An Expats Comprehensive Relocation Guide: Oman
Officially the Sultanate of Oman, this Arab state holds a strategically important position at the mouth of the Persian Gulf. There are 12 different languages that are native to Omani citizens and it is an absolute monarchy, run by the Sultan of Oman. Whilst Oman does not have as many oil reserves as its rich neighbours it is categorised as a high-income economy and ranks at the 59th most peaceful country in the world. Many expatriates say that Oman is a culturally and financially rewarding country and much of the countries wealth is reinvested in infrastructure and very well managed. Let’s see how you can reap the benefits of this beautiful Gulf State.
The most common jobs for those seeking employment in Oman are found in the oil, gas, petroleum, education, medical and construction industries. Specific occupations in high demand include engineers, Information Technology specialists, project managers, teachers and English-language instructors. Another of the en vogue career opportunities found in Oman can be found in the auditing industry. The recent global economic downturn of half a decade ago has caused this spike of opportunities despite many economists believing we are over that curb.
Another of the great incentives for expats moving to Oman is that there is no personal or income tax levied against your salary each month. There are not even tax forms to be completed, and no returns to file with the Ministry of Finance. The only potential deduction from your Omani salary that could arise would be a 6 and a half per cent contribution to a social security fund for welfare benefits and old age pension. However, it is frequently seen that your employer will waive this obligation as well.
An employment visa for expatriates in Oman is only granted at the request of a local sponsor. The visa is valid for just three months from the date of issuance. However, the visa is valid for extension and multiple entries for a fee of 20 Oman Riyals. (click the image for visa information to all Arab nations). Required documents
- Original document of labor permit issued by the Ministry of Manpower
- Copy of approval of the concerned authority for specific professions e.g. education professionals, media professionals, medical professionals, etc.
- Original passport
- Two 4×6 cm photographs in colour
Similar to Qatar, to switch jobs, an expat must have a release letter from their former sponsor which has been duly approved by the Directorate General of Labor. An Employment Contracting Visa may be granted to an expatriate whose work requires undergoing primary tests by government bodies. This visa is further subject to the primary sponsor (employer) presenting approval from the government entity. Employment Contracting Visa to Oman is valid for use for two months from the date of issuance, and allows the expatriate a one-month stay from the date of entry.
Many of the living expenses are considerably cheaper than other gulf states that surround it. For example, in the capital, Muscat, a meal for two at an average, inexpensive restaurant would cost approximately $26 US Dollars. A one bedroom apartment in the city averages about USD $860 per month and a three bedroom apartment in the city center costs around USD $1,664 according to numbeo. Transportation costs are a great incentive to life in Oman as well. Compared to the West, fuel and vehicle costs are quite cheap in Oman, with a Volkswagen Golf 1.4 90 KW Trendline (Or Equivalent New Car) setting you back approximately USD $16,878. For many expats, purchasing your own automobile can be much more economical than using public transportation. Because taxis and buses are the only feasible form of transportation, purchasing a car is a prudent decision for those who want to visit rural areas or go camping, or are required to travel frequently for their professional duties.
Oman boosts a significant expat population. This consists mostly of British, American, Canadian, Australian, New Zealander and South African nationals. The vast majority of this population can be found in the capital, Muscat. This creates a perfect ‘community away from home’ for anyone who is a little unsure about relocating to this Gulf location. Many expat relocation packages include relocation costs and accommodation allowances, giving you the freedom to create a new home and settle in as quickly as possible. There are many shopping and entertainment facilities for people, including large shopping malls, restaurants, bars and clubs, not to mention the beautiful beaches, mountain hiking and swimming in the unspoilt wadis.
There are many career opportunities for professionals seeking a new career and way of life in Oman. Salaries are generally seen as being very good compared to other Gulf locations, and with low tax your money will definitely go a lot further. As mentioned above, relocation packages are fairly common ground, offering expatriates with housing allowances and their relocation expenses covered. If you would like more information about relocating to Oman or any of the gulf countries, upload your CV to our database and be assigned your own personal job hunt manager to assist you with your job search.