I stumbled upon an article which basically explains how much it costs to be a socialite in Dubai. One says it will cost about AED40k put into partying and dining out. That is a ridiculous amount of money.
I am thankful that we, and the friends that we’ve been blessed with in Dubai (*waves*!), are similar to us when it comes to having a good time 🙂 And that is, it does not have to cost a lot.
Dubai is not a cheap city. I miss 10NZD yum cha in Mandarin Palace, or, maybe 15NZD if we go to China on Beach Road. No more 7.50NZD roast pork on rice. Or 10NZD Korean BBQ. I’m not going to even start comparing to kolomee in Kuching.
But, there are a lot of ways that you can have a really good time, without spending a fortune! Most of what my blog is about, other than service, is on how to rack up a good deal.
For girls, drinking is really cheap in Dubai. If you’re up to it, you could literally go out for a drink or two every night, for free. Ladies nights?
Brunches? You can get a lot of great deals for 250AED and less, for all you can eat and drink. Our social lives is ( proudly 😉 ) planned around Entertainer Monthly Offers and One Day Deals. We’ve been to fairly dodgy ones to a lot of good places that usually cost 400AED, but ends up being half price with the 2 for 1s. Karma Kafe, Ballaro, Villa Romana, Beachcombers, to name a few. Tomorrow we’re going to Asia Asia which will cost us 200AED per person inclusive of drinks, for a normal price of 400AED.
Every now and then we’ll break the rule, if a friend was organising a birthday and had already booked a place that did not involve any deals. That’s why I’ve been to Pure Sky for 3 times now, ha ha. Plus the fact that they have amazing wagyu, and service 😉
So no, we’ve yet to experience Saffron for their Friday brunch. Or Bubbalicious. Or Al Qasr for their massive spread. Al Muna is on the list though – it’s in the Entertainer Dubai book 🙂
What about casual dinner out with friends after work? Why not plan it during Happy Hour, or Ladies Night where you can use the Entertainer Voucher as well? Don’t give me the ‘Omg that’s so much effort’ excuse. It’s not. Well at least it’s not for me. Last Sunday G and I dropped by Apres in MOE for a meal. I had 3 cocktails, we shared a pizza and pasta. The bill came up to be 75AED. It was ladies night. There was a 2 for 1.
I can go on. Last night a group of us went to Tolosa Bodega after work. The girls had a lot of sangria, and white wine. We all had mains. Took out the Entertainer App, and saved a fortune. As with a lot of expats, we enjoy a drink or two. Sometimes a bit too much 😉 Few weeks ago we went to Societe for an ‘afternoon out’. The first 50 to book could avail to unlimited drinks from 4-8pm, for free. A massive group of us booked in and had an amazing night out, most of which we could not remember 😉
The same goes with spa’s. One-day deals are aplenty. It’s a bit of a gamble with those I admit. I’ve been to some dodgy ones. And then you get lucky and find those you stick to.
If you’re sick of the party scene in Dubai (really? 😉 ) – there are really nice afternoon tea’s that we’ve been to that did not cost a bomb. Al Bayt in The Palace Hotel and Kambaa in The Address Dubai Marina – there’s still quite a few in the Ent Book that I want to do but haven’t gotten around to.
Just tonight, G and I dropped by Miu Shanghai in MOE for a proper Nasi Goreng and Stir-Fry Udon which was absolutely delicious for only 55AED for two with the Entertainer. Of course you add on drinks which adds up to about 100AED but c’mon that’s 30NZD, which is pretty OK.
So c’mon, Dubai is only as expensive as you make it to be. Put a bit of effort and use those vouchers and click around online of them one-day deals. I bought them books in Auckland over 5 years, and it was the first thing I looked for when I moved here. If you like a drink or two, you could go for a brunch every single weekend and spend only 200AED. Not 500AED. And for goodness sakes, definitely not 40000AED a month. That’s just crazy.
And well, we’ve never ever been to the 5 restaurants in that article. We’re not fussed about being seen. That’s probably why you don’t even see our faces in this blog 😉
We’re just keen on having a good time without spending a fortune. And I know that a lot of people in Dubai are in the same shoes. Look, if you like a few drinks after work, and a great more in the weekends, you really don’t have to break your wallet doing it. There are a lot of ways to do it wisely, it just takes a little bit of planning. Salute to One Day Deals, Anything discount-related, and The Entertainer for making it possible.
5 thoughts on “#29 Dubai – it’s as expensive as you make it to be”
Great post! I agree that there are so many things to do in and around Dubai (and the UAE) that don’t have to cost an arm and a leg… you just have to not fall for the “glitz and glam” of everything, and rather do what you guys do – look for the vouchers and specials! They are so worth it 🙂
Thanks! 🙂 Yeah, it is worth it!! 😀
I’m completely with you on this one. Going out in Dubai can be ridiculously expensive, but it doesn’t have to, not at all:)
Yeah, some of the really ex places I’ve been eye-ing for awhile and just waiting, waiting for when a deal comes on haha!
This is a good one ! 🙂