Monday, 6 August 2007


Teleporting - when's it gonna happen? How can I invest? How can we make it happen sooner? Long haul travelling ... well frankly, it largely sucks (not that there are any complaints about the staff or service).

We arrived in Al Ain at 3am this morning and were hit with a burst of 37 degree heat as soon as we walked out of the airport. Amusing! We were escorted through passport control and the visa process went through quite easily, though I did feel some guilt at the queue jumping. Scores of people were waiting and we were taken the front of the queue each time.

I've only been here a few hours, but what has struck me so far is the number of staff involved in each service. For example we had brekky at the hotel this morning and each time a plate was emptied or we finished a cup of coffee, someone was at our side offering us more (it was a fixed price smorgasbord, so there was no finanicial incentive for the service). There seem to be scores of staff at the hotel sweeping leaves and sand from paths, polishing floors and doing various jobs. This could take some getting used to.

I'm not sure about the tipping situation. The hotel staff don't seem to expect it, so I haven't given anything. I'd have no idea how much to tip anyway. A website I just checked out said that 2 - 5dhs was a good tip. I'm not sure though and would be interested to hear from others on this.

Oh, and the other point to mention (again) ... it's a bit hot outside!


Humairah Irfan said...

Ah good.. you just missed one of the windiest days in Al Ain yesterday.
Well, here's a virtual welcome!
Also when you go grocery shopping, there's always a staff who puts your things into the bags, and they'll even drive the shopping cart (trolley.. not sure what they call it in Australia) to your car, and put the things in for you. Gift wrapping is free... and so is food delivery. Although, some things are changing..

Hey, you guys need a tour around the city? Drop me a note if you do :)

elle said...

Welcome to the UAE. It sounds like you are having fun and games. It keeps you on your toes and will give you something to talk about. Nothing is done in a rush, everything takes time. And why do a job alone when people can watch you. Everyone has their designated jobs. The driver is just that the driver, he won't help the man changing the lightbulb but he will watch him. Stange! Anyway I'm sure you will be happy in Al Ain. As for tipping the amount is about right. but do what makes you happy. Wishin you all the best....