Although not without it's challenges, moving abroad to work offers so many benefits. But what about the kids, is it really great for them? Well, according to those surveyed for the Expat Explorer Survey, one of the leading ex-pat surveys conducted annually by Mori for HSBC, two in five expat parents note that their children are more well-rounded and confident, and nearly half say their little ones have a wider, more diverse circle of friends.
In the Expat Explorer Survey, 69% of expat parents said openness to new experiences and cultures was a benefit of living abroad for kids. They learn to think outside of the box, become more flexible, and take more initiative. For all of these reasons, expat children tend to stand apart from their peers and are prime candidates for leadership in our communities and society.
So the benefits to kids living abroad are clear, but what is life like in Dubai when raising a family?
Well clearly the high salaries and tax-free benefits are often the factors that attract people to work in Dubai. However, for those that are raising a family, Dubai certainly is a safe place to live and of course it’s warm and sunny and there’s the beach. Activities readily available can suit every interest and budget and its geographical location allows for easy access to both Europe and Asia, so many of Dubai’s expat children have travelled extensively by the time they reach 18.
Education is as always a priority for those with children and the standard of international education in Dubai is exceptional as is the level of choice. However, it must be noted expensive as expats can only enrol their kids in private international schools, although the international nature of the schools develops enhanced language and communication capabilities.
The weather can also have its negatives as during the summer months the heat is so hot it does prevent kids from playing outside. The warmer winters however, really make up for hotter summers.
There have always been those who question children of ex-pats, believing that they grow up in a sheltered and often privileged bubble. Dubai can provide this safe environment if you see this as a blessing and for older kids Dubai is strict. Children soon learn through, school, parents and their peers that small consequences can lead to serious punishment, so parents can find that children get a real sense of the ‘real world’ in Dubai.
There has certainly been a rapid emergence of Dubai as an exciting place to live and work and the appeal does not seem to be diminishing. Overall, Dubai can offer so much for you and your family and as a nation they continue to support the increase in the number of international citizens arriving each week. There is a great deal of investment going into the development of services, facilities and amenities specifically for expatriates.