- Anybody on here worked in Saudi?
Its very, very safe, far safer than anywhere in Europe. Not lived in Saudi but worked there via Bahrain.
There not the most welcoming of people, but as with everywhere there is good and bad. Saudi is different though, and the Saudis have a different mentality to say the UAE or Bahrain. The Saudis were always desert dwellers opposed to the more trade oriented people who inhabit the UAE, this is reflected in the mood of the place and lack of regional muli-culture. As a foreigner you'd live on a compound, normally with good facilities, pool, gym, and probably a maid. Social life is very 'ex patty' and kept within compounds and hotels. No legal booze, but moonshine is easy to get through ex pats for discreet home consumption.
If you have a female partner she wont be able to drive, kids go to Private schools, often all paid for by the employer. Remember the UAE, Oman and Bahrain are not that far, so check you'd get some time off for long weekend breaks in the region, a lot of that area is really nice – Oman pennisular and mountains in the UAE has amazing biking potential, bound to be someone running trips from Dubai. The closer to there or Abu Dhabi the better!Posted 8 years ago
I'm based in Dubai at the moment but I was posted to Dammam and Jubail for just over a month earlier this year and I still visit every couple of months.
First things first – there are no mountains on the Arabian (Persian) Gulf side of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). This means that there is no mountain biking in that area; there are however mountains elsewhere in KSA. I would strongly advise against trying road cycling, the locals road discipline would politely be described as "French". My weekly commute (in a car) on the three lane highway between Dammam and Jubail was terrifying. I would be doing about 140kph overtaking in the fast lane and there would be people overtaking me at 160 to 180kph on the dirt between the fast lane and the central reservation…
After that you need to weigh up the pros and cons.
Getting to see a new culture
No women drivers 😉
Virtually never rains
Your company is likely to pay you well
The locals in KSA are unlikely to befriend you, especially if you don't speak arabic
It would frankly be shit for your wife if you have one and if you have a girlfriend there is no chance of getting her into the country until you're married. If you’re gay forget it.
It gets to above 50 deg C. in the summer.
Many people live in a compound something that I chose not to do because the compounds are often filled with bitter ex-pat alcoholics (yes alcohol is illegal but there's a black market). That said if you have a wife then you basically have no choice.Posted 8 years ago-m-Member
I did a project in Riyadh a few years back – travelling out there for 2-3 weeks at a time over a period of 3-4 months. It's not a place I'd choose to live/work.
Security/safety is always a personal decision. Personally I think there's always a far greater risk of being killed/injured in a road accident than there ever has of a terrorist attack (and I've been to a number of places specified as 'essential travel only' by the FCO), so isn't something that worries me unduly.
EDIT: Having said that, my general view about security in Saudi as compared to Europe would be somewhat at odds with that of haddock above…Posted 8 years agotygerMember
A couple of jobs have been passed my way but I'm reluctant to take them up when I read news reports like this:-
How "safe" (stable) is it out there? What are the pros and cons?
CheersPosted 8 years ago
jabbathehut – I work for a company called Alderley, based in Jebel Ali Free Zone, we make fiscal metering systems for the oil and gas industry.
Riding in the evening, even at this time of year, isn't too bad. I know of a spare bike you can use if you want.
E-mail me if you fancy meeting up for a drink or mountain biking:Posted 8 years ago
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