Dubai: Average Salary (Costs, Comparison, Minimum Wage)

  • Publish date: Wednesday، 27 July 2022 Last update: Sunday، 07 August 2022

Dubai, which is famous for its multiple skyscrapers, has always been a dream for many to work and settle in, especially as it is a city with a booming business economy in various fields. Here is this article to learn about the average salary in Dubai, minimum wage, cost of living, and everything that matters to you if you are thinking of working in this booming city

The Average Salary in Dubai

In 2021, the average salary in Dubai was about AED 21,500 per month, which is equivalent to $ 5,853.54 US, according to the exchange rates at the time. To be further clarified, this means that half of Dubai residents earn less than AED 21,500 while the other half earn more than AED 21,500.

As for the salary range in Dubai, they are very good starting at AED 4,810 ($1,309.56) and going up to AED 99,000 ($26,953.44) per month.

In light of this, we also mention the average annual salary increment in Dubai, which is an important component of any salary structure around the world. The average salary increase in the UAE is 8% every 17 months compared to the global average of 3% every 16 months.

As for the minimum wage in Dubai, it is worth noting that the UAE Federal Labor Law does not contain provisions regarding the minimum wage. This means that Dubai does not have a fixed base salary for employees. However, in 2013, the Ministry of Labor in the UAE approved the minimum wage for certain categories of employees, but it does not apply to all employees in Dubai, so we cannot put in your hands fixed numbers for the minimum wage in Dubai.

Salary Comparison by Education in Dubai

As it is known that higher education levels and academic certificates lead to a better salary package, below we look at the difference in the income of employees with the same work experience but with different levels of education in Dubai:

  • Employees with a diploma earn 17% more than their peers who have just finished high school.
  • Employees with a bachelor's degree earn 24% more than employees with a diploma.
  • Professionals with a master's degree earn 29% more than those with a bachelor's degree.
  • Ph.D. holders earn the highest salary with over 23% of master's degree holders.

Salary Comparison by Experience in Dubai

Just like education, experience plays an important role in determining the salary for each person. Here is a breakdown of how salaries can increase as work experience increases in Dubai:

  • 2-5 years - 32% more than juniors
  • 5-10 years - 36% more than professionals with less than 5 years of experience
  • 10-15 years - 21% more than professionals with less than 10 years of experience
  • 15-20 years- 14% more than professionals with less than 15 years of experience
  • Over 20 years - 9% more than professionals with less than 20 years of experience

Employee Benefits in Dubai

To compensate for the lack of a fixed minimum wage, the UAE labor law requires employers in Dubai to provide their employees with certain benefits, and below we take a detailed overview of them:

  1. Paid Leave: Employees are granted 21 days of paid annual leave for the first year and 30 days thereafter.
  2. Travel Expenses: All employees are guaranteed a return trip to their home country when the employment contract is completed.
  3. Medical Insurance: Employees are given medical insurance once they complete the probationary period.
  4. Gratuity: Employees are given end-of-service indemnities after completing the terms of their contract so that the compensation does not exceed the equivalent of the employee’s salary for 24 months.

Cost of Living in Dubai

The cost of living refers to the amount of money you need to cover basic housing, education, transportation, and health care. The cost of living in an area affects the average wage employees earn in that location. Below we take a look at the costs of the most important items and needs in Dubai:


Dubai property costs depend on the area, and generally, the monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city center is around AED 5,528.59 (US$ 1,505.16) and AED 3,687.32 (US$ 1,003.87) outside the city center.


Dubai provides both public and private schools. For government schools, their fees are a maximum of AED 6,000 ($1,633.50) per year. It is reported that education is more expensive for expats than for Emiratis.


Dubai has a thriving public transport system that offers several options. As for the cost, a taxi costs AED 2.44 (US$0.66) per kilometer, while a bus ticket costs AED 5 (US$1.36).


Local residents in Dubai are subject to the government-funded medical insurance system, while expatriates must have a private health insurance system in accordance with the legislation issued by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA).

Income Tax

The UAE is a popular “tax haven” as the government does not levy income tax on individuals. It also offers tax-free investment options for all residents of Dubai, that’s why it is an ideal place to work and settle.

Now that you know all the information about salaries and living costs in Dubai, do you still want to work there?

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