As Benjamin Franklin noted ‘In this world nothing is certain but death and taxes’. This goes for the apparently tax free zone in which I am now living. There are various charges for various things, which may not be tax by name but are certainly tax by nature.
I am now on the penultimate stage of being UAE street legal. I’ve got that pink piece of paper and I’ve had the blood test. Am just awaiting the results and the health ‘insurance‘ and then I should have that coveted stamp in my passport.
Both spouse and myself are completely covered by his company’s global insurance. However, we still have to pay for UAE health insurance even though we will never actually need to use it. What makes it worse, is that I have to take out a separate policy rather than just being added to the spouse policy. Being female, this costs a lot more because of what appears to be compulsory maternity cover. Given that we can’t have children this is patently absurd. When we pointed this fact out we were asked if we had any document to prove it. Of course we bloody don’t!! The tests were done over 10 years ago and if we did ever have any piece of paper that told us the bad news we probably ripped it up into tiny pieces and consigned it to the bin.
We have since discovered that there are actually cheaper and easier ways to do all of this but given that spouse’s company had no presence here before, they didn’t have a clue! So it has been a matter of research, trial, error and expense. In fact we have lost track of the amount of money that has been paid in the course of this whole process. I can’t decide, however, if you are buying your residency or just paying a year’s tax in advance!!