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Summer season is here!

It’s a spell where good times and tan lines go hand-in-hand. The happy sunshine makes us want to enjoy this period to the fullest without getting roasted. Here are some fun ideas on how you can spend your summer weekends in Dubai.

Laugh till your belly hurts

Want to sparkle like a splash of sunlight in water? Then you should laugh and dance as much as you breathe. Block your dates this weekend on 19 May’17 and attend the live comedy show “Y So Serious Nights” at The Music Room, Dubai. Or you can also visit The Laughter Factory, Middle East's longest-running comedy night, at Gramercy. Get ready to tickle your funny bone!

Escape into the magical world of music

Music has the mystical power to transform a usual boring day into a fabulous one. Get ready to groove on to the Punjabi Bhangra music explosion by famed brothers Daler Mehndi and Mika Singh at Zabeel Hall 6, Dubai World Trade Centre on 19 May’17. Or if you love singing karaoke, you can hop straight onto Hip Hop Karaoke Dubai Season closing party in Tribeca Dubai at the JA Ocean View Hotel in JBR on the same day. You can also chill with various music genres from rock to jazz, middle eastern to latino at the Music Hall in Jumeriah Zabeel Saray on The Palm, Jumeriah. Let music take you to places you dream of!

Fun ideas for summer in Dubai

Set sail and answer the waters calling

Has cruising been your dream for a while now? Then here is your opportunity to dip your toes into the cruising waters. Begin this summer, by sailing along Old Dubai with a 360-degree view of the Dubai Creek from a sleek, all-glass, Seine-designed Bateaux Dubai boat. Or you can choose the traditional wooden dhow to sail around the city from Dubai Creek and Dubai Marina. Now let your dreams set sail!

Go on exciting rides

Love rollercoaster rides, skiing and snowboarding? Then you must visit Ski Dubai, Middle East’s first indoor ski resort located at the Mall of the Emirates. Or you can visit IMG Worlds of Adventure, Dubai’s first mega themed entertainment destination that excites the visitors with epic adventure zones. This theme park is located next to Global Village, in the heart of Dubai. Doesn’t matter the age group you belong to, the above theme parks have something for everyone!

Cool yourself in the rain forest

Want to experience some cool rain forest greenery, this summer? Then visit the Green Planet at City Walk, Dubai. This bio-dome is home to several rain forest species. You can explore and interact with the exotic flora and fauna found here. What a cool place to spend your day at?

Remember, you can get tickets for all the above mentioned events and locations at UAE Exchange counters at Dubai Mall, Deira City Centre, Burjuman Station, Mall of Emirates (Metrolink), and Mirdif. Apart from these events, you can also spend time at various air conditioned malls, theatres, indoor activities and events in Dubai. Just take your multi-purpose prepaid card along, to avoid cash hassles.

Enjoy the great summer vibes!

Did you know that words are the most powerful force with latent, instant ability to destroy or build anything?

Even at our workplace, verbal communication is vital. It really doesn’t matter how accomplished you are, there are certain sentences that instantly plunge down your credibility and have a detrimental effect on your career. These lines may not be ruthless or wreckless. But the sheer helplessness hidden in these lines below will kill your career.

“Why should I help? It’s not part of my job description.”

If you don’t want to be perceived as a petty coward, then you should refrain from saying the above lines. Not only does it undermine your attitude, but it also portrays you as a rigid, non-team player. But if you feel you are really overexploited, then discuss the scenario with your boss to see whether your job description is updated. However you must also exercise some amount of flexibility and help out wherever you can, even if it does not come under your work purview.

“It’s not fair.”

If you don’t want to risk looking immature or naïve, then you should not utter the above line. Everyone knows life is not fair. Your boss is probably looking to see how you handle the unfair situation. So instead of stating the obvious, be constructive, analyse the circumstance and gently delve into how you can better the situation next time.

Ten things never say at work

 

“It’s his/her fault. Not mine.”

Even if it indeed was not your fault, it’s not a good idea to point out and blame. Offer a completely objective description of what happened to your higher ups. Be subtle, tactful and stick to the facts while indicating the errors done by the other employee. This will reinforce your credibility and accountability with your boss and colleagues. Also you will not be targeted for a strike back for any light error you might end up committing in future.

“This is the way it’s always been done.”

Every company or boss wants an employee who evolves and develops. People who say the above line are seen as ones who are lazy and resist change. They are perceived to be a threat to the growth of self and company. However if you have strong reasons to believe that the existing process is better, then present the facts to your boss in a convincing manner. Ensure you don’t sound obsolete.

