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Old 10-08-2008, 01:29 PM
Location: Winfield, WV
1,866 posts, read 3,424,861 times
Reputation: 526


I'm a COT for a local telecomm company in the USA, and i've been in discussions with a company about moving to Dubai and work in the telecomm industry there for the term of a 5 year contract.

The deal is we would work for 2 months, then have 2 months off to return home. So you only have to work 6 months out of the year and still recieve a pretty reasonable salary. The money i could make there would be triple what i'm making in the USA.

Anybody here have experience in working overseas in a rotating shift such as this? Do you eventually grow apart from your family?

Thanks for any responses.
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Old 10-08-2008, 02:10 PM
Location: rain city
2,958 posts, read 11,355,283 times
Reputation: 4909
5 years is well beyond the time frame for most overseas contracts. A more usual case would be one or two years on the original contract with the possibility of extension[s]. Wonder why this company is asking for five years up front? Unusual.

In the case of hardship posts (like Iraq for example), the employee is required to leave the post for one month every six months, so out of the country for two months per year. Salary is figured on an annual basis so the two months off is paid for. Unfortunately the actual expenses for leaving are usually not paid for, even though the time off is. So the travel cost is on you.

However Dubai is not considered a hardship post. I'm flummoxed as to why they would require you to leave every 2 months? If this offer were on my table I would question the requirement for leaving every 2 months.

You should also be very clear with the company on a couple of other points.

1)Housing. Who pays and what kind. Sounds like they might be putting you up in a serviced apartment or a hotel.

2)Visas. Visas can be a major headache. Ask the company if they provide visa support, including work permits, etc.

I've know a number of people from various countries who have done this kind of work. It can be extremely lucrative. And yes, it can be hard on families. Most of the people I have know who did such things were single men. It's less usual to recruit men with families.

If you can work out the family absence issue to everyone's satisfaction, it could be the opportunity of a lifetime.

One caveat, before making a decision demand to see the entire contract they are offering. Until you have read every word you cannot know exactly what kind of deal you are committing to. Read the contract very very carefully. Five years is a long haul.
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Old 10-11-2008, 08:56 PM
Location: AmCit in Philippines
351 posts, read 1,720,160 times
Reputation: 224
You've been well-advised above. I know people who have had similar contracts, but usually with oil servicing companies and hardship locations. It IS a bit odd that you're being offered a two-on, two-off contract.

The people I know who have taken these contracts and have done well tend to be older, retirees. They've raised their families, are getting a pension, and are supplementing their money through work like this. They've also worked overseas before.

Dubai is a country where whole families move. In theory, the theory is that if its possible to keep families together, the employee does better because his (or her) support network is with him. However, living overseas still has its stresses.

If you have a young family, you may want to consider whether you want to be apart from them for the next five years. Even if you are home 50% of the time, it's a chopped up lifestyle. Your wife is left to deal with household and child rearing matters. You're going to spend the first two weeks home reacclimatizing, and the last week getting ready (psychologically) to return. That makes you useful (to the family) five of the eight weeks you are home.

Make sure that the company will be paying for the plane tickets home, too. That is usual with a contract like this, but if it's not included, it will eat in to your profits.
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Old 10-11-2008, 09:32 PM
Location: Lafayette, Louisiana
14,095 posts, read 23,685,664 times
Reputation: 7984
I'd be very cautious of going to ANY muslim nation. I've been to several muslim nations and they can be very touchy about the littlest things. If you do decide to go then try to learn everything you can about local customs and traditions. Knew a guy who accidentally started a riot in Cairo because he exchanged his boxed lunch for a statue. He didn't know it was against their religion to eat pork and his meal included a ham sandwich. He was lucky to get out alive.
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Old 10-14-2008, 01:06 AM
Location: Olympus Mons, Mars
5,691 posts, read 8,599,419 times
Reputation: 5786
Not only have I been to Dubai but my brother worked there and I also know many friends who work there. Although it appears to be a very modern place, which it is in terms of infrastructure, there still are things like racism to deal with. The arabs are openly racist people and that is very bothersome. Salaries are based on race with white british commanding the highest and blacks the lowest.

I would take the opporunity just to experience a different part of the world, but that is just me In addition if you like to travel, Dubai is much closer to Europe, Africa and Asia. The salaries there are tax free but not sure whether Uncle Sam will be holding his hand out trying to steal your money from there too.
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Old 10-16-2008, 07:13 PM
9,830 posts, read 19,577,532 times
Reputation: 7604
The IRS tax free exemption is $84,000 last I looked but it requires you to live outside the country for 11 months of the year.

The british couple caught having sex on the beach in Dubai just got sentenced to 3 months in prison, so it's definitely a place one needs to know the rules and why's and wherefore's.

Personally, my opinion is with the petrodollars evaporating quickly and the world economy going downhill, I question the future viability of Dubai. The climate is hostile, many of the near neighbors are hostile, it has many rules and regs westerners and others are not used to, etc.
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Old 10-16-2008, 10:58 PM
Location: CA
3,469 posts, read 7,149,451 times
Reputation: 4789
yeah, don't have sex on the beach
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