why you (perhaps) shouldn’t teach in Dubai.
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why you (perhaps) shouldn’t teach in Dubai.


If you’re thinking of moving to Dubai to work, to live then think again this is my personal experience of living in Dubai and before I go ahead and tell you about my personal experience of working here let me just say this is my personal experience i’m not going to go into details about my job my work place, who I work for etc. etc. cause that would be pointless and you’re not interested anyway but what I will share with you, is my own personal experience of living here and working here just in the early days of arriving Now firstly, a bit about my story I have lived in Kuwait most of you know that already I’ve lived in Jordan, i’ve visited various parts of the Middle East I’ve also visited Oman, Dubai, Abu Dhabi Bahrain, i’ve visited a few countries in the Middles East… Morocco and I feel like I should have a fairly good understanding of the way things are done here and I know the culture is different now i’m not saying you shouldn’t move to Dubai and live i’m not saying that, i’m saying before you come here do some research and know what’s expected know what’s going to be expected of you and know what to expect Now the main reasons why you should not move to Dubai, okay it’s very… very frustrating and i’m recording this video today partly just because I need to I feel the need to share it with you with anyone who is thinking of moving here to live Now, where I’m from, i’m used to being told something and then i’m used to that being followed through and that actually happening now, if you’ve ever lived in the Middle East you’ll understand that… things aren’t quite like that okay, now before everyone complains and writes nasty things in the comments and… ‘oh we’re not like that blah blah blah… don’t talk bad about us’ and everything like that it’s… i’m not saying it’s a good or a bad thing it’s just the culture here is very laid back, it’s very relaxed okay, if somebody says something to you ‘you will be doing this job in this place’ that might change i wouldn’t say it probably will, but it could do and there’d be very little that you could or would say about it they might say you’ll get paid next week and then you won’t they might say then you”ll get paid again next week, and then you won’t the attitude can be very good or very poor of people you deal with now… i’m a pretty positive guy, I don’t mind uncertainty and I kind of embrace the uncertainty of things and that’s part of the excitement when moving somewhere new moving to a new country, a new location, a new job but if you’re someone who likes to know what to expect and what’s going to happen and when then living in Dubai probably isn’t for you probably, again this is very general, i’m not going to go into specific details about the jobs some will be totally, you know, kind of rigid and structured and they’ll give you exactly what they say and that’s great but, if you’re someone who likes to know exactly what’s going to happen when and when you’ll get this and what you’ll be doing and who you’ll be doing it with and… all these kinds of things then just think very carefully before you actually submit that application or accept that job here Now, i’ve talked a lot about the negatives of Dubai and I think it’s only fair you know, it’s… 2017/2018 and this is just my personal experience of the country I think it’s only fair that you have some idea of what to expect before you make that big decision to come and live somewhere new Good things about Dubai okay, of course it’s not bad, it’s not all bad majority of the population living in the UAE are immigrants like me expats, immigrants, you can argue about that in the comments as well an immigrant is someone who moves permanently to start a new life and settle, maybe with thier family as well an expat is just somebody who goes there temporarily to work and then probably goes back to their home country again so that’s me, that’s most people here so… there are lots of good positive things about living here of course, otherwise… I don’t know, 8/10 million people wouldn’t have come to Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Ras Al Khaimah all those other places to live the support is generally good the money’s good at the moment it’s still just about tax free it’s a nice place to live, it’s comfortable they have good services, they look after you the transport’s good there are plenty of taxis, i’s very easy to get around there’re loads of shops, you’re never too far from somewhere where you can go and buy things this is in… i’m talking about Dubai mostly here it is, overall… it’s a good place to work and… all these negatives which I mentioned previously in my opninion are outweighed by the positives sure they are, otherwise i’d be on a flight somewhere else right now but just be aware things might not turn out exactly as you expected when you make that trip that’s all i’m saying Okay, I hope you… I hope I haven’t offended anyone or upset anyone or upset any countries like I did with my Kuwait video a couple of years ago when I… share this with you and I’d just like to reiterate these are just my experiences, just my thoughts, my feelings… right now and it’s all true… you really will experience varying levels of support, of help from your… the people you work with the only way to really know if you’ll like it here in Dubai is to come here, visit it, and see it for yourself if you don’t like heat, if you’re from Norway or Scandinavia or Missouri or Wisconsin or Canada or the North Pole or the South Pole let’s not forget the South Pole, where the penguins apparently live you might struggle with the heat i’ve adapted pretty quickly, i’ve been here a few weeks and already, anything below about 35°C starts to feel a little bit cold and that’s actually serious i get a bit chilly if the temperature drops but you adapt very quickly if you hate the heat and you know you hate the heat and you sweat a lot maybe you’ll struggle okay, i’m going to leave it there normally I make Arabic lessons on Youtube, you can watch Arabic lessons here and you can watch some other videos I made here you can subscribe there, but for now enjoy your evening, your morning, your day whatever you’re doing i’m Arabic Mike see you next time, thank you

About James Carlton

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100 thoughts on “why you (perhaps) shouldn’t teach in Dubai.

