Simple ways to leave Dubai with a fat bank account

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How often have you heard about a friend who was in debt when he left Dubai? Expats come to Dubai to make money and add on to their savings, but sometimes get sucked in the glam of the city.

Add to that the high cost of living in the city and expenses like rent, car, travel, and school fees if you are a parent, and your savings might get a hit. It is all about the bigger and better things in Dubai so before you upgrade your car, halt for a moment and rethink.

We bring to you some pointers to rationalize your expenses in Dubai and have hefty savings before you leave.

1. Save first, spend what’s left

Instead of saving what is left after spending, save first and then spend on your needs. Set aside at least 10-20 per cent of your earnings and aim to gradually increase it as you move ahead. And start today, you don’t need to wait for your next salary.

A foolproof way to not touch your savings would be parking your savings in a separate bank account. This will give you a clear picture about your savings and expenses. An ideal situation would be having more money in your savings account than spending one.

2. Don’t convert and splurge

One mistake that most expats coming from stronger currencies (euros, pounds or dollars) make is converting to their local currency and splurging as it doesn’t pinch much. That piece of antique furniture might be a steal once you convert in your local currency but do you really need it?

3. Make investments 

Just parking your money in a bank account will not give you the attractive returns you could make by investing it. Explore for options like Systematic Investment Plans (SIP), mutual funds, bonds in your country or in Dubai to maximize buck for your savings.

4. Don’t get swayed by luxury

One important tip for any expat would be not get swayed by the luxury of the city and hurt your savings. There might be a temptation to upgrade your car, live in a fancy area, try the new restaurants around the block, but always rationalize your spends. It’s okay to splurge once in a while, just don’t make it a habit.

5. Avoid credit cards and loans

As soon you open a bank account, you would get a call for a free credit card or an ‘easy loan’, but it is better to stay away. Don’t forget to pay your credit card bills on the due date as it can cost you a premium for late payment.

6. Shop during festival season

Dubai is home to all the global fashion brands and you might end up spending most of your weekends in the grand malls. Resist making impulsive purchases and look for discounts through the year. Make the bulk of your purchases during the Dubai Shopping Festival as you can save a lot of money.

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