Expatriate life is not getting any cheaper. This week I have not one but two money saving ideas which I hope you find useful.
First off, school fees. With typical fees ranging from AED40,000 to AED100,000 per annum depending on the age of the child any saving would be welcome. The other thing with school fees is they are payable termly. They are not spread evenly throughout the year. This makes budgeting more difficult. Several banks are offering parents the opportunity to fund their children’s school fees using an interest free facility via their credit card. The loan is repaid on a monthly basis throughout the year, making budgeting easier. Whilst I am not usually one to encourage borrowing for expenses which are normally funded out of income this is an exception. The banks do charge a small establishment fee but this is recouped over the year due to the cash bonus paid by these deals. Depending on how much and where you use your credit card you can get up to 10% of the amount you spend, including your school fees loan repayment, back. Initially I found this hard to believe but it is true. So, this deal could save a parent several thousand dirhams a year.
Second, as all Dubai residents should now be insured via a Dubai Health Authority approved plan many people have asked me to review the benefits of the plan their employers have provided. Often these plans provide the basic benefits required by Dubai Health Authority and fall short of the expectations of employees. Unfortunately, until very recently there were no Dubai Health Authority approved alternatives. Consequently, those who wished to have more comprehensive cover were forced to pay for the benefits already provided by their employer as well as the new benefits they wanted which was a waste of money. Dubai Health Authority has now authorised one of the insurance companies to provide a top up plan which has better a wider geographic area of cover and richer inpatient benefits. However, unlike the Dubai Health Authority plan, which all Dubai residents have, pre-existing conditions are not covered. This means that putting cover in place is easier and cheaper.
I hope you find these two money saving ideas of interest. If you would like more details please contact me.