Living in Bahrain
Bahrain is one of the most popular destination expats move to. According to the 2010 census, out of the 1.2 million people living in Bahrain, 666,000 were non-Bahrainis.
Given the large number of expats in the country, it is obvious that expats wouldn’t find it too difficult adjusting to life in this country.
The most popular city in Bahrain is Manama. It is also the capital of Bahrain and the largest city.
Expats moving to Bahrain are usually from countries like India, Pakistan, Egypt, Iran, Philippines and Saudi Arabia. Majority of outsiders in this country are from India.
The people of Bahrain are quite liberal, but there are some rules and regulations that non-nationals are expected to follow.
PDA is considered offensive, hence, must be avoided. Foreigners, especially women, must dress modestly in public. Even men should avoid wearing shorts and tank tops in public.
Consumption of alcohol is prohibited for the locals. However, foreigners are allowed to buy it. To avoid offending the locals’ sentiments, it is advisable to not drink in public.
People of Bahrain are considered to be very open minded and welcoming by nature, so there isn’t much to worry about.
Politics in Bahrain
The first elections in Bahrain were held in the year 2002. Until then, it was a constitutional monarchy. The head of the government since 1971 is Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa and the Crown Prince is Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa.
Expats aren’t allowed to vote in the elections, therefore, do not much much say in the political state of the country.
You can read more about politics in Bahrain on Wikipedia, here.
Economy of Bahrain
Bahrain has a fast growing economy. It is considered to be the financial capital of the Gulf.
It has an open economy. The Bahraini Dinar is the second most valuable currency in the world.
The major industries contributing to the economy of Bahrain are oil and petroleum followed by banking and tourism.
Apart from oil and petroleum, Bahrain is also a major exporter of aluminium products and construction material.
Most expats move to Bahrain for better work opportunities and an increased income. The taxation system in Bahrain makes it simpler for expats to send most of their income to families back home.
If you’re an expat who has lived and worked in Bahrain for more than 12 months, your tax deductions will be similar to the locals. Income tax is usually deducted from the salary itself, which makes managing your income so much simpler.
Anyone with a job in Bahrain is required to pay 1% of their total salary as tax to the Government. In addition to this, an extra 5% is deducted as social security. With only 6% of the total salary deducted for tax, most people take home a hefty paycheque.
Buying or Renting Property in Bahrain
Since most expats move here for work, their employers usually take care of accommodation. If not, you can always buy or rent property on your own.
However, there are some restrictions when it comes to buying property.
A non-national is allowed to buy property only if it is freehold.
The catch here is, freehold property isn’t available easily and is available only in select areas. You can still try searching for one here. To know more about how to buy a house in Bahrain, here’s an article you might find useful.
For renting a house in Bahrain, it would be wise to ask your employer of colleagues for help. Or you can look up online.
When renting a house, you’ll have the option to opt for a furnished house or a non-furnished house.
You can also choose between living in an apartment or living in a house. The rents will vary accordingly.
Usually, a rent lease is for an year. Short terms lease is quite rare.
Visa and Immigration
Schools in Bahrain
When moving to a foreign country, expats always have the option of sending their children to an international school. Bahrain is no exception.
Here’s a list of IB schools in Bahrain for you to choose from.
The people and government of Bahrain consider education to be a very important aspect for shaping the society. Which is why, education in Bahrain is free. The government considers it their responsibility to educate both, girls and boys, until secondary level.
Bahrain has a remarkable literacy rate of 95.7%.
Bahrain also has the highest female literacy rate in the Arabian peninsula, going up to 93.5%.
Find out more about the education system of Bahrain here.
Weather in Bahrain
Bahrain is a country in the Gulf. Whether you are moving here permanently or for a short period of time, be prepared to face the heat.
The average temperature in Bahrain is between 18 to 30 degree celsius.
Check out the current weather of Bahrain here.
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