Moving from Pakistan to Dubai: A Comprehensive Guide

Last Updated on July 10, 2024 by Vadim

Relocating from Pakistan to Dubai is an exciting opportunity. Dubai’s dynamic lifestyle, luxurious amenities, and tax-free income make it a popular destination for expatriates. This guide provides all the necessary information to ensure your transition is smooth and successful.


Moving from the vibrant cities of Pakistan to the modern skyline of Dubai involves significant changes. Both regions offer unique lifestyles and opportunities. This guide will help you navigate these changes and prepare for your new life in Dubai.

Why Move to Dubai?

Dubai offers many benefits that attract people from around the world. Key reasons include:

  1. Tax-Free Income: No personal income tax allows for higher savings.
  2. Lifestyle: Experience world-class amenities, luxury shopping, and beautiful beaches.
  3. Career Opportunities: A booming hub for industries like finance, real estate, and technology.
  4. Climate: Enjoy sunny weather throughout the year, unlike Pakistan’s more varied climate.

Key Steps to Relocate from Pakistan to Dubai

Visa Requirements

  • 5-Year Green Visa: For highly skilled workers, freelancers, investors, and business partners. Requires a bachelor’s degree, a minimum salary of AED 15,000 per month, and 5 years of work experience.
  • 10-Year Golden Visa: For long-term residents such as investors, entrepreneurs, executives, and students who meet certain investment or employment criteria, such as investing AED 2 million in real estate or having an exceptional talent.
  • Other Visa Options: Work, study, and retirement visas are also available.
  • Application Process: Apply through the UAE embassy in Islamabad or via a sponsor in Dubai. Be prepared for a medical examination, including blood tests for HIV and Hepatitis.

Cost of Living

  1. Housing: Significantly more expensive than in Pakistan. Rental prices range from AED 25,000 for a studio to AED 80,000 for a 2-bedroom in popular areas.
  2. Utilities and Groceries: Higher costs compared to Pakistan, but balanced by the tax-free income. Utility costs like electricity, water, and gas average around AED 600-800 per month for a family. Groceries are 20-30% more expensive.
  3. Dining and Entertainment: Prices can be higher, but options range from affordable street food to high-end restaurants. Restaurant prices are 12% higher on average compared to Pakistan.

Cultural Adaptation

  1. Climate: Prepare for extremely hot, dry weather, especially in the summer, with temperatures exceeding 40°C.
  2. Social Norms: Dubai has a more relaxed dress code compared to Pakistan, but modest clothing is still expected in public places. Alcohol consumption is legal for non-Muslims, unlike in Pakistan.

Living in Dubai


  1. Downtown Dubai: Close to Burj Khalifa and Dubai Mall. Average rents: AED 25,000 for a studio to AED 60,000 for a 2-bedroom.
  2. Dubai Marina: Waterfront living with leisure and dining options. Average rents: AED 40,000 for a studio to AED 80,000 for a 2-bedroom.
  3. Palm Jumeirah: Luxurious villas with beachfront views. Villas can cost up to AED 150 million.
  4. Arabian Ranches: Family-friendly suburban community. Rental prices: AED 160,000 to AED 400,000 per year for villas.
  5. Jumeirah Lakes Towers (JLT): Affordable option with lakes and green spaces. Rental prices are more affordable than Jumeirah Beach Residence.


  1. International Schools: Numerous options following British, American, and IB curricula. High tuition fees; apply early as spots fill quickly.


  1. Job Market: Diverse opportunities, especially in finance, tourism, and technology. However, the job market is competitive with many expats vying for positions.
  2. Work Culture: Faster-paced with longer hours compared to Pakistan. Higher salaries but consider the higher cost of living.

Relocation Logistics

Moving Costs

  1. Shipping Belongings: Shipping household goods from Pakistan to Dubai can be complex and costly. Costs vary based on volume and shipping method, averaging around £5,900 – £6,850 for a 3-bedroom house.
  2. Finding Accommodation: Work with local real estate agents to navigate the rental or purchase process. Be prepared to pay a higher security deposit, typically 5-10% of the annual rent.

Setting Up Utilities

  1. Registering Utilities: Electricity, water, and internet must be set up under your name. Utility costs like electricity, water, and gas average around AED 600-800 per month for a family.
  2. Banking: Open a local bank account and obtain a UAE mobile number.

