Expatriates Saving Behaviour in United Arabs Emirates (UAE)



Expatriates Saving Behaviour in United Arabs Emirates (UAE)




(Farnoosh Chitsazi)

Student ID: EAC0911623

KM391: Research Project

Research proposal

October 2012

Supervisor: Catherine Kennedy

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to investigate Expatriates Saving Behaviour in United Arabs Emirates (UAE).

Research ObjectivesTo find the most typical methods of saving by age, nationality and income level.

Analyse al hilal portfolio of customer by age, income and nationality.

To find out Dubai residents attitude to saving in Dubai.

To bring recommendations to Al hilal bank for new products/enhancement of existing products.

Research DesignOntology research method will be utilized in this research. The sample which will be used is based on expat salaried who reside in UAE and they are banking with AHB. Self employed are not in this sampling as they have more complicated methods of savings and they rather invest in wider range of financial product than simple methods of savings. The prepared questionnaire will be given to walking customers in the braches whom hold an account with AHB. Minimum of 50 customers are involved in this sampling. To answer the questions, a phenomenological research design using focus groups will be utilized. Phenomenology is a research design used to explore the perceptions, opinions, and feelings of participants based on their lived experiences with a particular phenomenon. The phenomenological design involves investigating the experiences of individuals in order to obtain “comprehensive descriptions that provide the basis for a reflective structural analysis that portray the essences of the experience” (Moustakas, 1994, p. 13). The researcher will use phenomenology to arrive at the essential meaning of lived experience as it pertains to this research focus.

Moustakas (1994) argued, “Phenomena are the building blocks of human science and the basis for all knowledge” (p. 26). Through the seven steps of phenomenological induction as outlined by Moustakas, the expatriates’ responses to questionnaire can be coded and reduced to arrive at the essence of the expatriate customers’ experiences and opinions with regard to banking in United Arabs Emirate. Phenomenology is useful because of the open nature of the analysis, which allows conclusions to be drawn from the responses of participants across the sample.

1.3 Justification for your choice of Research topicAs a banker, the research will provide me with broader range of information about Dubai expat saving routines which helps to diversify my knowledge and bringing new ideas to design new products to attract new customers and increase liability portfolio of the bank.

Banking is a financial institutionally and an intermediary that accepts intensive deposits and withdrawals from an account holder at any location and is affected by economic choices in a country. Saving money in foreign currency can be done either in local currencies or foreign currencies. When in a foreign currency, one can wait until the currency value appreciates from the buying price of the currency to the selling price then sell the currency and make profits. This happens in Forex Exchange market. Most wealthy investors and philanthropist invest their money in foreign countries with a higher and better currency buying shares from well-up companies. They can even own those companies depending on what they offer and how many dividends the companies earn on a monthly basis. This implies thorough understanding of how expatriate customers are of great significance.

One cannot protect self against Inflation in a local country. This is because inflation is the purchasing power of money. Devaluation against other currencies affects inflation, therefore, banking in another country and converting from a more stable currency when one need to make purchases is the only way to save a situation. Business men save money in foreign countries for easy buying of goods and services importing to their local countries for business purpose. They can also save to boost the business when the economy has devastations.

Saving money for retirement is essential as one can put the money to work for them. The retirement interest earned is high in foreign countries than in most local countries. A person can choose a retirement fund that suits him regardless of the country. One can save money to make a down payment on an asset. This contributes to one getting better interest rates since one negotiation power goes better when there is a down payment on the asset. Saving money in foreign countries can be done to enhance luxurious vacations and explore the beauty of life in a stylish way. One saves money for the tour to a foreign country. People save money for a future sinking fund. This helps to stop one from dipping to your pocket to get money for repairs, emergencies and any unexpected expenses in future. Education is very essential, and many people will be glad to study in foreign countries. Most people return to school for more education one can save money in a foreign country to enhance full education cover and maintenance. Also, one can save for their children’s future education as the foreign banks can lower banking fees for frequent transactions. It is necessary to save money in foreign countries, since one can access currencies that one cannot save in the local country such as the non-convertible currencies. Some local banks accounts have limited sets of financial transactions. For instance: an online gambling account. One can save money in countries where they offer gambling services to gamble for better and more money.

Research Approach takenThe research is based on deductive research approach. The theory that I have states that most of expat in UAE do not intend to say their money as they find it un-reliable, bank can put on hold at any time due their liabilities or return on savings in their home country is more attractive than what is being offered in UAE banks. I would look more at general surveys and the research is based on empirical investigation since I will collect the available data and analyse them and by recommendations and suggestions which will be provided by the end of the project is leaded to a problem solving project.

