If you have already found a job in Saudi Arabia, then you know that this country has the strongest economy in the Middle East and that you are not the only one moving for business reasons. However, moving there, or anywhere, is stressful, and not to mention, time, energy, and money-consuming. But, things get even more complicated when you add culture shock to the already long moving list. Besides preparing your belongings for relocation, you will also need to prepare yourself. Saudi Arabia is a country driven by rigid rules which will definitely change your lifestyle. However, there is no need to worry - we are here to help you out! Thus, if you are moving to Saudi Arabia for work, here is what you should know.
First things first, you have to find accommodation. When it comes to Saudi Arabia, renting is a much better choice as it is cheaper in the long run, and it requires minimal paperwork. So, we advise you to come earlier, stay in a hotel and, if you have a lot of stuff, rent storage before settling in a new home. This way, you will be able to look at homes by yourself and find one that suits your needs and budget the most.
However, if you have never done this before, or you are not sure where to start as this is a country completely different from yours, consider hiring a local real estate agent to help you out.
And, when it comes to accommodation options in Saudi Arabia, you are in for a treat. You can choose from expat compound houses, villas, apartments, old townhouses, etc. Also, the good news is - almost all rental properties come fully equipped! The rental cost, of course, depends on the size and type of your home, location, and all the amenities included. But, you should not worry much about pricing, as the rental costs for expats are usually not too high.
Prepare for Saudi Arabia's Climate
After finding a job and renting or buying a property abroad, everything else will seem a lot easier. However, that does not mean that you can go to Saudi Arabia unprepared. The first thing you should prepare for is the climate there. Maybe this does not sound too serious for you right now, but once you walk into this desert area, you may wish to go back home. The daytime temperatures can go to almost 50 degrees Celsius every day. Moreover, snow and rain are not something you will experience here. So, if you are moving to Saudi Arabia from Europe, the USA, or another place where temperatures are not as high, you must really think about whether you can stand this heat.
If you have some health issues, you should consult a doctor before you relocate. High temperatures can take a toll on one's health, so be careful. Another thing to keep in mind is the dress code here, as the rules about how one may dress are very strict. Be sure that you will not be able to dress as you please, even when faced with scorching temperatures.
Get Familiar With All the Rules and Regulations
Besides the temperature and the weather conditions, another thing you must prepare yourself for are all the rules and regulations that come with moving to Saudi Arabia for work. As mentioned before, these new rules will make you change your life, or at least, modify it a bit. You, as an expat, must comply. That means that you should not do anything that might offend the locals. For example, you should not practice any religion besides Islam, you should not drink alcohol in public, and you should dress appropriately at all times, whether you are a man or a woman. There are many more rules, regulations, and laws you should comply with. Thus, before you relocate, make sure you do your homework.
Find a Moving Company and Move Your Belongings
Last but certainly not the least thing you should do, after making sure that you can accept Saudi Arabia's lifestyle, is to make moving arrangements. As mentioned earlier, you do not have to overpack as most rental properties come fully equipped. So, pack only the household items you simply cannot live without. Moreover, do not pack too many clothes either, as you will likely have to change them for lighter ones once you arrive. Also, in most cases, buying new items in Saudi Arabia might be a lot cheaper than relocating everything you own.
Thus, to put it shortly - declutter, and bring only what is necessary. Then, find an international moving company to help you with the belongings you must relocate. Finding experienced movers is imperative if you want to make sure all of your items are properly packed, shipped, and transported to your new address. Of course, you can do this by yourself as well, but it will require a lot of planning and time. So, save yourself from that trouble, and hire a moving agency to assist you.