Legal and Administrative Matters

  1. Driver’s License: Transfer your Pakistani license or obtain a UAE one.
  2. Healthcare: Secure health insurance and understand local healthcare facilities.

Relocating Pets

Relocating pets involves specific documentation, vaccinations, and quarantine procedures. Costs depend on the animal and airline.

Climate and Environment

  1. Hot Climate: Prepare for temperatures exceeding 40°C in the summer. Adjustments are needed in terms of clothing, activities, and lifestyle.
  2. Health Precautions: Stay hydrated and take measures to avoid heat-related illnesses. Be aware of air quality issues and the spread of infectious diseases like dengue fever.

Cultural Differences

  1. Religion and Dress Code: Dubai has a more relaxed dress code compared to Pakistan, but modest clothing is still expected in public places. Alcohol consumption is legal for non-Muslims.
  2. Language: While Arabic is the official language, English is widely spoken. This might pose challenges for those not fluent in English or Arabic.
  3. Social Norms and Etiquette: Dubai has a diverse and cosmopolitan culture, but public displays of affection and certain behaviors considered acceptable in Pakistan may be frowned upon in Dubai.

Cost of Living Comparison

  1. Housing Costs: Renting a 3-bedroom apartment in Dubai’s city center averages around AED 15,200 per month, significantly higher than in major Pakistani cities where it averages around PKR 50,000-75,000 per month.
  2. Utility Costs: Utilities are more expensive in Dubai, around AED 600-800 per month for a family, compared to PKR 10,000-15,000 per month in Pakistan.
  3. Internet Costs: High-speed internet costs around AED 92.30 per month in Dubai compared to PKR 2,500-3,500 in Pakistan.

Salary Comparison

  1. Dubai: The average monthly salary in Dubai is AED 14,176 (USD $3,860) after tax.
  2. Pakistan: The average monthly salary in Pakistan is PKR 37,500 (USD $140).

Key Takeaways

  • Thorough Planning: Essential for a smooth transition. Research visa options, cost of living, and cultural differences.
  • Understand Costs: Budget for higher living expenses, especially for housing and schooling.
  • Cultural Adaptation: Respect local customs and integrate into the community.
  • Employment: Network and research the job market in your industry.
  • Healthcare: Ensure adequate health insurance and understand the healthcare system.
  • Legalities: Stay updated on visa requirements and other legal matters.

Moving from Pakistan to Dubai is a significant step that requires careful planning and adaptation. With its vibrant lifestyle, career opportunities, and sunny weather, Dubai can be a rewarding place to call home. Embrace the change, and enjoy the journey!

Further Reading

If you’re interested in learning more about relocating to or within the UAE, here are some essential articles that cover various aspects of the topic. These resources will help you navigate the complexities and make informed decisions.

  1. A Comprehensive Guide to Tawtheeq: Lease Contract Registration in Abu Dhabi
  2. Closing a Bank Account in the UAE: A Step-by-Step Guide
  3. How to Apply for a Police Clearance Certificate (PCC) in the UAE
  4. How to Relocate from Egypt to Dubai in 2024
  5. How to Relocate from Germany to Dubai in 2024
  6. How to Relocate from India to Dubai in 2024
  7. How to Relocate from the US to Dubai: A Comprehensive Guide (2024)
  8. Leaving Dubai for Good? 8 Essential Tasks to Complete Before You Go
  9. Moving from Pakistan to Dubai: A Comprehensive Guide
  10. Notarising Your Chinese Academic Degree for UAE: A Step-by-Step Guide
  11. Relocating from China to Dubai: Complete Guide for Expats
  12. Relocating from China to the UAE: Your Top 5 Questions Answered
  13. Relocating from London to Dubai: Your Ultimate Guide
  14. Relocating from Manchester to Dubai: Complete Guide for Expats
  15. Relocating from the UK to Dubai: A Comprehensive Guide for British Expats
  16. Relocating in the UAE? Here is a Detailed Guide on How to Find the Best Movers
  17. Tax Residency in the UAE
  18. Traveling with Pets: A Comprehensive Guide to Relocating Your Furry Friends Out of the UAE
  19. UAE Overstay Fines: A Simplified 6-Step Online Payment Guide
  20. Ultimate Guide to Pet Travel in UAE: Airline Rules and Tips [2024]