04 September, 2007

20 reasons against Dubai

This American lady, Kelly Barker, supposedly a UAE resident, has put together a list of 20 reasons why not to move to Dubai.
...oh yeah, she's got some good points!


faiq said...

only 20??their are many more..many reasons are related to Westerner but for ppl like me belong to Unfortunately South asia having so many problems like racism,poorly treating at Govt offices,no any rights are protected,huge difference btw salary of local & any south asian .

Anonymous said...

I take issue with 9. The men don't wear skivvies.

Robert said...

It was an interesting article, as that site is usually pitched to the wonders of "the rest of the world" and in particular why you should invest in real estate there or become a travel writer and sell ebooks. That's the first negative piece I ever saw there.

Curious said...

Oh she she even gives you a change of mind option with "How to thrive in Dubai" if u don't wanna leave as yet!

B.D. said...

It's really a case of glass half-full, half-empty. Half of what she mentions are the kinds of things that don't bother you once you get used to things. Like the PO Box thing. Sure, it's ridiculous, but who needs mail these days anyway, when you can communicate immediately online. In the States where people still enjoy the use of the old-fashioned mailbox, 90% of what they get through it is junk mail and credit card offers.

Anonymous said...

I agree with a lot of the stuff she said, but on the other hand, is she being kept here as a prisoner?? Why doesn't she just get the hell back to where she came from? I hate people who bitch over things but still remain here!

Anonymous said...


"In the States where people still enjoy the use of the old-fashioned mailbox, 90% of what they get through it is junk mail and credit card offers".

Sorry to break you daydream; Never heard of spam have u?

Brn said...


While I agree that overall the lack of door-to-door mail delivery is a not that big a problem, the lack of street addresses is a HUGE problem. When I had a fire at my house in 2006, it took well over a half hour to get the fire department, which was less than five minutes away, to get to my house because they could not find it. It was not because of a language problem either, as all of my Arab neighbors were the ones telling them how to get there. It finally took one of them to get in his car and drive out to the road to flag down the fire truck. And that was just a small fire - imagine what the consequences could have been if it had been someone having a heart attack or some other problem needing immediate medical attention. How many people die every year because of problems of getting emergency personnel to the scene quickly?

Matthew said...

She thinks that "speeding even just a couple of kilometers over will get you fined"? "Crossing the Emirates with alcohol is illegal"? "Two is the max" for duty-free bottles? She's an idiot, an absolute idiot who probably spent about two weeks living here and decided to go back home.

SevenSummits said...

Absolutely fantastic write up [which of course is only considering the Western point of view – you need to forgive her for this pragmatism, because she obviously doesn’t have an alternative]!

Point 14 really triggers my temper – so many innocent children end up as casualties, because their “so called mothers” are not responsible enough to educate themselves about taking proper care of their offsprings. {I personally would argue, that this is what happens if children are first and foremost used as an instrument to blackmail men – which Arab men would voluntarily give up his children and will instead prefer to suffer himself through an unsatisfying marriage??) Absolutely disgusting! Whenever I see one of those b**** on the mobile while driving (if you want to call it that way) and children climbing around in the car unbuckled and without special safety seats. I just feel like puking – honestly! Funny that my taxi drivers often agree with me and even seem to have a personal opinion about this – in a perfect democracy in the UAE (with everyone involved allowed to vote – local women would be banned from driving) – I am sure of that. He, He :P

Point 9 made me laugh! First of all, everyone should be tolerant about other cultures choice of outfits, but if you read it correctly, she is – obviously in absence of any serious socio-cultural knowledge – merely concerned that the color black is not the most suitable choice for a hot climate. It is not meant disrespectful, even if it sounds that way! On the other hand, real traditional Emirati men do not wear skivvies. – now what would she say if she only knew????? (A new form of freedom? What would a sociologist make out of this?)

Ever heard of the possibility that someone would like to send a real physical present to an Emirati friend? (or anyone else living in the Emirates?) Well, I tried it via DHL and only had the street address – my ignorance – because the parcel never arrived and DHL is arguing with exactly this point.

Anonymous said...


BD will probably tell you ... it could have happened even in the developed countries.

Seabee said...

Yes, and bitching about the weekends not being the same as 'back home', bags of lettuce leaves at $10 (air freighted in) when local lettuce is a dirham or two but she obviously doesn't even consider buying it.

