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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

The Greek restaurant you must try in Dubai


  • Image Credit:
  • TAB_140529 FOOD GREEK three dips - tzatziki, aubergine and spicy fetadakos, food review, at Eat Greek Kouzina Photo:Arshad Ali


If you haven’t eaten the stuffed calamari at Eat Greek yet, make it the first thing you do after reading your tabloid!.
It’s a plateful of Mediterranean summer flavours, served overlooking the beach at Dubai Marina’s new The Beach complex.
The baby squid aren’t the only thing I’d recommend on the menu cooked up for me by sous chef Vlassia Anagnostou and her team, but it’s one that symbolised everything I enjoyed about this restaurant.
Forget the stodgy deep-fried calamari you’ll find in other beachside spots. At Eat Greek, baby squid (Dh40) are packed with tons of green, fragrant herbs, including the ever-so-Greek dill, as well as parsley, mint, oregano and thyme, spinach and beetroot leaves — and grilled to tender perfection, while the stuffing maintains its crispness. With its lemon oil sauce, it’s tangy, bright, fresh and light — just what you want when you’re in a floaty summer dress and sandals pulling off an Aphrodite look by the sea. “Lemon oil is like our magic juice,”

How to live as an expat in the UAE

The UAE has a well-established expatriate population, especially in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Internations has compiled the following list for Emirates 24|7 from the recommendations and advice of those experienced expats to help you make a smooth move to the UAE.

Before you move

1. Plan your finance and paper work

Everyone knows of the UAE’s generous lack of personal income tax but many people don’t realise how initial set-up costs can be. Some forethought, research on living costs, and savings in the bank, will help you more easily transition to your life in the UAE. Also, getting an early start on all the necessary paperwork for visas and other bureaucratic processes is a great way to ensure you have the relevant documents when the time comes to present them.

2. Visit the Emirates and talk to expats

You wouldn’t move somewhere unknown in your home country, so you should be even less willing to move internationally without visiting your destination first.  To get a feel for the UAE, spend a few weeks there, determine which areas you’re fond of, and talk to other expats who’ve been living there for more than a year.

3.Find an apartment

This will also help with your financial planning. Bear in mind rent is often paid in advance for the year and don’t forget to work out how far your apartment is from bus stops and Metro stations.

4.Enroll your children in a school

The international schools have long-waiting lists, so get in as early as possible.

5.Learn a bit about Shariah and cultural norms

Dressing in appropriately modest clothing is necessary in most parts of the UAE except for a few expat-populated suburbs and beaches, where you can get away with board shorts or bikini. Drinking alcohol in public is forbidden and public displays of affection between men and women are frowned upon and may land you in a conversation with a security guard or police officer. Be careful how you drive and pay your debts. Serious violations of the last two can result in prison sentences. With a little bit of consideration and respect for your new home you won’t get yourself into any trouble – most people don’t have any problems adjusting.

Making the move

6.Don't take your furniture


Given the array of locally available options, it just doesn’t make financial sense to ship yours.

7. Check delivery costs and currency

For those personal items that you must have in your new UAE home: double-check paper works and be sure of costs, delivery times, and trackability.

8. Leave your pet at home

Your beloved pet is much better off with a caring relative than making the journey to the UAE, only to be hauled back again a few months or years later. Pets are expensive to transport internationally and it’s best not to buy one in the UAE either if you’re not staying long-term. Animal shelters are home to many an abandoned rabbit, cat, and dog due to the temporary nature of expat life.

Living in the UAE

9. Make yourself at home


Meet people, make friends, and integrate yourself and your family into your new home! Join your company’s social events, get in touch with the expat community, organise play-dates for your children with those of other expats, explore your local area, and enjoy!

10. Travel!

Take advantage of the UAE’s position between Europe, Asia, and Africa, and its great airlines. From Dubai’s airport, for example, you can reach: Mumbai in 3 hours; Cairo in 4 hours; Moscow in 5 hours; Bangkok in about 6 hours; London in about 7; and in about 8 hours you can be in Casablanca!

New UAE entry visa fee from August 2014

The General Directorates of Residency and Foreign Affairs at the Ministry of Interior has completed its technical and services preparations to ensure a flexible implementation of the new visa and fees system across the naturalization, residency and ports affairs sector.
The system will be effective August beginning, by virtue of the Cabinet`s resolution number 22 for the year 2014, regarding the organisation and development of the services at the MoI`s naturalization, residency and ports affairs sector.
Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, issued the ministerial decision number 377 for the year 2014, which amended the applicable regulations on foreigners’ entry and residence. The ministry has announced the promulgation of the new visa fees within the next few days on their website: http://moi.gov.ae.
Major-General Khalifa Hareb Al Khaili, Acting Assistant Undersecretary of the Ministry of Interior for Naturalization, Residency and Ports Affairs, mentioned that the next stage will include the issuance of a new array of entry permits and visas, such as the multiple entry permits for visit or work; the activation of study visas, and entry permits for medical care and attending conferences.
“This comes in response to community members needs and supports various activities, in accordance with the Cabinet`s decision,” Maj-Gen Al Khaili explained.
He also said that the ministerial decision number 377 for the year 2014 coincides with the Cabinet`s decision. The approved amendments take into account the quality and development of services, in addition to meeting social requirements and activities in a way that supports various aspects of economic, touristic and social activities.
The new decision also focuses on violators, which is the key issue in the suggested amendments, as part of an integrated system, which ensures the field efficiency of executive authorities and customers’ satisfaction.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

97m more people using Dubai public transport


  • Image Credit: RTA
  • Dubai Metro remains the most popular mode of transport. It transported 81.40 million riders in the first six months of the year, averaging 452,000 riders daily.


Dubai: Commuters are increasingly opting to use public transport with riders surpassing 260 million during the first half of the year — more than 130 times Dubai’s current population.
Dubai’s public transport ridership increased by 97 million (37 per cent) from January to June this year at 262.56 million from just 165.52 million users from the first half of last year, according to statistics released by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) on Saturday.
The ridership in the first half of the year is only about 40 per cent short of last year’s total ridership of 440.667 million.
Every day from January to June, some 1.45 million commuters used the Dubai Metro, public buses, marine transit modes and taxis. Last year, daily ridership was pegged at 1.3 million.

Water-saving equipment for Dubai mosques soon


The authority on Saturday said it has launched, for the second year, its annual campaign during the holy month of Ramadan under the theme, ‘This Ramadan, let your good deeds outweigh your consumption.’
The awareness campaign is aimed at promoting rational consumption of electricity in line with Dewa’s strategy to raise awareness among individuals and organisations in Dubai on rational consumption of power and water, conserving natural resources and protecting the environment.
As part of the campaign, several mosques in Dubai will be retrofitted with high-tech water reduction equipment to lower water consumption. Dewa is collaborating with the Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities to execute this initiative.
In collaboration with the Ministry of Social Affairs, Beit Al Khair Society, and Etihad Energy Services Company, Dewa will also visit a number of low-income households to replace old appliances with newer more efficient ones to reduce their energy and water costs.
During the initiative, Dewa’s Marketing and Corporate Communications Department is organising educational programmes in government departments, mosques, shopping malls, co-op societies, markets, Ramadan tents and iftar tents for labourers.