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10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

  • Publish date: Monday، 13 November 2023
10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

If you're planning to take the leap and move to Bahrain, a post-oil economy, you're in for an exciting and life-changing experience. Life in Bahrain is quite different compared to North America, Latin America, Europe, and other parts of Asia, so before you move ahead with your long-distance moving plans, here's what you should know about living there.

Bahrain is home to over 1.4 million people, with expats comprising more than half of the population. Indians, mostly holding blue-collar jobs, make up the largest expat group in the country.

Here is a list of 10 things you should know before moving to Bahrain:

Climate

The climate of Bahrain is desert, mild in winter and very hot in summer.
There are two main seasons: a cooler season from December to February and a hot season from April to October. March and November are transitional months, warm but without excesses.

The rains are scarce and occur mostly from December to April, yet they are irregular, and occasionally, there can be intense rainfall.

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

Cost of Living

The cost of living in this country is considered to be the lowest among the Gulf Cooperation Council members.

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

Culture & Dress Code

Bahrain is a Muslim country and a conservative society. Foreigners are advised to observe modesty and other important customs while in the country. 

The local women don a long colorful material called Jalabiya and a black gown known as Abbaya, while men wear a long white garment called Thouwb and a small cap with a white striped cloth called the Ghittrah and Ougall.

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

Language

Arabic reigns supreme as the official language, but English is a secondary language that is taught in all schools. However, knowing some basic Arabic phrases not only earns you brownie points with locals but can also help in daily errands and bargaining in traditional marketplaces.

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

Alcohol Consumption

Bahrain is a liberal country compared with most others in the region, hence, Alcohol is legal in the country with a number of bars, licensed restaurants, and off-licenses.

However, drunken behavior in public or driving under the influence of alcohol is against the law. Physical assault and damaging public property under the influence of alcohol is an offence, which may lead to a prison sentence.

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

Weekends

Bahrain's weekends run on Friday and Saturday, with Friday being the holy day. However, some businesses operate on Saturday.

Vacations

Bahrain observes a number of Islamic and national holidays. When a holiday falls on the weekend, the next weekday may be considered a non-working holiday in the public sector. Here is a list of the public holidays in Bahrain:

  • New Year's Day
  • Labour Day
  • Eid Al Fitr
  • Eid Al-Adha
  • Hijri New Year (Islamic New Year)
  • Ashoora
  • Birthday of Prophet Muhammad
  • National Day Holiday

Transport

Bahrain has a well-developed transportation infrastructure, including modern highways, airports, and public transportation systems. Depending on your location, you may choose to drive, use public transportation, or rely on ride-hailing services.

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain 

Housing

Picking the right neighborhood in Bahrain is very important. You should consider proximity to work, schools, and amenities like marketplaces, hospitals, etc. You can ask fellow expats or colleagues for more suitable advice. 

Expats are not allowed to own property in Bahrain. However, the country offers a wide range of apartments and villas for rental purposes.

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

Visas & Documentation

Foreigners from other GCC countries are free to visit Bahrain without any visa. Otherwise, you would need to apply for a visa based on the purpose of your visit.

To work in Bahrain, you need a work visa, usually sponsored by your employer. It's illegal to work on a tourist or visit visa. Ensure that your employer processes your employment visa before you start.

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Bahrain

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