The Blog for Culture Vultures

Satiate your inner Culture Vulture with regular news and posts about cultural awareness, doing business abroad, working in a multicultural environment, HR diversity and global mobility.

How Does Islam Impact Doing Business in the Middle East?

Islam-MiddleEast

Are you new to doing business with the Middle East? Understanding the local culture is critical if you want to succeed.

In order to truly understand the locals, then you need to understand Islam and its influence on, not only the culture, but how business gets done.

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Supermodel Accused of Racism Over Cultural Faux Pas

Supermodel Accused of Racism Over Cultural Faux Pas

Did you hear about the supermodel, the airport lounge and the cultural faux pas that caused uproar in Saudi Arabia and the UAE?

No? Well this is a great little example of culture gone wrong!

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What are the Most Common Causes of Culture Shock for Expats Moving to the Middle East?

What are the Most Common Causes of Culture Shock for Expats Moving to the Middle East?

Providing relocation training for expats moving to the Middle East means that we get to hear a great deal about people’s experiences in their new home country.

Although moving to the Middle East can be an incredibly positive experience, it goes without saying that adapting to new cultures and ways of doing things can be a challenge.

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Culturally Aware Taxi Drivers Ensure Good PR for The UAE

Culturally Aware Taxi Drivers Ensure Good PR for The UAE

If you’ve visited the UAE, then you’ll know that one of the things they do really well (particularly in Dubai), is to create great visitor experiences.

The UAE is known for its beautiful architecture, luxurious hotels, beautiful mosques, cultural landmarks and incredible tourist attractions.

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Is the Accorhotels CEO Ignorant of Saudi Culture?

Is the Accorhotels CEO Ignorant of Saudi Culture?

Saudi Arabia is on a mission to diversify its economy and reduce its reliance on oil revenue.

As part of this, they are looking to become a global tourist destination – something that their UAE neighbours, particularly, Dubai, have accomplished to great effect.

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New Expat in the UAE? Everything You Should Know About Ramadan in a Nutshell!

New Expat in the UAE? Everything You Should Know About Ramadan in a Nutshell!

For new expats relocating to the UAE, it’s fair to say that the transformation that takes place during the month of Ramadan can present quite a cultural shock to those who don’t understand it.

Whether you’re in the more conservative area of Sharjah, or, in the more liberal Dubai, Ramadan generally plays out in the same way and the same traditions and practices are observed.

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What Can Google Search Teach Us About UAE Culture?

What Can Google Search Teach Us About UAE Culture?

Google Search Engine data provides a fantastic window into the cultures of different countries by giving us an insight into online searches.

By understanding what people within that country or culture are searching for, we can start to appreciate the topics and concerns that bind them together.

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British Mum Facing Time in UAE Jail for Social Media Post

British Mum Facing Time in UAE Jail for Social Media Post

Did you know that the UAE has some of the strictest laws governing social media?

Despite its reputation as a global commerce and tourism hotspot, the Arab state has strict laws which on occassion take foreigners by surprise.

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Being Clueless about UAE Culture Won’t Protect You from Punishment

Being Clueless about UAE Culture Won’t Protect You from Punishment

A survey by the UAE’s security magazine, 999, has shown that most expatriates visiting the UAE are doing so while blind to UAE cultural customs and traditions.

Seven out of ten of the 2,000 expatriates included in the survey claimed to not understand local Emirati culture and traditions.

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Dubai First Gov Games - a Great Lesson in Driving Cultural Diversity

Dubai First Gov Games - a Great Lesson in Driving Cultural Diversity

With over 7 million of its 9 million population classed as non-Emirati, the UAE has become an incredible melting point of cultures and nationalities.

Owing to Dubai’s relatively relaxed attitude and job opportunities, the majority of these expats reside in Dubai itself. Of these expats, South East Asians make up the largest proportion with approximately 8% of Westerners making up the smaller portion.

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Middle Finger Gesture Lands Briton in Dubai Courts

Middle Finger Gesture Lands Briton in Dubai Courts

Having worked in Dubai for over 10 years, one of the things that constantly amazes me about visitors to the Emirate is that they think they have landed in some sort of desert version of Las Vegas, where everything goes.

Well, as British IT consultant Jamil Ahmed Mukadam has found out - it is anything but.

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UK Getting Cheaper for Expatriate Relocation Packages

UK Getting Cheaper for Expatriate Relocation Packages

Traditionally one of the more expensive destinations to send expatriate staff, a survey has found that the UK is now becoming cheaper for foreign companies.


The MyExpatriate Market Pay survey (published annually by ECA International) states that for the past few years the fall in the value of UK Sterling has meant that for companies outside the country, operating mainly in USD, sending resources to Britain has become around 11% cheaper.

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New App to Give Insight into Swazi Language and Culture

New App to Give Insight into Swazi Language and Culture
Always wanted to know more about the Swazi language and culture but found plane tickets a tad too expensive? With the new SiSwApp that is to be launched in February next year, the culture of the beautiful African country will unfold itself before your very eyes!
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UAE is top world expat destination

The United Arab Emirates is the world’s top destination for expatriates in terms of personal taxation, according to a new study.

Mercer’s ‘Worldwide Individual Tax Comparator Report’, a global survey of expatriate hotspots, looks at tax and benefits systems across 32 countries, focusing on personal tax structures, average salaries and marital status. Data from the survey is used by multinationals to structure pay packages for their expatriate and local market employees.

For single managers, the UAE has the most attractive tax environment according to the percentage of net income available, the survey finds. The country earns its no. 1 ranking by not assessing income tax, with social security contributions amounting to just 5% of a local employee’s gross salary.

Read more> UAE 
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HR costs soaring in Dubai

Dubai has attracted many international companies and employees over recent years, as it bids to become a global economic superpower.

Managing the UAE's HR Environment, a report by Mercer HR Consulting, showed that average salaries for expatriate staff rose by 6% last year. Daily allowances rose by more than 20%, and multinationals now pay an average of about £240 a day for executive expats on short-term assignments in Dubai - one of the seven states that make up the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

These soaring costs are leading companies to be more creative with their HR practices, according to Markus Wiesner, head of Mercer's UAE operations.

Read more: Dubai 
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