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15 things you’ll miss when you leave Dubai

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As an expat, when you first step off the plane at DXB Airport there are certain things that hit you straight away (mainly a blast of hot air). But many of these things will stay with you long after you’ve said goodbye to your adoptive city, and you probably won’t realise how much you’ll miss them until you’re gone.

1. Not needing to own a coat
We complain about the heat. All. The. Time. But as soon as you’re not living in year-round sunshine, having to wear six layers of clothing for three months of the year will really start to grind your gears.

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2. The delivery service
We have seen PlusPoint staff step into the lift with a single onion. You can get anything you like delivered here. Costa coffee, the latest iPhone, a DVD, or even an emergency packet of chewing gum.

3. The sense of community
People who don’t know Dubai well would have you believe that everyone here is materialistic and shallow. But those who stick around long enough know that people will go above and beyond to help each other, however small the problem. Everyone remembers how it felt to move away from home, far from friends and family, so they make a real effort to ensure the transition is as easy as possible.

4. The toilets
Have you ever seen nicer toilets in your life? When we first arrived, we’d make a point of going to the loo in every bar and restaurant. If you haven’t been to At.mosphere yet, you should go just to visit the toilet. Seriously.

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5. The gas price
When you go (almost) anywhere else in the world you realise that gas is expensive – if someone asks you to pick them up from the airport, you feel like asking them for some fuel money. In Dubai, you go on road trips any time you fancy without a second thought.

6. The accessibility of entertainment
Is there a major city in the world where it’s easier to get tickets for gigs and events? World-class acts, musical greats, famous DJs and internationally-acclaimed shows are rarely sold out straight away.

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7. Relatively short commutes
Let’s be honest – if you lived in London, New York, Delhi, Cape Town, Sydney, Cairo, Paris… would you be able to get to work within 10 or 15 minutes? We’re guessing not.

8. Ski Dubai
Year-round snow on the world’s largest indoor ski slope is something that you will certainly miss. Sure, it’s not the Three Valley’s, but it’s pretty amazing to have such an impressive slope on your doorstep.

9. Being chill about supercars
You get so used to seeing supercars when you live in Dubai that you sort of get numb to it. “Oh, so you’ve got a Bugatti? Unless it’s purple leopard print and covered in glitter, I’m not even gonna look.”

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10. Feeling safe
We all have that friend who has never locked their door. While we don’t recommend that you start leaving yours open, it’s definitely nice to live in a big city where you don’t feel the need to be on edge all the time.

11. Ravi’s
Don’t leave Dubai without visiting Ravi’s. Don’t you dare. It’s a Dubai institution for a reason. The curries are so cheap that you almost feel like there’s been a mistake on the bill. And they’re delicious.

12. Tax-free salary
There’s nothing more to say about this. We all know it’s great.

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13. It’s acceptable to start partying at 12pm
Imagine getting dressed up for a night out in the morning anywhere else in the world – your friends and family would probably stage an intervention. But it’s all okay because, BRUNCH!

14. The records
Dubai has broken so many records that, after a while, you get used to being surrounded by the “best” and the “biggest”. It’s only when you leave that you truly appreciate how special it is.

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15. The positivity
Dubai is filled with a can-do attitude that’s infectious. From the leaders who aren’t afraid to push boundaries and explore new technology, to the expats from all over the world who have come here in order to further their careers or provide for their families. This is a city where dreams really can come true.

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