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11 signs you’re mum to a Dubai toddler

July 7, 2016


If you’re mum to a toddler here in Dubai you’ll need this handy guide…


  1. Long gone are the days of asking out-of-town guests to arrive laden down with wine (six bottles of Whispering Angel, please mum), now it’s all about Ella’s Kitchen pouches with meat, snacks from Organix and outfits from John Lewis. Extra points for Pampers Premium pull-up nappies.
  2. You think your child’s speech is isn’t developing as fast as you’d hoped. Turns out that the nanny has them talking fluent Tagalog.
  3. Swimming lessons started at three months. And not in the local scuzzy leisure centre, home of verruca socks and chilly changing rooms, but inside at the balmy Mina A’Salam or at your friend’s pool with a private instructor from Speedo. And you get professional underwater photos taken. Obvs.
  4. You realise that your friend’s kids have never flown economy, and you’ve never been upgraded…
  5. British Mums Dubai is a source of entertainment (FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!), information you never realised you needed and a seemingly endless supply of second-hand Jumperoos with “the music not working, but it’s annoying anyway haha”.
  6. The sprog’s first haircut and first pair of shoes are not only recorded for prosperity with a branded photo, but cost the same as yours.
  7. By simply asking what nursery a fellow mum has chosen you can accurately ascertain where they live, what their salary bracket is and what they have for dinner.
  8. You know where to buy not only baby Camelbaks, but the spare mouthpieces. The holy grail.
  9. The pros and cons of every soft play area in town can be debated for hours with your mum friends: “Yes, Cheeky Monkeys at J3 has a great toddler area, but the car park spaces in the basement are WAY too small for the Pajero”.
  10. You have a Bugaboo travel case for smuggling back extra luggage every summer, know exactly where and when to book the flight home to score the best seats and space for your under-2, and don’t travel without a GroBlind.
  11. You can only dream of knowing exactly where in Dragon Mart to find party essentials (I know they sell glass sweetie jars somewhere…), adorable children’s furniture (I’m sure I saw some Eames knock-offs back there) and plastic fencing for creating the perfect kiddie kage. Nail this, and you’ll have friends here for life.

Do you have any to add to the list?

A version of this post first appeared in the summer issue of Baby & Child magazine.


6 responses to “11 signs you’re mum to a Dubai toddler”

  1. Hannah says:

    John alewis ship to adubai for a tenna 😊

  2. Leeanne says:

    Your 3 year old thinks it’s normal to go to an all singing all dancing birthday party EVERY weekend with soft play, party games, pizza and chips, an appearance from Barney, enormous professionally made birthday cakes and mega party bags!

    • Helen Farmer says:

      Too right. Makes my childhood parties look a bit sad – homemade cake and playing in the sprinklers. Still my idea of a good time!

  3. Tarana Khan says:

    So true about points 7 and 11!

  4. eva says:

    Oh dear! I guess I will have to get used to it quickly. And now, off to pack a suitcase full of pull up pampers!

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