The Postal System in the UAE: What’s it Like?

mail box

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Dubai may be having the tallest structure on Earth or the biggest man-made island, etc but believe it or not, we’re still in the dark ages with regards to postal service. Translated: there’s no sexy postman with a big, brown leather bag ringing  our bell.

I don’t know any country who still uses the post office box. Even in the Philippines, our mails are conveniently delivered to our doorstep. Unsexy mailman, however but that’s not the point. It’s been three years since we’ve relocated here and nothing has changed with the UAE’s postal system. Most of the expatriates here either rent a post office box for their personal emails or have it go through their company’s post office box. Usually there are ‘office boys’ who go to the main post office to collect the company mails and distribute them to employees.

I admit, we still don’t have our own post office box for private use and all of my mails go to my husband’s address (i.e., hi s office’s post office box). I have stopped addressing my mails to my company because they seem to get lost every time. It’s either because of the volume of the mails the company gets or the office boy hates me. Anyway, there’s not much inconvenience in our part, except that, if the packages are big and won’t fit in a standard post office box, we have to collect the package at the main post office in Karama.

Karama Post Office is about a 20 minute drive from my office on a mild-traffic day. It gets pretty difficult when I’m busy at work.

I admit, we have postponed owning our own post office box because when we arrived here in 2007, I was optimistic that Emirates Post will deliver our mails in our doorstep, soon. Fast forward three years, nada, still the PO Box style.

If you’re living in Dubai and want to rent or know the rental charges, it’s found on the Emirates Post website as follows:

For Individuals
During the first 4 months of the year, rent is Dhs 200 + Dhs 10 for every key
During the second 4 months of the year, rent is Dhs 150 + Dhs 10 for every key
During the last 4 months of the year, rent is Dhs 100 + Dhs 10 for every key

I need to go out to get a parcel (small box) from Karama post office which would mean I need permission from my boss to go out or go later after work and face heavy traffic. I might not even catch Pristine still awake when I go home after that.

I wish we’d all come out from this dark era. I need my mails delivered directly to me and I would thank the government for this little privilege.


  1. I never thought that’s the case here until you told me. I thought I can just give my apartment number, apartment address and all that… and then all mails/parcels will be delivered at least up to the watchman and then i could claim from him. good thing, i canceled giving my address to a friend in japan and gave our company address instead because i felt the address i got was so lacking… I am so used to having a zip code.

    i could see no improvement on this part of the story in the world where we are.

    is this your mailbox in japan? ka-cool ba sa background.

    .-= rose´s last blog scares me now =-.



  2. You can actually still use a PO box here in the US. I have a friend who does because she has moved so much in the last few years it’s just easier rather than having to notify all your bill companies of your new address every time.
    I like getting it delivered though, I have to admit! 😉
    PS. When are you going to send me your address???
    .-= Krista´s last blog ..Aviation Days revisited =-.



  3. Contrary to what most people believe (including most Americans) the US Postal Service does not deliver everywhere. We live in a very rural area where there is a very small town and we live 9 miles from town. The post office does not deliver here, only within the town limits. We have no choice but to use a post office box, but we do get one free since delivery is not an option. We like it, it’s almost a social event here to go to the post office. You always see someone you know! And we never have to worry about our mail when we go out of town. I have had a few problems when ordering online, though. Some places use only UPS or Fed Ex and won’t accept a PO box for delivery. So I put my physical address…problem is that then they send it via the postal service if it’s cheaper and sometimes things get sent back if the clerk doesn’t know us and what box we have. (Some don’t bother to look it up 😦 We can put our physical address AND the PO box number , but sometimes online order forms reject it as soon as you put PO!!
    .-= Some Lucky Dog´s last blog ..Curious George DVD Giveaway at Mommy Niri =-.



  4. First-off, LOVE the new design, SO pretty!! First thing I notice as your page loaded. The colors are lovely.
    Now, about the mail, I can’t believe with such a progressive-seeming country, your mail service is so poor. We look forward to getting our mail each day, especially this time of year – awaiting all the online ordered Christmas gifts and the anticipated Christmas (and in my case BIRTHDAY) cards. I hope the UAE government fixes your postal service soon.
    Have a great weekend.
    .-= Lorie Shewbridge´s last blog ..Praise for Me Do Good Shirt Company =-.



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