Moving to a new city or country is hard. Moving to a new city without friends is harder. Dubai is a wonderful city, but it can be a little intimidating when you don’t really know anyone there. Here are some ways you can rectify that situation and help you ease into living in this wonderful city:

Join a meetup

When you’re new in town, it can be really helpful to attend a meetup. Not only does this help you meet new people and make new friends, it also lets you find groups with similar interests. Whether it’s a professional networking event or a casual coffee morning, or something more unusual like a board game night, you’ll find it all on Other ways to make friends with others in your industry or those who share your interests would be through through social mixers, breakfast meetups and industry events.

Meet parents through your children/school activities

Children are often a great social magnet to meeting and making friends with other parents, through school runs, playdates, birthday parties and extracurricular activities. Try to make the effort to get to know the other school parents or offer to be class mum or organize a playdate in the park or a soft play area. These are all great ways to meet people and make friends with whom you can socialize, and have the kids make new friends too!

Volunteer for a cause

There are some very worthwhile causes in the UAE that could need a helping hand from you. You can volunteer your time and expertise helping a cause that is near and dear to you. There’s everything from general volunteering opportunities through to specific causes including the local animal shelters and helping kids with special needs and so much more. This is a great way to meet kind, gentle-hearted people who share similar interests.

Mingle with people you already know

You already know someone in Dubai. Maybe it’s a neighbour, maybe it’s a co-worker. While we aren’t advising you to leech onto their social circle in search of new friends, there are times when it could work out. Sometimes all you need is one connection into a group, and it can open up a new door to a potential friendship pool. So go ahead, dive right in!

Adopt a pet

An unusual solution, for sure. But if you can afford to take care of a dog and aren’t allergic, we recommend adopting a fur-baby when you move to a new home. Owning a dog will not only make it easier to meet your new dog-friendly neighbors, but it will also provide you with companionship during lonely times. Dogs can be a great conversation starter, making it easy to approach (and be approached by) neighbors and potential new friends. Studies also consistently show that owning a dog can lower anxiety, stress and loneliness while improving your physical health. Just make sure your apartment building allows large pets.

For more information about living in the UAE or buying and renting properties in the UAE, visit

Follow Us