  1. I think there is positive and negative in every country. I live in the UK and I can tell you lots of negatives about the UK hahahaha. I am arab and raised between Dubai and London and seen both worlds. There is good and bad in both cities as well as countries. BTW Dubai and Abu Dhabi is part of the UAE…. not a country alone. hahaha. Its nice seeing everyones input in their exprience.

  2. Hello how are you? I am thinking about moving to UAE, I would like to know if it is possible to land there and start the job search by handing over CVs or do I need to request a work permit before? I need to mention as well that I am a Muslim convert since three years, how are Muslim converts considered by the emirati society. Thanks in advanced for your advises

  3. Why did you make this video? You have said practically nothing negative about Dubai. If you have said almost nothing negative about Dubai, then why are you there?

  4. I’m Arab and I’ve never been to a foreign country in my life but I really understand that like I get so freaking frustrated dealing with people in here and tbh “laid back” is a nice word to say they just don’t care,lazy and very poor management it’s the worst seriously

  5. 1:47 what you said there is so accurate and whoever trys to deny it, actually is probably already ashamed of it or dont like this attitude.

    for example i live in jordan and i make videos. and it is very normal to go to a hotel and they would tell you we are planning on doing 4 videos, so give up a price for 4 videos and then after finishing 1 or 2 they might just lay back and not answer again or keep telling you next week and next week over and over again and they will pay you 2 videos in the same price you gave them for 4..

    thats why in out culture everybody is sensitive when it comes to work and almost all of us are a bit aggressive when we feel we are being manipulated in a sense.

  6. i personaly think it has nothin to do with where u r as it is with who u r in this place,, ppl generaly see some sorta stranger n they b like "oh he doesnt know how things go in here n he cannot defend himself lets use him" well m arabian i moved to others countries and thats what i think

  7. The problem is that if you decide to work in the Middle East you'll be treated like a chattel, like something they own. Lying is normal there, but it is not normal where you come from. Dubai legal system is very different from the West and you can get in a great deal of trouble if you are not careful. Avoid is the best advice.

  8. you didn't say it but I have heard a lot of bad things about Dubai and how workers are treated, not my idea of a work OR holiday destination thanks

  9. I was born and raised in Emirates, travelled to different countries and now live in Spain. I totally agree with you 👌

  10. Morocco is situated in North Africa, not the Middle East haha (I'm half Moroccan, my family lives there). But great video all the same😊

  11. I completely understand that and I think this video should be used as a reflective tool for those from the Middle East. Although I have roots in the M.E. I got on a flight from the UK all the way to Australia instead. Thanks again.

  12. I just saw your video when you were just arrived Dubai and I was so happy for you ): it seems like you are not, sorry about what happens , and I hope you get a better job with real human beings .

  13. If you'd like to support my channel you can do:

    On Patreon 👉 https://www.patreon.com/arabicmike

    Or via PayPal 👉 https://www.paypal.me/arabicmike

    Your support is hugely appreciated + it enables me to make more videos.

  14. I could not agree more! I just moved to Dubai couple of months ago. And I do feel that they are way too laid back at work here compare to where I came from. But it’s both a good and bad thing. Good thing because you don’t get stressed that much. Bad because you feel unproductive and kind of hanging in a limbo most of the time not knowing what is expected of you, Etc. But I don’t regret coming here. Like what you said, the positive things outweighs the negative ones.

  15. I do understand what you are talking about .. I'm living in Qatar my entire life (almost 23 years now)
    They society is very supportive, and it is Uni amazing place to be in. However, for some jobs the uncertainty could be an actual problem.
    And regardless of the negative things .. I cannot imagine myself living anywhere else.

  16. It just seems you are venting. It's not much to do with Dubai, it's more like ppl you're working with. Remember how quickly Dubai has become a great destination for ppl around the world. Where we come from (I'm a westerner too) our countries are centuries old and yet the level of uncertainty still exists. It's more relevant to say " my experience with X in the city of Dubai". Dubai is not a person and has a population roughly the size of NYC. Otherwise it just sound like a personal vendetta to label an entire city like that, which is unfair to the city. I also think we westerners need to get off the high horse because we cannot expect to move to another country and have everything around us change to our comfort and liking. Different countries have different cultures and lifestyles that's why we travel, to learn, educate and grow ourselves in the process. As we say in america, shit happens, roll with it. Hope you feel better. Take care.