“I hate my job.”

This is the worst thing you can say at work. From the moment those words blurted out of your mouth, consider your career ruined! Then on, your work will be considered as haphazard and unsatisfactory, even if you put your heart and soul in it. Since no one wants a pessimist on their team, your higher ups will be only waiting for the opportune moment to get rid of you. However if your really have concern or issues about your job, take it up as a healthy discussion with your boss. Remember that optimistic, passionate replacements are waiting just around the corner!

Hence, whenever you feel your work situation demands you to use the above phrases, use alternative lines tempered with tact and wisdom.

Enjoy your working experience and use words that only boost your career!

Imagine you’re walking into a supermarket for a pack of cookies. What are your odds of getting out of the store with just that? None.

Trust us, you are not the one to be blamed for this. The strategically placed wobbly signs, stickers, call outs and signboards begin playing their trick on your mind, the moment you enter the supermarket. These psychological games are sure to bust your family budget, anytime you enter and exit the shop.

So how do you fight the temptation, and save money while at a supermarket? Follow these simple tips.

Stick to your grocery list

This is one of the simplest ways, to not end up spending double or triple your budgeted amount on groceries. Prepare your shopping list at home and when you are in the supermarket, ensure you stick to the list. One easy method to come up with a thrifty grocery list is to craft a prudent weekly/monthly meal plan. Depending on the supplies needed for the meals, you can build the grocery list. If you are still tempted to make impulsive purchases, try reserving them for the next visit.

Be diligent about discounts and offers

Freebies, discounts and offers are key tricks supermarkets deploy to increase impulsive buying. Before tucking the bundled offers into your cart, ask yourself if you would have purchased them , if they weren’t on offer, and think about the actual price difference. It does no harm to use your calculator to estimate the price difference and spend a couple of minutes to analyse if it’s worth the buy. If you are still convinced about the purchase, then feel free to go ahead.

Supermarket Shopping

Shop with your tummy and ears full

Did you know that colourful fresh produce, appetizing bakery aroma and relaxing music are sensual stimulators that persuade you to shop more? They prompt you to dawdle around the aisle, eager to cart any food item that catches your eye. So to defy these temptations, you should always eat well before you head into the supermarket. This way you will be more stable, and buy only what’s necessary. Another economical move would be to go shopping alone with your earphones plugged onto loud, high tempo music, which will make you cruise through the aisles faster, thus saving time and money.

Use a prepaid card

One of the most effective ways to save money is to use a prepaid card to pay your bill. Since this isn’t a credit card, you do not have exorbitant fee/ interest rates associated with the payment. You can just use it like cash, but without the disadvantages of carrying hard cash around.

Now are you ready to shop the smart way?

Splashing cheerful hues of bright yellow sun, green palm trees, ocean breeze, chill drinks and perky children in your mind, summer is the most happening of all seasons. However the heat from the scorching sun often burns out your cheery spirit when you go outdoors. With so many fun activities on the bay, how can you just stay indoors all day?

Just follow our tips below, to make the most of this summer.

Cool the pulses

To avoid health problems such as heat exhaustion and stroke, it’s imperative to bring down your body temperature. This can be done by cooling the pulse points such as temples, inner wrists, inside bend of elbows, back of knees, inner thighs, ankles and feet. Place ice packs, cool compresses or cold water on these areas to chill your blood vessels and lower your body temperature instantly.

Drink plenty of fluids

It’s very important to stay hydrated with lots of water, fresh juices and coconut water this summer. Avoid alcohol, coffee and sugary sodas that actually dehydrates your body. Always carry a water bottle wherever you go. If you feel any sign of exhaustion, immediately gulp down a glass of cold water.

summer tips to beat heat

 

Dress to let your skin breathe

During summer, it’s imperative that your wear natural light coloured clothes. White and light coloured clothes reflect back the heat, but the dark coloured ones absorb the scorching sun’s wrath. Loose fitting clothes in natural fibres such as cotton or linen are the best way to ward off heat and enable good air circulation. These kinds of clothes let your skin breathe. Never forget to wear a hat or scarf to protect your head from the direct heat. Apply plenty of sunscreen to your skin atleast twenty minutes prior to heading out.

Treat yourself

There is nothing as delicious as a triple scoop ice cream, softy or a popsicle to make you drool during the summer season. With mouth- watering flavours ranging right from fruity, zesty sorbet to savoury gelato, children and adults rush for their frozen-treat fix.

