Are you a single person planning to move to Dubai? Wondering how much money would be enough to live a comfortable life in the city? You’re certainly in the right place!
Most folks are offered a salary package before moving to Dubai but have no clue about the cost of living involved here. In this article, we aim to break down the expenses of living in the city, especially for a single person, so that you can get a better idea of if your wages will suffice!
Before we proceed, a fair warning, like anywhere in the world, the cost of living will greatly depend on the lifestyle you choose to keep. However, we’ll try to keep things as objective as possible.
If you don’t want to read the whole blog, here is the bottom line; a salary of AED 10,000 - 15,000 (USD 2,700 - 4,000) a month is considered pretty decent with the potential to save a good amount, while a salary of AED 15,000 - 20,000 (USD 4,000 - 5,400) per month and more is considered very attractive.
As a single person moving out here for work, it is unlikely you’ll be purchasing a property while in Dubai. This means you’ll be paying rent for accommodation, which is likely to be your biggest expense per month.
Prices for a one-bedroom apartment in the city vary vastly from AED 30,000 - 75,000 (USD 8,100 - 20,400) per year, depending upon the area. In other words, you can expect to pay between AED 2,500 - 6,000 (USD 680 - 1,600) or more in rent per month.
If you want to live in a better area but at a more affordable price, you can always choose to share an apartment with someone to bring down costs. You’ll find rooms for rent on websites like Dubbizle.
Beyond your rent, you can also expect to have a recurring cost in the form of utilities. When it comes to electricity, you should be looking at AED 500-750 (USD 130 - 200) a month on average for a one-bedroom apartment. Since Dubai is hot for the better part of the year, your bill will be higher in the summer months.
However, some buildings offer a ‘chiller-free’ apartment which means you don’t have to pay for air conditioning and that can save you quite a bit of money!
When it comes to mobile data and internet plans, the bad news is that Dubai is one of the most expensive places in the world for the same. A mobile data plan with calling should cost you anywhere between AED 200-250 (USD 55 - 70) a month, while a home internet plan will set you back AED 400-600 depending on your package.
In total, your utility cost will come up to AED 1100-1500 (USD 300 - 400) a month. Of course, if you choose to live with a roommate, some of the costs will be shared.
When it comes to groceries, the cost of living in Dubai is on par or slightly cheaper than other developed cities in the world. A litre of milk costs AED 6 (USD 1.6), a loaf of bread costs AED 5(USD 1.4), and a dozen eggs will set you back AED 10 (USD 2.7).
If you choose to cook at home and not eat out very often, you will end up saving a fair bit of money since a meal at a regular eating-out place can cost AED 25-30(USD 6.8 - 8.2) for a single person or AED 1500 (USD 408) per month for 2 meals a day.
All said and done, the cost of groceries for a single person month should not exceed AED 1000 (USD 270), and is more likely to be AED 750 (USD 200).
It’s always a wise choice to live close to where you work and Dubai is no different. After all, rush hour traffic is a reality!
However, regardless of where you live, most people opt to own their own vehicle in Dubai since taxis are exorbitantly expensive.
Due to rising petrol prices, you can expect to pay anywhere between AED 500 - 1000 (USD 135 - 270) per month in petrol costs per month depending on what your drive and how often. Add in another AED 500 (USD 135) per month for car insurance and maintenance.
Your other option is public transport while using Dubai’s Metro and Bus routes. A monthly pass for the same costs AED 350 (USD 95) per month.
Other miscellaneous costs while you’re in Dubai can include a gym membership if you like to keep in shape, which is priced at around AED 200 - 250 (USD 55 - 70) a month. Or you could live in a full facility building with a gym and save up on this cost.
A house help who visits 2-3 times a week to clean your home should cost you around AED 600 (USD 160) a month.
And finally, you can set aside AED 1000-1500 (USD 270 - 400) a month for your leisure which includes eating out, cinema tickets, or pub/bar visits.
For your consideration, a meal for one at a middle-end restaurant will cost AED 50-75 (USD 14 - 20), movie tickets cost AED 40 (USD 11), and alcohol when consumed outside is expensive with a beer ranging from AED 30-50 (USD 8 - 14).
The good news is that in most cases your visa cost for living in Dubai and accompanying health insurance will be covered by your company so you don’t have to pay anything out of your pocket.
That brings us to the conclusion. As you can see the cost of living in Dubai varies greatly depending on your lifestyle and where you choose to live.
However, if you choose to live alone in an inexpensive area, don’t eat out too often, and maintain ordinary spending habits, you can live a very comfortable life with AED 5000-8000 (USD 1,360 - 2,180) per month including rent. This makes a salary of anything between AED 15,000 - 20,000 (USD 4,100 - 5,450) and above very attractive, and an AED 10,000 - 15,000 (USD 2,700 - 4,000) salary pretty good too.
This is not to say that this is the average salary in Dubai. People earn a lot less, and some folks can earn a lot more too. If you’re lucky and land a fantastic gig, your company might cover your living expenses as well.
We hope this blog post helped you make up your mind. That’s it from us at Wise Move for now. Until next time, choose wisely!
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