With no substantial increase in salaries, so many additional expenses have got a lot of migrants and expatriates worried.