Get cool splashes

Summer is the best season to indulge in aqua play, water slides, raft rides and much more at water amusement parks such as Dreamland, Wadi Adventure, Yas Waterworld etc. You can also beat the heat by lazing around the beach or indulging in water sports such as scuba diving, fly boarding and jet skiing along the coastline. Enjoy ice ski runs with parading penguins, toboggan slides on ice rinks, and several other cool activities to beat the heat.

Another easy way to escape the heat is to hang out in the air conditioned malls and do some shopping. Carry your prepaid multi-purpose card to avoid getting stressed over payment and cash hassles.

Now get ready for an amazing summer time!

Ever wondered why only some people are rich while the others are not? Here’s the reason.

Rich people make their money work hard for them, while the others just keep working hard for their money. This mismanagement of income does not allow the commoners to build any wealth. Just like the game of snake and ladder, they earn money on a ladder and lose it all down the snake’s throat.

Now remember this secret formula!

Well diversified investments + Small savings + Time = Wealth

To stay financially fit and build your wealth from there, you need to implement the following effective investment strategies.

Direct discretionary spending into investments

This strategy applies to those who complain of not having enough to begin investing. Remember that you do not need piles of cash to start your investment process. Just cut down on the non-essential luxuries and you’ll be surprised on how much excess money you are left with.

Craft a spending plan

Creating a spending plan is all about building financial discipline and facilitating better spending habits. Giving you a sense of control and purpose, this plan helps you proactively compare and contrast your expense options.

Begin investing today

Time is a key factor involved in creating wealth. You need to give your money enough time to roll and start multiplying. Hence it’s always better to start investing as early as possible. Remember that the power of compounding increases when you stay invested on a long term basis.

Strategies to get rich

Don’t let your emergency stash be idle

You should have a crisis cash reserve that is safe, reliable and accessible in case of any emergencies. A simple rule of the thumb states that atleast 6 month worth expenses should be kept aside as emergency reserve cash. However to ensure that the stash doesn’t stay idle you can invest them in the high liquidity financial instruments such as bank savings account or the money market (get the help of a financial planner!).

Diversify your investments

“Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket…” That is the most underrated, yet overused line, especially in an investment context. To reduce risk factors, you need to invest across a range of financial instruments such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, private equity and other asset categories. Diversifying your portfolio is more an art than science. You need to take several factors such as your age, income stream and risk tolerance into consideration. However ensure that stocks form the cornerstone of your portfolio to maintain an optimum risk reward ratio.

Separate emotions from investment objectives

An old Wall Street adage goes like this. “Bulls make money. Bears make money. Pigs get slaughtered.”! Pigs refer to the emotional, impatient investors who take the market ups and downs personally. It’s impossible to buy low and sell high if you do not have a rational structure around your trading process.

Write down your financial objectives, think long-term and refrain from making rash buying and selling decisions. Or you can hire wealth management experts to ease out the entire process of making your money work for you.

Good luck with your investments!

Summer has just arrived! Yes, atleast in some parts of the world. Hence it’s high time you enjoy some amazing hiking adventures.  Whether you are navigating canyons, or climbing mountains or even crossing dangerous terrains, as a hiker, you are experiencing the beauty of nature like no one else.  

If you are a seasoned hiker, then you probably have a list of hikes you are ready to check out. But if you are not, then our list of the 5 best hikes is what you should begin with.   

1. Inca Trail

Where: Peru

Distance: 26 miles

Best Time: May to September

Taking you through spectacular jungles, ancient ruins, and mountain paths, this Inca trail ends at Machu Picchu. This awe-inspiring hike consists of three overlapping trails: Mollepata, Classic and One Day.  Definitely one of the most popular trails from around the world, be prepared to meet a lot of fellow hikers here.

2. Appalachian Trail

Where: United States

Distance: 2,180 miles

Best Time: Year-round

The Appalachian Trail runs from Springer Mountain, Georgia to Mount Katahdin, Maine and passes through 14 states of the USA.  Home to thousands of fauna and flora, this hiking trail is for the adventurous and daring.  It’s a true test to the hiker’s mettle.

5 best hikes in world

3. Petra Trek

Where: Jordan

Distance: 50 miles

Best Time: October to April

One of the best, famous hikes of the Middle East, the Petra trek takes the hiker through rough terrains, canyons and gorges, and ends with a tour of the breathtakingly beautiful ancient temples and ruins of Petra. 

4. Everest Base Camp Trek

Where: Nepal

Distance: 70 miles

Best Time: March to May, September to November

Everest is every hikers dream destination and this trail lets you come face-to-face with this mighty giant. It reaches a dizzying height of 5,545 meters and takes about three weeks to complete.  Hikers also get to interact with the locals on this trail and experience their culture first-hand.

