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The numerous local and international banks offer all the usual banking services with some offering offshore banking. There are no government restrictions on the international transfer of funds into or out of the country. (more…)

dirhamsWhether you have been living in Dubai for a while or you are just about to make the transition to this fabulous hub of expat life, looking after your money is essential. Thousands of people are lured to Dubai for the bright lights, great shopping and fantastic career and investment opportunities, but whatever the reason for your big move to UAE, there are some things to bear in mind when dealing with currency. Read this quick guide so that you can ensure you avoid the most common currency ripoffs and make your money go further.

Find An Money Transfer Specialist And Stick With Them

At some point during your move to Dubai you will need to make a money transfer. This could involve transferring savings from your offshore account to your new Dubai account or it could be that you need to lay down a deposit on accommodation in the city. Read more

offshore-bank-accountAs daunting as it may be, the prospect of opening up yet another bank account to add yet another card to your wallet, and remember yet another set of pin numbers this really should one of the very first things you do when you become an expatriate.

It used to be the case that offshore banks were traditionally used by the ultra-wealthy. Secret bank accounts in Switzerland or the Cayman islands spring to mind. To most they probably seemed like a bit of a pipe dream. If only you were rich enough to open such an account, to stash your millions! But that really is no longer the case and offshore bank accounts are readily and easily accessible.

You will benefit from an offshore account if you live outside your home country, frequently move between countries, or are perhaps thinking of retiring abroad. You will especially benefit from an offshore bank account if you are a resident here in the UAE.

Of course we all need some sort of deposit account locally as this is usually where ones salary is paid into, where cheque books are issued from and where local bills such as your DEWA bill are paid. However if you are only going to take one step towards looking after your money as an expatriate here in the Middle East it should be to open up an offshore bank account.

But why is it so important? Read more

saving-money-as-an-expatAside from the lure of sunnier climes many individuals are drawn to live and work in other countries for increased pay, better benefits, even lower tax, and in some cases no tax at all.

Becoming an expatriate can carry with it many financial benefits and the notion that one could come back to their home country not only more tanned, but somewhat richer too.

And so…. the plan is hatched! The usual time scale considered is 5 years and many expats will spend time conjuring up their 5 year plan master plan. A plan of accumulating as much wealth as possible before moving back to their country of domicile or moving to another location.

But how many expats actually stick to this 5-year plan?

Is it really possible to make a significant injection to your overall net worth in this period of time and what is the best way of going about it?

The sad truth is that thousands of expats have dreams of making big pots of cash, only to end up totally broke with hardly any savings, after years spent living the high life.  So how do you make sure you don’t return broke and how do you make your plan as effective as possible? Read more

cgtNon-UK resident homeowners, who have moved abroad will be liable to pay capital gains tax from 2015 on their UK properties.

Capital gains tax will be payable on property value increases

Tax will be up to 28%

You can take action now by becoming your own financial adviser.

UK expats
Homeowners who are non-resident in the UK for tax purposes will be liable for capital gains tax from 2015. Capital gains tax is payable on any property value increase after April 2015. Currently, any British resident pay up to 28% capital gains tax on gains over Read more

There is certainly no set rule that says that you must tip in Dubai however the general consensus amongst expats seems to be a resounding you should indeed tip. Perhaps the happy residue of stringent tipping stipulations in many of our home countries. The expat voice of reason however is slightly more muffled when one posses the questions; how much should you tip, when and which services (if any) are excluded from our strongly held belief in tipping. So what on earth shall dictate our social and financial decorum in the absence of hard and fast rules to follow? Answer, majority rules, empathy and common sense of course. The team at Expat Echo Dubai summarizes… Read more

money-transferWhether you have just arrived in the UAE or you have been living in Dubai for a number of years, the chances are that you have used or will need to use a money transfer service – that is unless you brought all of your money over in a suitcase!

Transfer Tip #1 – Avoid High Transfer Fees

If you are transferring money from your UK account to your Dubai account and you are using your UK bank, you could face charges of up to £40 per transaction. And it usually makes no difference if your bank has branches in Dubai – the charge is the charge and that’s it. If you’re making just two transfers per month, you could be racking up a total charges bill of almost £1000 in a year. Read more

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