Some of it is accurate, some is nonsense, some is just lack of understanding, such as the complaints about clothing.

A fairly typical piece written to support an opinion, as so many things are.

Alexander said...

I can't believe anyone's falling for this obvious leader into a 'buying opportunity' to obtain an alarmist $20 'report' into 'living in Dubai', particularly as it comes from such a thoughtless and superficial standpoint.

HEY! They don't got popcorn!

HEY! They don't got reyul satellite!

HEY! They don't got cinema like we got it!

HEY! They don't got GM lettuce cheap!

HEY! They don't got niggers, jus' dem Injuns an' not even reyul Injuns, but dem Injun ones frahm Injah!

HEY! They don't got labour rights like we got labour rights! Not even for Spics and other cannon fodder for Eyeraq!

HEY! They don't got stuff I unnerstan'!

HEY! They different an' that's bayud!

Spare me. This is Godawful. At least bring some sort of depth of thought or at least breadth of experience to the job of flaying the place.

You. Have. Not. Moved. To. Boston.

SevenSummits said...

“local lettuce” ?????????? Help! Let me get this straight - we are talking about the same place, correct? Dubai? In the UNITED ARAB EMIRATES?
Do you have any clue about what you are actually eating there? How and under what circumstances it is being produced? And what the “ecological footprint” of this product is? Mmmm and at the same time talking about “air freighted in”? Trust me, that you would instantly consider eating something else, if you only knew! [BTW – just a hint - stay away from the local tomatoes as well : )]

God, is it only me or has nobody yet realized that you are living in a country with some of the most severe water shortages in the world? Maybe go back to her points and reconsider point 20? Did you take a closer look, where those non-renewable fossil groundwater reserves are going into and maybe why this happens to be the case? Keywords here are: “Elites, farms, mismanagement, subsidies, etc.”

No disrespect Seabee, but you are from a country that is seriously suffering from desertification and other drylands related issues (besides having some of the best experts in the world) – you should know a lot better. I can excuse my special princess for a little ignorance, after all this is a developing country, but you should know what the heck is at stake here and of course by the time “they” will run out of water and will be left with those totally degraded soils, you will be enjoying your pension far away on hopefully one of those beautiful beaches :) back home.

Anonymous said...


You must have understood by now most ppl are either unaware/misinformed or are totaly lead by heard mentality that is nurtured by ....

They dont care about the future, perhaps if we were to take all the necessary percaution and then tomorrow we were hit by an asteroid/comet/rogue planet.. all the effort would be wasted.

But keep up your good work!

Anonymous said...

Loool@ Alexander

That made my day. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 04 September, 2007 21:02

"I hate people who bitch over things but still remain here!"

Did someone compell you to read her stuff? If it bothers you just don't read. Its a simple solution to your perosnal problem. As such hate is a -ve emotion hence can be bad for your health.

Anonymous said...

There is alot more practical resons specially financial ones that are not mentioned.A person lives all his life in it, works so hard to build it yet his sponsor can send him back to his country empty handed.there is no basic recognition or citizen rights for no expatriate.However,Dubai is still the best emirate, compared to other emirates in recognizing expatriates.

USArabGal said...

Who cares what women wear. Why is it any concern of her's what anyone wears? This is just another typical Ameircan. blah blah lady.

J. Edward Tremlett said...

Well, these matters are problematic. But you know, you either accept that it's not going to be like home and stay for what's good, or you go home. It sounds to me like this person needs to go home, if she hasn't already.

We lived in Dubai 7 years, put up with all the nonsense and crazy things we didn't agree with (or found ways around them) and left not because we were fed up, but because it was time to get back to other goals that we couldn't accomplish in Dubai. Given a chance to return, we just might.

Kelly Barker said...

I truly OBJECT TO HAVING MY NAME attached to this post. I have a published E-Book "Thriving in Dubai" which is available on line. I have called Dubai home for 5 years and found it to be one of the most inviting countries in the world and home to many people which I call friends. It is welcoming and there are many business and personal opportunities to explore. Though this post I request that the owners/authors of the UAE Community Blog who started this post make its corrections.

Kelly Barker said...

20 Reasons AGAINST Dubai was published by Tia O'Neill who is completely unrelated to the e-book author of Thriving in Dubai, Kelly Barker an American who has called Dubai home for 5 great years.

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