However, given the Islamic faith of the Gulf states, the whole issue of dating is, inevitably, a tricky one.Extramarital sexual relationships are illegal in the region, and kissing in public can also land you in trouble. "It’s definitely safe to date, but avoid public displays of affection," advised financial risk manager and TV presenter Rachel Pether, who lives in Abu Dhabi."It’s also illegal to live with someone of the opposite sex who is not your husband, but the police turn a blind eye to it generally." Aside from these concerns, finding a suitable single man also seems to be tricky for many.Despite a glut of dates (40 in just two years in Dubai) Liana Liston, author of blog datingdietingdubai.blogspot.ae, is still looking for love.Families are the foundation stone of Arab society, and so it follows that the Gulf region is extremely family-friendly.Make the expat move with a spouse and children in tow, and you’ll slot relatively easily into a life filled with play-dates and school runs, and make friends through both.It happens sometimes, but it hasn't happened to me. " Meanwhile, Serena Evans found that tracking down a suitable man in Muscat was "almost impossible".
Although rape is very rare statistically, the woman is also sometimes accused in rape cases in the UAE, so it may be higher than reported." Beth Howe, a British journalist who lived in Qatar for four years, argued that while the rate of assaults is quite low, harassment is fairly common.Firstly – should those considering a move be worried about their safety?Liana Liston, an accountant based in Dubai, believes not.Like all of the women we spoke to, she feels that the region is essentially safe, with a few caveats."Everyone knows that if they misbehave they can be sent home," she said.Dress In all countries in the region, modesty is the watchword when it comes to dress.Muslim women will feel right at home, but non-Muslims may struggle initially with the adjustment.As a general rule, aim to cover up shoulders and knees, and in some places, clothes covering up to wrists and ankles may be required.Dubai is the most relaxed city in the region when it comes to clothing, although local campaigners are trying to change these attitudes. "Abu Dhabi is much more conservative than Dubai,” said Rachel Pether."Meeting single men for dating is easy, but finding the right one is hard," she said."I'd only recommend living in the Gulf if you would be happy not to meet anyone to marry here.