  17. I think you had a very bad experience, I would say that most of the time for anyone who wants to move out to Dubai to work or teach you will not experience this

  18. Im watching you Mike, reading comments and I dont really understand everything. You (and your followers) speak in general examples would be great. Also assume its not advicable…I'd love to move to Dubai and teach English (my qualification is English teacher) but now..I'm at a lost. Can we possibly speak? skype for ex.? I would really appreciate it, before making any decision. Regards Judit from Hungary

  19. Come to Qatar you would love it my dad teaches here and i go to the same school better then Kuwait an Dubai and Saudi been there many times

  20. Haha, I moved out of Dubai a few days before you posted this video after having spent 10 years as an expat. I'm Bulgarian, but have had family members living in the UAE since I was 6, so it's pretty much second home. I do have a warm spot in my heart for the place, but I think it's changed a lot over the years and my time there has ran it's course. Why did I leave? Uncertainty (just like you said), hardly any personal time (working 24/7 is what everyone seems to be doing…else you can't compete), no security for the future (no matter how long you stay you will never become a citizen with all the benefits that any other country would give you for having been there so long), sick of the summer all year round (I'm a fan of 4 seasons), missed nature, hard to develop genuine friendships or relationships…the list goes on. Moved back home to Bulgaria, which is not paradise obviously especially compared to Dubai, but haven't been happier. It's a real, honest life here.

  21. Yes you are right! We came to dubai Nd now going back to our home country. UAE is not worth living with family. average person does not get paid much. Renewals of each family member, car, education of child, day care etc. As 4500 is considered to be an average salary here. If wife starts then again low salary. After that strict fines, taxes. Even if you are going back still cancelation charges on each and everything lead up to 4500. They designed system as such that person that has earned in a year or 2 will be paying them instead on what he earned.

  22. This is certainly true of one company there: The HR called to set up an interview, but got the time difference wrong. Strange error for an educational institution. The manager rescheduled but never kept any of the subsequent appointments. It says on the website he graduated from Oxford and had practically the whole alphabet behind his name to indicate his credentials. Needless to say, never got there.

  23. Can I just ask whether you are a qualified primary/ Secondary school teacher, or teach English as a second language (CELTA, TEFL)?

  24. كل شخص له تجاربه الخاصه ووجهة نظره ، ربما انت واجهت مشاكل معينه في المحيط الذي عملت به ، لذلك كان لك انطباع سلبي او مغاير لما توقعته ، وعموماً كل شخص يجب ان يتوقع مثل هذه الامور حين ينتقل للعمل في بلد مغاير عن طبيعة بلده ومجتمعه وما تعود عليه ، وليس هناك ما يجبرك ان تبقى فالرحيل لمكان افضل هو فكره جيده ، دون اعطاء انطباع سئ عن طبيعة بلد لم تتلاءم معها ، وهذا من حقك ، ونحن لا نعرف ماحدث لك بالضبط ، فأنت تتحدث بطريقه عامه ودون وضوح ، فدوماً هنالك ما لا يسعدنا فالحياه دوماً هكذا فلن تجد شئ كامل ومثالي !

  25. You should’ve been a bite more specific (after all it’s your experience and opinion), i was actually very curious to know a little more, now idk if i should be afraid visiting Dubai or what

  26. I'm a local Emirati woman born and raised in Abu Dhabi with family in Dubai. I agree with the uncertainty regarding job opportunities, it happens to us locals even with our benefits. I've been promised a job two months ago and have yet to receive confirmation or a contract of some sort. schools are a mess when it comes to discipline and education, some teachers don't care if the students behave because they will get paid regardless. even Emirati women don't want to teach students, they agree that they are rude and almost impossible to handle,its very easy to get away with things with the right connections (they are trying to eliminate the use of connections as of now)and also teenagers pay off teachers for exam answers and such to graduate. some Arabs have a race superiority complex going on, they are entitled and look down among other ethnicities and races.

  27. Honestly I am very sorry to hear that..My great uncle worked and lived there for 25 years along with his whole family. He was a Pilot. His daughter (my aunt) decided to stay there even when her dad retired and left.

    I hope you never face this injustice anywhere in the World.

  28. All your videos so useful
    Plz can you answer my question

    I watch all videos because my english not very good
    Can you give me a briefly point about bad side in this coutry in your experience ??

