Is Dubai Cheap or Expensive for Students?

Table of Contents

Is Dubai Cheap or Expensive for Students – Dubai may be considered relatively expensive for students when looking at the city surface-levelly. However, compared to other cities, the cost of living—including housing, transportation, and food—is not as expensive as it may seem. It is all about how you budget and plan your spending; it all boils down to how you decide to spend your money. “Is Dubai cheap or expensive” is such a frequent question that many people ask as the popularity of Dubai keeps growing. But, if you ask someone living in Deira, Dubai or Downtown Dubai—the answers may vary. Each person has their own priorities and their own amount of earnings. Dubai is an incredibly comfortable and safe place where you can make the choices you want and design your life.

Is Dubai Cheap or Expensive for Students

In Dubai, you can live highly luxe, or you can live in a super budget-friendly manner. It’s crucial to remember that solutions are available for students with various budgets. For example, scholarships and financial aid are available to students at some universities and institutions in Dubai, which helps lessen the financial strain. Moreover, there are simple tricks that one can do to live in a more wallet-friendly way.

When asking if Dubai is cheap or expensive, there are many things to remember when trying to find ways to make a luxurious city that you can call home. In this blog, we will share some factors you must consider before declaring whether Dubai is cheap or expensive. One key thing that can make or break your wallet is…drumroll ???

What area in Dubai will you be living in?

Choose to live in areas such as Dubai Marina, Downtown Dubai, Palm Jumeirah, Jumeirah, Al Barsha, Al Quoz or Mirdiff. Dubai will be expensive for you as these areas are more ‘developed’ or reserved for those with higher incomes or earnings. These areas are rich with many publicized landmarks, many things available to keep you interested and many amenities you can find, such as beaches, parks and other sites with plenty of facilities. These areas have a lot of tourist attractions too, so you won’t be bored. However, this is also why these areas are a bit more pricey.

Dubai will be cheap if you live in areas such as Bur Dubai, Deira, Al Karama, Al Qusais, Al Nahda or Muhaisnah. It is not that these areas are absolute trash and have nothing to offer to their people. On the contrary, these areas are also surrounded by public amenities such as groceries, shopping centres, clinics and hospitals, public parks etc. It is just that these amenities are not high-end and are super affordable. These are the areas that most working-class people live in, and these are the areas where you will find a lot of expatriates. Another benefit of living in these areas is easy access to public transport. Due to heavy population density and demand for public transport, you will find metros and bus stops within walking distance from wherever you live. In addition, you’ll find plenty of affordable facilities right around the corner.

Food Costs

No matter where you live, a positive factor is getting the things you need, such as groceries and food. With endless types of restaurants, your tastebuds and cravings will always be treated. Plenty of food options range from things you can get for a dollar to stuff you can get for a hundred. It depends on which restaurant you go for; you can find these out through menus posted online. Speaking of online services, you can get things ordered for you via many apps and services to save time. The convenience of living in Dubai is unmatched!

Bills Bills Bills

Another thing you should consider is your utility bills. Utility bills in Dubai are less expensive than you think, especially if you live in an environmentally-conscious way. Of course, the usual tips and tricks follow, such as never leaving a room with lights on if you are not going to be there, do not leave the tap running and so on and so forth. The Dubai government is very transparent on matters like this. On their website, you will find many resources to help conserve as much energy as possible while ensuring your bills do not rack up. Another benefit to living here is not having to pay taxes. Taxes here are distributed in other ways, such as VATs, while purchasing things. Another cost that comes in a tax-free city is that you might need to pay for tolls on certain roads or parking spots. But, if you take toll-free roads or use public transport, these costs will not hurt you!

Transportation & Entertainment

When it comes to transportation and entertainment, this is where things can get expensive. Transport, like the metro, can start to rack up the more you use it. However, it can be easier to manage once you get your other expenses sorted. Entertainment is where you really get to choose how you spend your money. There are plenty of places where it can be cheap to do things, such as public parks, beaches and so on. There are plenty of promenades, for example, JBR Walk or Dubai Marina, that you can hang out in and walk around with friends. There are discounted prices in restaurants and bars where you can have fun but on a budget.

There are endless other activities you can indulge yourself in, such as classes for all kinds of hobbyists, like pottery or rug-making places. If you are an adrenaline junkie, there are daredevil activities like sky-diving and zip-lining off buildings or mountains. And of course, the infamous nightlife speaks for itself, with many nightclubs, karaoke bars and even arcades. But entertainment is really a choice. So if you have some money to spare, take the time to explore this city that is full of opportunities and fun memories to collect.

So…What is the Verdict?

When deciding where to live, talk to one of our advisors or email in. It all depends on your needs and wants, and we promise your stay in Dubai will change your life! Stay tuned for more Dubai-related posts where we tell you more about what this beautiful city offers!

Get a scholarship within 48 hours?

let us help you find your ideal university with a guaranteed scholarship

Picture of Sujay Patekar

Sujay Patekar

Sujay Patekar has a diverse background but primarily has experience in the public relations domain where he has been dealing with a wide spectrum of people either for business or consultation practices. Currently he is working as the Assistant Admissions Manager for the UAE region.

Share Blog on -


Related Articles

SecureMyScholarship Mascot

Want a scholarship within 48 hours ?

let us help you find your ideal university with a guaranteed scholarship

SecureMyScholarship Mascot