Dare to dream of a life under the UAE sun but the thought of Arabic lessons has your tongue tied?

Don’t worry!

The UAE, a burgeoning global business powerhouse, attracts throngs of expats, much like yourself, seeking greener pastures in education and career.

Yet, the Arabic language, as beautiful and rich as it is, can seem like a towering sand dune to climb.

It’s on every sign, every form, every local’s lips, and it’s easy to wonder: can you truly succeed here without mastering it?

Stick around as we unravel the reality of language barriers in the UAE’s corporate and daily life!

Are There Jobs In The UAE For People Who Don’t Speak Arabic 

Yes, there are many jobs for people who do not speak Arabic.

Command over the Arabic language comes with a lot of practice, and the language is not easy at all.

Therefore you would be relieved to know that most jobs in the UAE do not require you to be fluent in Arabic!

However, your English should really be good. Even though Arabic is the official language, the official business language is English

Instead of learning Arabic, we will urge you to master your spoken English if you really want to climb the corporate ladder.

On another note, there is a substantial migrant population of expat workers in the UAE.

Almost 90% of the population of the UAE are expat workers. Therefore, if you are not of the subcontinental region, you might need to polish up your skills in the Urdu and Hindi languages.

The UAE has vast populations of people from Pakistan and India, among other countries looking for jobs. 

If you plan to do some odd jobs in the UAE or work a job where you might need to interact with the locals, we will urge you to learn a little bit of Urdu and Hindi.

Of course, English goes a long way, so you can always communicate in it. 

Moreover, there are signs all over the UAE, which are written in Arabic as well as English, so you need not worry about applying for jobs in the UAE and your everyday life.

Arabic is not mandatory to live your life in the UAE and earn money!

Are There Jobs Where It Is Mandatory To Learn Arabic

As we discussed earlier, speaking Arabic is not required for most jobs in the UAE. Actually, on the contrary, you are more required to be fluent in English as it is the official business language.

However, there are some job posts and sectors where there is a high demand for Arabic speakers, such as the banking sector and some government posts. This is because these jobs require a lot of communication, and all of it has to be done in the gulf country’s official language, Arabic. 

However, no one can deny that learning or speaking the official language in UAE won’t be a huge plus point.

Arabs like to show respect and expect respect in return, hence if you learn their language and communicate with them in their mother tongue, they really appreciate it, and that might help form a strong bond in many corporate environments. 

Also, there are other job sectors, where you will benefit immensely if you learn Arabic.

They are Customer Service, Real Estate, Legal Help, Hospitality and Healthcare where Arabs are the first customers, hence learning the language will be a very massive plus on your resume and might help you land a lot of jobs!

Moreover, most firms in the UAE are foreign firms who are working in collaboration with local Emirati partners to bring jobs and generate revenue to the gulf country.

Hence, the term bilingual proficiency is something that is very common these days and is an added plus.

This term is used more and more in job opportunity ads and other platforms. Hence it won’t hurt to learn some basic Arabic to communicate with the Arabs!

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What Are The Benefits To Expats Learning Arabic

Better Understanding Of Culture

Anywhere you go in the world, that place will have its own traditions and heritage.

This is the same case in the UAE. Arabs have distinct traditions and traditional values.

If you plan to live in the UAE for a more extended period and want to spend your life amongst the locals and get the most out of your time, it is vital for you to learn their language so that you can easily communicate with them and blend in. 

Speaking Arabic really is an ice breaker, and you will be given a lot more respect from the Arabs; you must remember that recieving and giving respect is very important to the Arabs.

As an expat, having good relations with the locals is in your best interests. This may open the door to other opportunities as well.

The UAE has a rich culture, and the only way you will truly understand it is through its language, values, culture, and traditions!

Strong Bond With Native Speakers

This point is significant and is often overlooked. As an expat, you will interact with a lot of Arabs in your personal and professional life. The biggest dilemma is that Arabs are friendly people.

However, the language barrier often limits expats from talking to them, and there is a gap that forms between these two communities that hamper progress and prosperity. 

We, humans, are social creatures, and we need to interact with each other and remain together for growth.

Therefore, if you want to make the most out of your personal and professional bonds with Arabs, you will have to learn the language to communicate in a better way and break the ice between the two communities.

Breaking the ice can be best done by speaking Arabic!

You will see that if you speak their language, they will grow much warmer toward you!

Learning a common language will allow you to voice your concerns and ideas in a more understanding manner, so the frustration of not being understood will not be something to worry about. 

Moreover, the most important thing to know is that communication skills come before everything in every aspect of your professional and personal life. To polish those skills, you need to learn Arabic. 

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More Jobs

This one goes without saying that the most important reason to learn Arabic is to get that edge when looking for jobs. 

Most jobs in the UAE do not require you to learn Arabic since they understand that over 80-90% of the population are expats who will apply to these jobs, which means that a language-mandatory job opportunity will really limit job applications and will not allow good potential to rise to the job. 

This is the way you get away with never speaking Arabic in the UAE.

However, there is a big if attached to this!

In order to climb the corporate ladder and build professional interpersonal relationships with the Arabs, you will have to learn to speak their language, as they regard it as a sign of high respect and worthiness.

These two traits will get you far in your corporate life! 

Moreover, there are some job sectors like banking sectors and government jobs where speaking the language is mandatory since there is regular communication with the locals. Hence, you should learn the language to increase your job prospects. 

Staying Out Of Trouble

Most local Arabs are not fluent in English, so learning Arabic will make things easier for you daily.

You should understand basic terms used in Arabic in real estate, for example.

This will help you a lot when you go negotiate with the bank about your mortgage or discuss something with the real estate agent. Learning short phrases and essential keywords will help you not miss vital information on different platforms. 

Hence, if you know the language and can communicate in it, it will help avoid trouble later! 

Not Dependent On Google Translate 

Google translate is no doubt a beneficial agent in helping you interact with an unfamiliar environment. However, it also makes sure that you get too comfortable and prevents any actual growth. 

You will depend on google translate for everything, from reading newspaper headlines, reading directions, ordering from an Arabic menu, or arguing the fare from taxi drivers! 

Hence, we urge you to learn the language and communicate through it if you want to erase any dependency on apps and live like a native speaker!

Moreover, most websites are written in Arabic, and there are English versions available, but some crucial information might be lost in the translation. Hence, it would be in your best interest to learn the language! 


To wrap up, Arabic, one of the world’s most ancient and diverse languages, might seem daunting, but its mastery isn’t a prerequisite for success in the UAE.

While learning it can certainly open new doors and deepen your understanding of the local culture, the UAE’s cosmopolitan business landscape is accommodating even for those without an Arabic vocabulary.

So, if you’re contemplating a move, don’t let language fears hold you back.

The UAE has room for everyone!