  29. gosh everything you say in this video is a 100% correct. when you reached the payment bit i could totally relate to what's been happening to my parents since ever, and clearly, uae's only a good place for the locals or tourists, hell otherwise.

  30. انا ما ابيش أن أكون شريرة او شي لاكن اقسم بدين الله الخليج ما عندهم آحترام لي اي شخص خارج بلادهم والله برطانبا عنداهم اكثر إحترام من الخليج وانا ما اكسد الخليج كلا و انا والله احبكم بس في ناس ما يصتاتيعون التحمل.
    💖

  31. Being general doesn't help abit, but I think you worked in Dubai as an English teacher, but they didn't pay on time, or you were working with a tourist visa, or gave you a smaller salary (I am just trying to figure what happened to you)

    Worked as an Engineer, didn't have that problem of delayed salary (Engineering companies tend to be more professional), small salary yes but I knew what I was getting myself to.

    That is the problem with Dubai or any Middle Eastern country, they are more laid back than the UK. Lived in the UK, their bureaucracy is a lot smoother than the GCC including Dubai.

    The good thing about Dubai compared to the rest of the middle east, you don't need to pay bribes

  32. Baaaad ..
    Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “There are FOUR (characteristics), whoever has them is a hypocrite, and whoever has one of the four has a characteristic of hypocrisy unless he gives it up: when he speaks, he lies; when he makes a promise he breaks it; what he makes a pledge he betrays it; and when he disputes he resorts to foul language.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 2327; Muslim, 58.

  33. Mike, you know what? …It's quite funny, the fact that you make these videos either to teach some arabic or to talk about something related to it, but I follow your channel because I learn english, and I learn watching your videos, listening to you. Keep up the work mate. I know how it feels, I mean being passionate about a foreign language!
    Grettings from Nicaragua!

  34. You should come here in Iraq and see how cruel some companies are my brother has been working for years and the last 4months he hasn't received a penny but they are promising them they would pay them . what do you say about that especially these workers have families they have to feed them. Life is miserable for many here in Iraq.

  35. The basic difference between the westerners who actually get most of the prestigious jobs in The UAE is that they reject the local way of life and and the UAE mentality and want to get things their own way as if that were the case back in their home countries where they were most probably struggling to make ends meet . despite the prospects and benefits they are enjoying. On the other hand, we, the people of the rest of the world-the sensible,humble majority- just take things as thay are and do our best to get used to it the best way we can. So viewers of such videos as this one , watch them with a pinch of salt and make your own decisions yourselves by experiencing these settings yourselves.

  36. Hahahaha so true.
    I'm not upset about what you said because it's just the truth..
    You should be aware of what times u could be flexible and what times u should deny it.
    Sometimes not being flexible might hurt u more howeve u could be abused and u don't want!

  37. TRY INDIA !!! Nothing happens in time or as ' promised ' – Not to ' mention ' the ' Umpteen ' Religiois Holidays intervene w/ the Flow b4 it can ' correct itself '. However – Being from the West we are ' drawn to the Warmth n Hospitality _Laidnackness of the East !!! Diversity Rocks !!! In the ' Final Analysis ' !!!

  38. I’m from Central Asia/the Middle East and don’t think it’s a good thing to promise payment and then not deliver and it’s ok you’re calling them out for it. Tbh the attitude of gulf Arabs (not sure about Arabs in general) is not the best

  39. go live in Sousse Tunisia, you will adore it… People in Tunisia are open minded and friendly.. you can live so well there…

  40. While I am hearing you , it sounds that you're sad , it seems that something bad has happened with you. smile please . It seems also that you were crying before making this totally quite regrettable video. And after all these feelings ,you ask us to enjoy our day !! how could we enjoy while you're in bad. I am from Iraq , I learned from you to use "quite " so now you have only one choice , you have to be quite good , feel quite cheery, and draw on your face quite sunny smile.

  41. The honor culture in middle eastern countries is interesting. I took a short course about the region at my community college, and my instructor told me that it's common to promise things but not follow through. She told me that it would be considered bad for one's name if they didn't say they could or would.

    I saw a similar example in a prior video where you spoke about your experience teaching in Kuwait. You spoke about how passionate a student was during a fight. Maybe it was related to their honor or their family's honor? It seems like status and name is incredibly important because of the family-oriented culture.

  42. Let me just add something, the money is good only if you are from a European country. I speak 4 languages fluently one of them is Arabic and I wanted to work in UAE or Qatar and just because I am from Russia they offered me a very low salary. Of course I refused the job offer.

