UAE Behaviour – 8 People Not to Be

Tailgating, flashing lights (even in daylight too!) Photo credit:

I love living here in the Abu Dhabi – but there are some things about behaviour here that bamboozle me. As they say – it takes all sorts to make a world, but here I appeal to you – please, don’t be that person. Which person? This person:

1. Don’t drive up behind people tailgating them and flashing your lights to signal to them to move over. Just because you’ve seen a local do it, it doesn’t make it ok. They say when in Rome, do as the Romans do – but there are exceptions. Nobody likes an obnoxious Roman.

Tailgating, flashing lights (even in daylight too!) Photo credit:
Tailgating, flashing lights (even in daylight too!) Photo credit: blog lease trader

2. Absolutely don’t be the person that drives up behind someone tailgating them and flashing your lights to get them to move over, then as soon as they do move, you slow down. What’s that about? You either want to overtake or you don’t. Make your mind up and get on with it. Preferably without the obnoxious behaviour next time please.

3. Don’t put those little soft door protector things on your car doors. Here’s a thought – maybe just be more careful when you open your doors and think before you fling them into the car next to you instead. Those little protector things don’t make it better. They just advertise the fact that you’re a thoughtless person that I don’t want to park anywhere near. Oh, and in case you hadn’t noticed, they look really ugly too.

Foam car door protectors. Photo credit:
Foam car door protectors. Photo credit: AliExpress

4. Don’t block up the aisles of the car park by waiting  for a space by the door of the mall. Stop being so lazy and go and find a park elsewhere. Our malls here in the UAE may be big, but they’re not so big that the walk will kill you. If you’re going to walk round the mall, even in the summer you can cope with the warm walk from the car to the mall entrance.

5. Definitely don’t park in the disabled space by the door unless you are actually disabled. It strikes me that there appears to be an awful lot of disabled people who drive supercars in the UAE… hmmm.

6. If you’re an expat over here, don’t keep converting Dirhams back to your home currency. Once you’re working here and earning Dirhams you need to get yourself a new benchmark. Dirhams and your home currency are not the same! Some things will sound expensive when converted back and some things will sound cheap… things cost what they cost here so try to get used to it. You can’t compare apples with oranges.

7. And what is it with the people who drive around in very expensive brand spanking new cars with the plastic still on the seats? It’s just weird. And it must be hot and uncomfortable in the summer. If you can afford a nice new high end car, you can afford to take the plastic off the seats, no? And if it’s because you’re planning on upgrading to the next best thing in a short space of time, why wouldn’t you just buy seat covers if you’re that worried about preserving the newness? It’s clearly not that money is an issue.

8. Don’t be that person that drinks and drives. It’s sad that this is even a point I need to make, but you’d be amazed how many people do it and think it’s ok. What’s even more amazing is the amount of expats that do it which I find very confusing. It’s just not socially acceptable at home so I’m not sure why they suddenly think it is here. If you hadn’t noticed, there’s a zero tolerance policy here. Just because it’s legal to have one and drive at home, it doesn’t make it ok here. It’s illegal, and if you get caught you WILL go to jail. There’s just no excuse for it – taxis are so cheap and freely available here.

So that’s my top peeves for eight people not to be. What do you think? Do you have anything to add that I’ve missed? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.



  • Gulp! I’m soooo guilty of #6. After I get my calculator out and convert the price here to dollars, I sometimes then check out Amazon to torture myself with how cheap it is in the US. It’s bad… I know. I have one (this happened this week): Don’t be the person who stops at the front of the grocery store after shopping to call your driver, who then parks in front of the store with hazards on, blocking anyone from driving through, until he loads your bags. Ugh! I think it must have taken longer for her to wait on the driver to pull around than it would have taken her to walk to the car.

    • Checking amazon is one thing – I did that on a couple of things I wanted for the house when I first moved here – if I know it’s going to be cheaper to get it sent from overseas than to buy it here for example (even adding in the postage too), but it’s when people do it on every little thing, all the time it becomes crazy (and pointless).
      And yes, the grocery shopping example is a good one to add – don’t be that person either people! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • never smiled and laughed so much on a Sunday evening!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ thank you. blooming marvelous … well done!

  • Good observations Lindsey – made me feel I am not such an inconsiderate driver after all – despite what my passengers say! ๐Ÿ™‚ My pet hate – people who think it is ok to be rude to people in the service industry – taxi drivers, waiters, waitresses, beauticians, etc etc etc. Disrespect and disdain is ugly and speaks volumes about person displaying these traits. I will jump off my soap box now. S

    • Thanks for your thoughts and comments Shirley! Yes, that’s another good one about being rude to service people – there’s just no need indeed. Or even in being rude full stop really!

  • For number 3, those things come on new cars, pre-fitted. Most people just don’t want to hurt their new toy

    • Oh I didn’t know that, thanks! Our car didn’t come with them though?! And it still doesn’t explain why you see them on cars that are ancient relics!

  • Garr people that have been here over a year and STILL convert to pounds, even though they’re earning in DHS!? WHY?? Haha.
    Love this!

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