Frequently Asked Questions about Bahrain
Is there an expat community in Bahrain?
Absolutely. Bahrain is one of the most popular expat destinations in the Middle East, with a significant portion of the population being expats.
Do I need a car in Bahrain?
Expats will certainly need a car in Bahrain. Public transportation is not very reliable and private taxis can make getting from point A to point B expensive. Even if you live in the city centre, summer temperatures skyrocket and intense humidity can make for damp clothes and can quickly put a damper on one's mood.
There are plenty of opportunities to both lease and buy a car in Bahrain. Insurance is cheap, petrol is inexpensive and the vehicles themselves are generally reasonably priced. In many cases, expats are able to afford cars that they would never dream of driving in their home country.
Do woman in Bahrain need to cover up?
Though Bahrain is a Muslim nation, modernity and liberalism have been much more integrated into society than in neighbouring countries like Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
Expat women dress in western clothes in public spaces, and generally speaking, what is appropriate in western countries is probably appropriate in Bahrain. Mosques are the only places where strict principles apply; women must wear an abaya and men must wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts.
Will I have to partake in Ramadan?
No, but eating or drinking in public is not allowed during Ramadan. It is also considered disrespectful to eat or drink in front of Muslim colleagues or friends who are fasting. Many workplaces, particularly multinational companies that employ lots of expats, will have a dedicated room for non-Muslim expats to eat and drink during Ramadan.
Expats should also be aware that businesses, restaurants and grocery stores may adjust their opening hours to better fit the daily meal times during Ramadan, staying shut during daylight hours.