Monday, 7 July 2008


11 Years ago - give or take a month - I arrived in the United Arab Emirates. I went to live in Ras Al Khaimah, a little industrial town in the north of the country. A town not entirely unlike Bolton, but with sunshine!

About a year later, I decided that I really ought to stop driving on my British licence and get an Emirati driving licence. So I did. It wasn't a big deal, I had just been too lazy to actually go and get it.

Another year passed and I moved to Dubai, where I have lived and worked ever since.

My driving licence has now expired and I have not got any less lazy... It expired about two weeks ago and, eventually, yesterday I went to the Roads, Trains and Automobiles shop to get a replacement.

So, I walked in, the very helpful young man looked at me (which I took to mean "Good morning, sir, may I help you").

"I'd like to renew my driving licence please".

He held out is hand presumably to take the licence - this guy has definitely not been to charm school.

"This is Ras Al Khaimah licence", he said giving it back to me.

"Yes," said I, "and I'd like to renew it with a Dubai one please".

"You renew this in Ras Al Khaimah."

"But I don't live there, I live here, in Dubai and have done for 9 years."

"You renew this in Ras Al Khaimah."


"You have Dubai residency?"

"Yes." Ahh, now we are getting somewhere, the guy is going to try and be helpful.

"You need no objections letter to transfer your licence to Dubai."

"OK, no problem, where do I get this no objections letter from?"

"Ras Al Khaimah!"

"Thanks, bye."

I wonder how long I can get away with driving without a licence?

There are times when I think Dis-united should be the first word in this country's name!


CaliforniaKat said...

Super! Yeesh. I keep thinking that all of this is training for your time in GR.

dubaibilly said...

Oh thanks, Kat! I suppose that beaurocracy will be what it is wherever we go. Ah well, c'st la vie.

john.g. said...

Sounds about right. A couple of my mates worked in Abu Dhabi for years
in the 70/80's.

Thanks for the visit!