-These advices are specially for single ladies.
1. Book a good quality Airbnb (service apartment) with kitchen, washing machine, pool, gym etc. And the most important of all, located conveniently very close to metro station and supermarket.
I do spend on accommodation to myself relatively generously when I travel. I think it's the most important decision that will shape the experience.
If you are like me who has quite an asian tongue and into healthy eating it's just so important to have a kitchen. When you feel like cooking or making yourself some nice tea and breakfast, you can do it easily. I always search if supermarket is closed.
There is no way you can carry groceries in this heat. But then again in Dubai you can just call and they deliver! (PS: I won't recommend the one I stay in Dubai this time . The location is too far away to downtown it takes a long time on the metro to city and the expenses on taxi is big too. which can be best avoided. I choose it cause it's close to Patty and all the other friends. We all live in this posh area but it's more for the locals not tourists like me)
Even if you have friends living here, Don't stay with them (unless they are families or relatives then it's fine cause you can never break family bond-like my poor cousin Fiona who always takes me on and people don't understand why she doesn't want to kick me out every time I go back to Taiwan hahaha) Much flexible when you are on your own and staying with them will add on their inconvenience especially if you are staying longer than 3 days. It's always more important than developing good friendship than just saving some money on your end. You can always earn money but good friends and relationship in life is much more precious .
2. Save enough money before travelling to Dubai. Dubai is not cheap and if I want to come to place like this, I want to enjoy it. So save enough before taking off. You don't want to be here and constantly think about oh lets not spend on this, lets not spend on that. Dubai might be cheaper than Sydney in lots of ways but when you are travelling you will naturally put on larger expenses on experiences.
Again spending on experience is much better than spending on things.
3. Travel light
Always travel light. Makes life so much easier.
4. Pack swimwear. You will need to swim in this heat.
5. Be respectful and open minded to Islam culture and belief. You will be amazed what you see and find.
Dubai is a wonderful city. Especially for singles. I found the city that is absolutely perfect to unwind, recharge, inspire ! So safe and so vibrant .
There are really not much things that are bad here. At least not for a first time visitor like me.
1. The heat
The locals kept telling me that it's only 35 degrees now it's so nice. I was like, are you kidding me? there is no way I can walk under the sun. The heat is just excruciating. No wonder they build such big malls cause you can't go out and do much once the sun is up. I can't imagine whats like in July.
2. There is the dark side of Dubai
There are a lot of people doing it tough here. This is not the place with just rose and gold. Some Indian and lower status workers were scammed to this place as hard ship labours who live in extremely dehumanised condition and no authority has any concern towards the issue. The rapid development of Dubai has such a dark side.
Dubai has such chaotic traffic condition during working hours. Everyone drives because only the lower class people catch the bus (I tried yesterday and swear never again. It often stops in the middle of nowhere and walking a few minutes under the sun is just torture). Metro can get very crowded during peak hour too. I catch taxi a lot cause of the convenience but it does adds on the cost (and I still get a little tense when it comes to sitting in the taxi overseas). A lot of place you simply just can't get there easily without a car. Under the heat you also can't walk outside so I do think traffic is a nuisance.
4. Long working hour and stress
I used to think it will be so good to work and live in Dubai. Now after meeting so many professional people coming from around the world I know there is no work life balance here. There is no super for you to retire with. The worst thing is that when you are no longer working you will be kicked out of the country regardless how long have you been staying here. It's a place with no future aspect. Let along work life balance. We are not working or staying here so we are ok. It's good for holidays.
5. Everything is about money.
If you are rich, you will have a good life here. If you are not, you are doomed. Simple.
1. Extremely safe
I don't think I have ever felt so safe catching the taxi by myself at 1 am. This is a muslim country it has very strict law so no one dares to commit the crime easily. You can walk by yourself at night or catch the taxi and still feel extremely safe. The property manager told me that even I have my doors open no one will go in to steal things. At least in Dubai thats the case.
2. It has everything
Sometimes when I go to Europe I feel like very authentic asian food. Dubai and Abu Dhabi even has the most authentic Chinese hot pot. All the international things you can think of they will be imported here. If you have money, literally everything is possible.
3. free home delivery to everywhere of anything
I never know you can just order a soy sauce or even just 1 toilet paper they will have someone deliver to your door free of charge. You can literally stay at home and everything will be taken care of.
4. Shoppings and restaurants open till midnight or 1 am.
Dubai just never goes to sleep. It's hot during the day so people start to function after work. The city doesn't sleep.
5. All sorts of people are here
The world is such a small place if you come into Dubai. You will meet people from Syria, Saudi, Kuwait just the places you never think of possible (and peaceful). All the people I met are extremely intelligent, professional and inspiring.
6. Public toilets are so clean and always free
One of the worst thing about going to Europe is that I always have to pay for the use of public toilet and they are not always clean either. In Dubai the toilet is everywhere and always extremely clean.
7. It's not that far away from Sydney compare to Europe. 15 hours of direct flight is actually not that bad considering Sydney is so far away from everywhere. If you catch Emirate airline you might hardly have jet lag due to the flight time. And I must say that Emirate Airline is just awesome.
8. no alcohol
For a non drinker this place is paradise. No need to drink to fit in, and no drunken dudes on the streets.
There are a lot more good things about Dubai. I love this place. Shall be back again every year .
I talked to quite a lot of different people since arriving in Dubai. I just have this great interest towards people. How people live. What are the hopes and dreams and what are their worries and concerns.
Of course I have mine too. No matter how paradise Australia might be or how fortunate my work and life might be we are always bombarded with different worries and anxieties and our mind is constantly learning to work towards it.
One thing I learn from people is that no matter how good a person's profession looks to you, regardless the huge salary package or life style they live in Dubai, deep down everyone is insecure about the future and everyone is looking for a better way .
I love talking to people. You learn from them in lots of different ways.