5. Kilimanjaro Trek

Where: Africa

Distance: 35 miles

Best Time: January, February or September

Located in Tanzania, Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest peak. However, it is relatively easy to climb this mountain! There are many climbing routes available and each one of them offers hikers the chance to soak in the beauty while traversing the rugged terrains.

If you are an avid hiker, then you already know the ropes of organising a trek, however, if you are new to this then don’t forget to ask for help before embarking on a hike. Make sure you start small and familiarise yourself with the trail before trying to conquer it. Get a travel card which can come handy during your travel and ensure you check all your gears thoroughly before starting your trek. 

Bon Voyage!

 

Summer has just arrived! Yes, atleast in some parts of the world. Hence it’s high time you enjoy some amazing hiking adventures.  Whether you are navigating canyons, or climbing mountains or even crossing dangerous terrains, as a hiker, you are experiencing the beauty of nature like no one else. 

If you are a seasoned hiker, then you probably have a list of hikes you are ready to check out. But if you are not, then our list of the 5 best hikes is what you should begin with.  

1.       Inca Trail

Where: Peru
Distance: 26 miles
Best Time: May to September

Taking you through spectacular jungles, ancient ruins, and mountain paths, this Inca trail ends at Machu Picchu. This awe-inspiring hike consists of three overlapping trails: Mollepata, Classic and One Day.  Definitely one of the most popular trails from around the world, be prepared to meet a lot of fellow hikers here.

2.       Appalachian Trail
Where: United States
Distance: 2,180 miles
Best Time: Year-round

The Appalachian Trail runs from Springer Mountain, Georgia to Mount Katahdin, Maine and passes through 14 states of the USA.  Home to thousands of fauna and flora, this hiking trail is for the adventurous and daring.  It’s a true test to the hiker’s mettle.

3.       Petra Trek
Where: Jordan
Distance: 50 miles
Best Time: October to April

One of the best, famous hikes of the Middle East, the Petra trek takes the hiker through rough terrains, canyons and gorges, and ends with a tour of the breathtakingly beautiful ancient temples and ruins of Petra.

4.       Everest Base Camp Trek
Where: Nepal
Distance: 70 miles
Best Time: March to May, September to November

Everest is every hikers dream destination and this trail lets you come face-to-face with this mighty giant. It reaches a dizzying height of 5,545 meters and takes about three weeks to complete.  Hikers also get to interact with the locals on this trail and experience their culture first-hand.

5.       Kilimanjaro Trek
Where: Africa
Distance: 35 miles
Best Time: January, February or September

Located in Tanzania, Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest peak. However, it is relatively easy to climb this mountain! There are many climbing routes available and each one of them offers hikers the chance to soak in the beauty while traversing the rugged terrains.

If you are an avid hiker, then you already know the ropes of organising a trek, however, if you are new to this then don’t forget to ask for help before embarking on a hike. Make sure you start small and familiarise yourself with the trail before trying to conquer it. Get a travel card which can come handy during your travel and ensure you check all your gears thoroughly before starting your trek.

Bon Voyage!

Don’t you love the extensive, well developed roads in the UAE?

The scenic trips make every journey more beautiful than the destination! Most of them are multilane motorways, capable of catering to the high number of vehicles plying on the UAE roads.

To ensure road safety, residents and expats need to adhere to traffic laws. Or high fines will be levied. Recently there were a few amendments made to the traffic rules, focused on the expat community.

Here are the new traffic laws.

Stop 5 meters away: All vehicles should stop at a minimum distance of 5 meters away from public transport vehicles and school buses. This will apply when the vehicles stop to disembark or embark passengers.

Renew license with 5 year validity: All new licenses will expire within two years of being issued. Renewed licenses will be valid for 10 years for citizens and 5 years for expats.

Expats Driving Licence

Get health certificate for new license: For new licenses, applicants need to be certified by competent health facilities to ensure they do not have any diseases which will impede their driving ability. They need to also pass the driving tests and pay the fee required.

Protectively strap your children while driving: Children over the age of 10 years or 145 cm in height can sit in the front seat of cars, and children below the age of four needs to be strapped to protective seats.

Don’t cross the bus routes: Specific bus routes will be allocated and every bus will be assigned a route and time. Other vehicles may not pass on these routes assigned to the buses, except civil defense, ambulance, rescue and police vehicles in the course of duty.

Maintain the designated speed: Drivers passing by residential areas, hospitals or educational institutions need to take utmost care in maintaining their speeds so as to not cause disturbances.

