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Living in Dubai: A Glimpse into the City of Dreams

DNBC Team DNBC Team

Jun 07, 2023

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If you are planning on living in Dubai, you might be wondering how much it will cost you to live comfortably in this cosmopolitan city. 

Dubai, the glittering gem of the United Arab Emirates, is a vibrant and cosmopolitan city that offers a unique lifestyle and unparalleled opportunities. Dubai is known for its high standard of living, but also for its wide range of options for different budgets and lifestyles. 

It’s time to delve into the various aspects of living in Dubai, including the cost of living and monthly expenses and how to optimize your expenses.

The cost of living in dubai for single person

We will break down the average monthly cost of living in Dubai for a single person, based on various categories such as housing, groceries, utilities, transportation, healthcare and entertainment.

Housing

Dubai has many neighborhoods that cater to different preferences and needs, from upscale waterfront areas like Dubai Marina and Jumeirah Beach Residence, to more affordable and suburban communities like Dubai Silicon Oasis and Mirdif.

The average monthly rent for a studio apartment in Dubai is 3,375 AED ($919), while a one-bedroom apartment costs 4,875 AED ($1,327) on average. Of course, these prices can vary significantly depending on the area and the quality of the property.

Groceries

Dubai has many supermarkets that offer a variety of products from local and international brands. You can find everything from fresh fruits and vegetables, to meat and dairy products, to snacks and beverages, to household items and toiletries.

The cost of groceries in Dubai will depend largely on your food preferences and habits. If you prefer to buy organic or imported products, or eat out frequently, you can expect a higher grocery bill than if you opt for local or generic brands, or cook at home more often.

The average monthly cost of groceries for a single person in Dubai is 1,000 AED ($272), based on a standard basket of items. However, this amount can vary depending on your personal choices and consumption.

Utilities

They include electricity, water, gas, internet, phone and TV services. The cost of utilities in Dubai will depend on the size and type of your property, as well as your usage and consumption patterns.

The monthly cost of utilities for a single person living in a studio apartment in Dubai is about 500 AED ($136), while for a one-bedroom apartment it is 750 AED ($204). 

These amounts include electricity, water, cooling (which is essential during the hot summer months), internet (60 Mbps or more), phone (unlimited minutes) and TV (basic package).

Transportation

Dubai has a modern and efficient public transportation system that consists of metro, tram, bus, taxi and water taxi services. You can use a prepaid card called Nol Card to pay for your fares on public transport modes.

It can cost 250 AED ($68) for a single person, based on using the metro or bus twice per day for five days per week. However, this amount can vary depending on your travel frequency and distance.

If you prefer to drive your own car in Dubai, you will need to factor in the cost of fuel, parking, tolls, insurance and maintenance. According to Numbeo, the average price of gasoline in Dubai is 2.15 AED ($0.59) per liter as of June 2023. 

The average monthly cost of parking in Dubai is 300 AED ($82), while the average monthly cost of tolls (Salik) is 100 AED ($27). The average annual cost of car insurance in Dubai is 3,000 AED ($817), while the average annual cost of car maintenance is 2,000 AED ($545).

Healthcare

The cost of healthcare depends on your health condition, insurance coverage and medical needs. You can find a range of public and private healthcare facilities in Dubai that offer quality services at different costs. 

It can cost around 200 AED ($54) on healthcare, but this can vary depending on your health insurance plan and the type and frequency of your medical visits. 

In general, the cost of living in Dubai for a single person can vary depending on many factors, such as location, lifestyle and personal preferences. 

Living in Dubai: A Glimpse into the City of Dreams

Living in Dubai: A Glimpse into the City of Dreams

How to optimize the monthly cost of living in Dubai?

Living in Dubai can also be expensive, depending on your choices and preferences. However, you can apply some tips on how to optimize your monthly cost of living in Dubai and enjoy the best of what this city has to offer.

Renting an apartment or a villa in Dubai can take up a large portion of your income, especially if you choose to live in prime areas such as Dubai Marina, Downtown Dubai or Palm Jumeirah. However, there are also many affordable options available in suburban communities such as Dubai Silicon Oasis, Arjan, Reem and Mirdif. 

These areas offer spacious and modern accommodation at lower prices, as well as amenities such as schools, supermarkets, parks and public transport. You can also save money by sharing an apartment with a roommate or opting for a smaller unit.

Dubai has a wide range of supermarkets that cater to different tastes and budgets. You can find local and international products, as well as organic and specialty items. However, if you want to optimize your grocery bill, you should avoid buying imported or premium products that are more expensive than local or generic ones. 

For example, you can save money by buying local fruits and vegetables instead of imported ones, or by choosing chicken or fish over beef or lamb. You can also shop at cheaper supermarkets such as Carrefour, Lulu Hypermarket or Union Cooperative, or look for discounts and promotions.

Generally, utilities are more expensive during the summer months when the temperature rises and the demand for cooling increases. To reduce your utility bills, you should use energy-efficient appliances, switch off lights and devices when not in use, adjust your thermostat settings and limit your water consumption.

If you own a car, you need to pay for fuel, maintenance, insurance and parking fees. Fuel prices in Dubai are relatively low compared to other countries, but they vary depending on the global oil market. Parking fees depend on the area and duration of parking, but they can be avoided by using public parking spaces or free parking zones. 

Alternatively, you can use public transport such as metro, bus, tram or taxi, which are convenient and affordable ways to get around the city.

Healthcare costs can be high if you do not have health insurance or if you need specialized treatment or medication. Therefore, it is advisable to get health insurance that covers your medical needs and expenses. 

You can also save money by choosing generic drugs over branded ones, or by visiting clinics or hospitals that offer discounts or free services.

Living in Dubai provides a unique blend of luxury, cultural diversity, and abundant opportunities. However, it's crucial to plan your finances carefully and consider the cost of living to ensure a comfortable lifestyle that aligns with your budget and priorities. With proper budgeting and financial management, Dubai can be a remarkable city for your living.

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Note: The content in this article is for general informative purposes only. You should conduct your own research or ask for specialist advice before making any financial decisions. All information in this article is current as of the date of publication, and DNBC Financial Group reserves the right to modify, add, or remove any information. We don’t provide any express or implied representations, warranties, or guarantees regarding the accuracy, completeness, or currency of the content within this publication.