Tips on Saving Money When Living in Dubai and avoid leaving Dubai even more broke than when you arrived – Expats living and working in Dubai, it seems, prefer life in the fast and expensive lane and despite the salaries and expenses packages that lured them to this 21st century metropolis, they all too frequently find themselves, like Micawber, spending twenty shillings and sixpence for every pound they earn.
Result: misery! So how can one avoid the overspending traps, have a good time and leave with a healthy bank balance and saving goals achieved? Read on, for a few tips that will help you save money and still enjoy life when you move to Dubai.
Budget – and then stick to it!
Make a weekly or monthly budget, and don’t allow the numerous temptations that Dubai will offer cause you to lose sight of your long term goals. Remember that between 25-30% of your monthly income is likely to be soaked up by fixed expenses like rent, and utility bills.
Add car loans and depending on how extravagant you have been, these fixed expenses as part of your monthly budget could easily exceed 50% of your income. Don’t fixate on an actual sum that you want to save; rather focus on the percentage of your monthly income that you squirrel away. What could it be: 25% or maybe 30%? I know working couples who manage to save in excess of 50% of their combined monthly incomes, yet they still have nice cars and don’t have any trouble going out toquite expensive restaurants once or twice a month.
Of course, 50% might be a bit excessive in your first years, when you have those initial start-up costs like cars, furniture and appliances to amortize, but if you plan to stay a few years, once these are paid off, you can easily increase the percentage of savings upwards.
How’s this for starters then: 50% for fixed costs, as exemplified above; 20% for regular living costs, like your weekly grocery bill (more on this later), 10% for discretionary spending, including outings, dinners etc and 20% set aside for savings.