Significance of using this research method

The methodological approach of the present study will be shaped in large part by the work of Creswell (2009) and his unique perspective on and enthusiasm for the observer-participant model. Creswell (2009) has had an especially formative effect on the researcher’s understanding of both the opportunities and limitations of banking in UAE. This is unusually deep and comprehensive data collection achieved principally through a blend of creative and traditional techniques mixed to structure, rigor, and overall discipline. Creswell’s (2009) fundamental goal is always to locate and settle on the fine line been objective observation (and the rewards inherent to that approach) and subjective participation, which offers especially unique rewards in terms of recognition of subtle detail, understanding of study participants and their unique environments, and a larger sense of potentially significant intangibles that often escape the notice of the fully detached researcher. This researcher understands that the study itself and any actions associated with it will affect the experience of Expatriates customers. The present study’s proposed methodology seeks to embrace, not dismiss, the influence of various expatriates’ behaviors in the UAE. However, these elements in and of themselves have little value without data that are recorded and interpreted using strict and consistent methods.

One factor for selecting phenomenology is because it rejects rational objectivity and emphasizes the importance of subjective experience and contextual consciousness (Groenwald, 2004). Only those individuals experiencing a phenomenon constitute a reliable source of insight into reality and certainty (Moustakas, 1994). In phenomenology, reality is established through a process of uncovering the meaning of a specific phenomenon (Moustakas, 1994). In this study, the meaning of reality will be uncovered through a process of semi structured interviews of participants who will be chosen by purposive sampling.

Moustakas (1994) contended that every phenomenon is worthy of exploration. Phenomenology captures the essence of the phenomenon within the context of meaning for those experiencing the phenomenon, which signifies the uniqueness and subjective nature of the studied phenomenon (Moustakas, 1994). For this study, the focus of the research is to uncover and understand the perceptions and experiences of expatriates in the United Emirates Arab.

Primary research

Primary research was majored in the collection of information needed for this research. Primary research entails collection of raw data from a number of sources. Among the tools, that were employed in the collection of relevant information included the use of questionnaires, use of telephone interviews as well as interviews in both formal and informal settings, and surveys. Among the challenges that we encountered were: lack of cooperation from our respondents sometimes we were accorded hostile reception in some instances we had to work at the pace determined by the respondents. This alone made the whole exercise time consuming. The costs that were associated with the research process proved to be a challenge. I was however fortunate enough to acquire first hand information that was relevant to the study.

Secondary research

This involved collecting research data that existed i.e. from journals books and the internet. This was less time consuming compared to the time I used to collect primary data. I however noticed that most of the secondary data did not amount to the information that I sought; as most of the information was not relevant. Incomplete information formed bulk of what I collected as only small studies pertaining to the topic at hand were disclosed. Information was in most case not timely.


The research was purposefully carried out by the use of Questionnaires. This was to achieve as many responds to the question that we posed. The use of questionnaires allowed as to access to enough information that allowed as to compare some of the response to see if they were in agreement or provided divergent views. According to most of the information were acquired we determined that there was a consensus that social media use for educators has the potential for better teaching methodology. However, many pointed out instances that social media technologies can be used and affect education negatively. Fifty education employees were supplied with questionnaires by hand delivery and were given two weeks to fill. Twenty subordinate employees in education were also given the questionnaire and finally two senior administrators of two schools were given the questionnaires to enable us collect the picture of social media in education setup.

Ethical Considerations

I felt addressing the various ethical concerns and considerations that could potentially crop up was an imperative in the preparation of the report of the research. All parties that will play a role in the facilitating of this research study and its consequent compilation will be adequately informed on the aspects of the study and their involvement is primarily subject to their consent. The information that will be obtained from the various participants will be treated with a level of secrecy and the information acquired will not be used for other purposes other than the intended. This to will be communicated to the participants. Incentives will not be issued to participants to solicit for information and their involvement in the study. Finally, all the secondary information that will be used for the purposes of this research will be adequately recognized in the preparation of the final report.

Research Validity and Reliability

A number of factors clearly introduce real and potential elements of bias and distortion. Most important of all, the researcher’s limited experience and only partial knowledge of the teachers who might participate in the proposed study, have at least the potential to compromise elements of the study and influence its overall findings. On the whole, however, the study data and all findings, discussion, conclusions, and recommendations they help to generate will be valid, reliable, and broadly testable either through a reproduction of the study itself or by additional studies performed by other researchers. All possible biases can be taken into account and every reasonable effort to adjust for those biases can be made. The proposed methodological approach is appropriate and will serve as the foundation for a reliable study with valid results.

I feel it will be an imperative to employ avenues that would not challenge the validity and reliability of the information that will be collected to facilitate the compilation of the report on the study. The main characteristics of the different business research philosophies and approaches that are employed by the different researchers are adequately discussed in the literature review coupled by the research questions of the study. The highest levels of validity and reliability are set to be achieved as the data collection techniques and the subsequent examination of the data will be accurate. Considerations have been made as I have noted that there are a number of aspects pertaining to research validity and reliability that can potentially influence the subsequent findings. All inquiries relating to theoretical aspects are addressed in the literature review.


Creswell, J. W. (2005). Educational research: Planning, conducting, and evaluating quantitative and qualitative research (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Creswell, J. W. (2009). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Groenwald, T. (2004). A phenomenological research design illustrated. International Journal of Qualitative Methods, 3(1), 1-25.

Moustakas, C. (1994). Phenomenological research methods. London: Sage.