Remember that no one is permitted to drive a motorised two or three wheelers unless they are registered and licensed by the licensing authorities. The UAE also has a strict zero-tolerance policy towards driving while intoxicated. Drunken driving is a criminal offence.

With these amendments in mind, get your driver’s license and enjoy your road trips.

Did you know that Thailand is one of the most preferred retirement destinations?

This land of smiles does not fail to put a broad smile on the faces of older people looking for a laid back relaxed lifestyle to settle in. Further with a lower cost of living, soulful food, warm climate, and easy access to retirement visa, Thailand nudges older people in its direction.

Retiring in Thailand

However, here are six things you should know before moving to Thailand.

  1. Comfortable life within limited income: The cost of living in Thailand is considerably low when compared to European or American countries. Purchasing a house or even renting a house is inexpensive here and all household utilities, food, transportation etc. are extremely affordable. Retirees can live a comfortable life here within a limited income.
  2. Scenic and warm: Thailand is all about scenic beaches and warm weather. If you’ve been shoveling snow all your life, then lying down on a beach chair, soaking up the sun and sipping a cool drink is exactly what you need. It will take some time though to get used to the warmth and humidity.
  3. Excellent healthcare: Healthcare facilities in Thailand are excellent and hospitals are well equipped to handle emergencies. Ensure you carry your international health insurance to avail the best of healthcare.
  4. Visa requirements: Retiring to Thailand will need you to meet the visa requirements which are :
    1. Applicants must 50 years and above.
    2. Must not have a criminal record.
    3. Must have not been denied visa previously to the country.
    4. Must possess a bank balance of 800,000 Thai Baht which is (about 25,000 USD) or a monthly income of 65,000 Thai Baht (about 2,000 USD) or savings and annual income combined, which then comes to a minimum of 800,000 Thai Baht.
  5. These retirement visas are good for one year and can be renewed without leaving the country.

  6. Smiles and Sunshine: Thais are warm, welcoming people and everyone smiles at everyone. so if you find that bothersome, then start getting used to it.
  7. Mai Pen Rai: Loosely translated, Mai Pen Rai means ‘No worries, don’t sweat it, everything’s fine, no problem…”. Mai Pen Rai summarises the Thai philosophy on life. Thais are extremely laid-back people, so if you are planning on retiring in Thailand, you need to adopt the Mai Pen Rai lifestyle or else you may end up feeling frustrated with the slow pace.

After retirement, your income may decrease. Hence it is very important to start investing and building your wealth while you are still earning.

Now, cheers to a happy retired life!

Wondering whether or not to attend your friend’s wedding abroad?

Well you must! Weddings around the globe are filled with wonderful traditions and customs. Many countries have peculiar, borderline bizarre wedding traditions, which are endearing and romantic.

Here’s a peek into some unique wedding traditions from around the world.

Korea
In Korea, the grooms were supposed to give their future mother-in-laws wild ducks or geese. This was a representation of the groom’s pure intention and loyalty to the bride. Times have changed, and now they offer wooden geese or ducks.

Scotland
In Scotland, on the day before the wedding, the bride and the groom are taken out and covered in treacle, ash, feathers and flour by friends and family. Tradition says by doing so, the bride and the groom is kept safe from evil spirits.

Wedding Traditions Around the World

Congo
Weddings are a serious business in Congo, which is why both the bride and the groom cannot smile or laugh during the entire ceremony! Right from the wedding to the reception, they must refrain from smiling, because if they do, it would mean, they are not taking the wedding seriously!

Germany
The couple that works together stays happy together. In Germany, brides and grooms clean up piles of shattered porcelain dishes which are broken and strewn in front of their homes by family and friends. This is to show that if the couple works together, they can handle any challenges life throws at them.

Turkey
On the day of the wedding, the groom’s friends plant the Turkish flag in the ground at his home. Depending on the area, various objects such as mirrors or even fruits and vegetables are placed on top of the flag, to signify that the wedding has begun.

Romania
Wedding guests work together to ‘kidnap’ the bride from the wedding and demand a ransom from the groom. These ransoms could be anything ranging from malt to singing a song for his bride in front of the entire family.

Venezuela
It is considered good luck for the newlyweds to sneak out of the wedding party before it gets over without anyone noticing them; it is also considered good luck for the guest who catches on after the runaway!

Although weddings are pretty exhausting, they are always fun and enjoyable. It’s more fun to participate in weddings than just reading about them.
So, the next time you are invited to a wedding in a different country, don’t hesitate to go!

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