  43. Come and move to my country, you might be paid less but you'll live a depth of soulful life like nowhere else, people are nice and warm, food and lodge is cheap, you'll never regret. Trust me

  44. Being an EAL teacher I really appreciate and enjoy your beautiful English accent. Thank you for sharing

  45. I have heard of those stories, I also know that laid back culture, they really don’t care in a good way and a bad way.

    Doing business and getting money on time is really not going to happen.

  46. Thanks for sharing MikeStill. I lived in Dubai from 1993 to 2015. First a a single woman working then with my family.I I thought I would live there forever. We owned a lovely house near the desert and never wanted to leave. But the last job my husband had, was misleading and didn't pay even though he had a signed contract.
    My husband was a CFO and had worked for different companies over the years: some international and some local. Never had any problems. Until the last contract was for a "corrupt" local who signed honour the contract. We were looking for other jobs at the same time of course, but no luck there so after living on 3 years on our savings, we ended up selling my beloved house and my beloved Dubai. I guess it is like everywhere things can turn bad and there are bad people everywhere. There are international companies too that don't pay salaries (or delay them) in Dubai. It doesn't change the fact that I still love Dubai, still have foreign and local friends there and hope to go back to live again one day as I consider it my adoptive country as opposed to France, where I am from. BTW as another language teacher, love your youtube channel. Good luck to you Mike.😆

  47. my personal experience and the one of Western colleagues who are white South African is that those who make life difficult in the Middle East and particularly in UAE are Brits. Most of those who hold managerial positions in schools, for example, do not deserve their posts and would not even be considered for these roles had they been in the UK. When they get in UAE they act like dictators, torturers, they have their favorites, all the western values they would normally adhere to, disappear. This is because rather than having morals and ethos, they adapt to the society they live in: money talks louder than morals. I have seen sincere, honest, and hard-working teachers being badly treated for either no valid reason or they are not protected and defended against false allegations from lazy students, incompetent parents or even colleagues. So if you want to work in Dubai and just gather enough money to return back home then my advice is suck up to the right people in management, don't trust any of your colleagues, teacher assistants just be nicey-nicey to everyone, don't complain about anything to anyone, lie to parents about the academic performance of their kids , get bad kids on your side: don't try to discipline them for their own good or get them to work (it will backfire on you), don't worry about whether they progress or not : their government and their parents will take good care of them even if they fail . No one cares about being truthful, honest, genuine so just care about yourself and do everything to survive!

  48. I personally don’t like Arabs. What I want to know is why is it that Gulf Arabs have all this money but no manners? I work in 5* hotels around London with an agency and when I come across Arabs I dread it. They are always so rude, never say please or thank you, they don’t discipline their kids and they are so greedy too. Today for breakfast in the Marriott Hotel there was this Arab family with 4 children and the kids were running around everywhere, chucking food around and they ate every single item they could. The parents were not doing anything about it. All the French, Italian and Spanish families their children were eating and behaving very well. I don’t understand why it is Arabs have no manners, especially the ones from wealthy countries like Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi etc. Please Arabs learn some Manners and raise your children properly. There are many wealthy families in different backgrounds across the world. They have good manners as well. Finally, why are people in that country so obsessed with social media & taking pictures of them? Big Arab families sit with each other and they don’t interact with each other much. Their always on their phone. So sad.

  49. It’s not that bad I lived in emirates for 5 years and not all places are bad but because Dubai is really dense and full of many people and jobs and living is not really comfortable for many people so if you wanna live in emirates Dubai is not the best place for you to live in a quieter place will be better and Dubai will only be for visiting shopping or just entertainment people are not that bad but not all people are good as well schools are not that bad unless your luck is really tough. I hope I helped you if you want to move there thank you!😊

  50. I can tell what you were thinking and feeling while recording it. Cheers man, you helped me a lot. Love from Leeds xx

  51. Thank you so much for your video brother. I am considering a move to Dubai to work as a Special Needs teacher. Could you please give me the general attitude towards black teachers in that country?

  52. Mike:im not going to go into details about my job my work place,who i work for etc bcs that would be pointless and ur not interested anyway

    Me:shit but i really wanna know bout all that stuffs!

  53. regarding expectations that doesn´t only apply to UAE but any new place you go to. even your dream place can turn to be somehow disppointing or even better than expected. this is why it is important to manage expectations and be flexible and adaptable.

  54. managing expectations is crucial not only moving to UAE but anywhere in the world even to your dream place, can turn to be worse than expected.

  55. I just passed my celta course and was thinking of Dubai but my dad has mentioned Kuwait a lot. This is a very good video. Hope you're well mate

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