Living as an Expat in Jordan

1. What are the visa requirements for expats living in Jordan?

1. The visa requirements for expats living in Jordan vary depending on the country of origin and purpose of stay. Generally, expats need a valid passport, visa, residency permit, and work permit if they plan to work in Jordan. Visas can be obtained at Jordanian embassies or consulates abroad, or through the e-visa system for certain nationalities. It is important to ensure that your visa remains valid throughout your stay in Jordan to avoid any legal issues. Additionally, expats should be aware of any specific requirements related to their residency status, such as registering with the local authorities or renewing their permits in a timely manner to stay compliant with Jordanian immigration laws. It is recommended to consult with the nearest Jordanian embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date information on visa requirements for expats living in Jordan.

2. How easy is it to find accommodation as an expat in Jordan?

Finding accommodation as an expat in Jordan can vary depending on your personal preferences, budget, and location within the country. Here are some key points to consider:

1. Rental Options: Expats in Jordan have a range of options when it comes to accommodation, including apartments, villas, and shared housing. Amman, as the capital city, offers the most variety in terms of rental properties, but other cities like Aqaba and Irbid also have expat-friendly housing options.

2. Real Estate Agents: Working with a reputable real estate agent can make the process of finding accommodation easier, especially if you are unfamiliar with the local rental market and legal requirements. They can help match you with suitable properties based on your preferences and budget.

3. Online Platforms: Utilizing online platforms such as expat forums, social media groups, and rental websites can also be helpful in finding accommodation in Jordan. These platforms often have listings from landlords and agents looking to rent to expats.

4. Budget Considerations: The cost of accommodation in Jordan can vary significantly depending on the location and type of property. Generally, rental prices are more affordable outside of Amman, but amenities and proximity to services may differ.

5. Legal Considerations: Before signing a lease agreement, expats should ensure they understand their rights and responsibilities as tenants in Jordan. It is advisable to have a rental contract reviewed by a legal professional to avoid any misunderstandings or discrepancies.

Overall, while finding accommodation as an expat in Jordan may require some effort and research, there are plenty of options available to suit different preferences and budgets. It is recommended to plan ahead and explore various resources to find the right housing option that meets your needs.

3. What is the cost of living like for expats in Jordan?

The cost of living for expats in Jordan can vary depending on various factors such as lifestyle choices, location within the country, and individual preferences. Generally, Jordan is considered to be relatively affordable for expats compared to other Middle Eastern countries. Some key aspects to consider in terms of cost of living for expats in Jordan include:

1. Accommodation: Rent can range from moderate to high depending on the area and type of accommodation chosen. Amman, the capital city, tends to have higher rental prices compared to smaller towns.

2. Utilities: Expenses for water, electricity, heating, and internet services are typically reasonable in Jordan, but can vary based on usage and location.

3. Transportation: Public transportation costs are relatively low in Jordan, particularly in cities like Amman where taxis and buses are common modes of getting around. However, owning a car and the associated costs such as fuel and maintenance may add to the overall expenses for expats.

4. Food and groceries: Basic groceries are affordable in Jordan, especially local produce and items. Dining out at restaurants can vary in price depending on the type of cuisine and restaurant chosen.

5. Healthcare: Healthcare costs for expats in Jordan can be relatively affordable compared to Western countries, especially with the presence of both public and private healthcare facilities.

Overall, with careful budgeting and smart decision-making, expats can experience a comfortable standard of living in Jordan without breaking the bank. It is advisable to research and understand the cost of living in different regions of the country before making any relocation decisions.

4. How safe is Jordan for expats to live in?

Jordan is generally considered safe for expats to live in. The country has a low crime rate compared to many of its neighbors in the region. However, it’s always important for expats to take common-sense precautions, such as being aware of their surroundings, avoiding risky areas, and following any security guidelines provided by their employer or the local authorities.

1. The Jordanian government places a strong emphasis on maintaining security and stability in the country, which contributes to the overall safety for expats.
2. Jordan is also known for its hospitality and friendliness towards foreigners, which can help expats feel more secure and welcomed in their new environment.
3. Like any other country, there may be occasional security concerns or risks, so it’s important for expats to stay informed about the current situation in Jordan and to take necessary precautions to ensure their safety.
4. Overall, with its relatively low crime rate and welcoming atmosphere, Jordan is considered a safe place for expats to live and work.

5. What is the healthcare system like for expats in Jordan?

As an expat living in Jordan, the healthcare system in the country is generally considered to be of a decent standard, especially in major cities like Amman. Here are some key points to consider regarding the healthcare system for expats in Jordan:

1. Public Healthcare: Jordan has a public healthcare system that provides affordable medical services to its residents, including expats. However, the quality of care in public hospitals and clinics can vary, and there may be long waiting times for non-urgent treatments.

2. Private Healthcare: Many expats in Jordan opt for private healthcare services, which are known for their higher standards of care and shorter waiting times. There are several well-equipped private hospitals and clinics across the country that cater to expatriates.

3. Health Insurance: It is highly recommended for expats living in Jordan to have comprehensive health insurance coverage. This will help cover the cost of medical treatments in both public and private healthcare facilities, ensuring access to quality care without financial burden.

4. Language and Cultural Considerations: While healthcare providers in Jordan are generally proficient in English, there may be instances where language barriers can be a challenge. It is advisable to seek out healthcare facilities that cater to expats and have English-speaking staff to avoid communication issues.

5. Accessibility of Medications: Expats in Jordan may find that certain medications that are readily available in their home countries may not be easily accessible in Jordan. It is advisable to bring an ample supply of any essential medications when moving to Jordan and to consult with a healthcare provider about local alternatives.

Overall, the healthcare system for expats in Jordan offers a mix of public and private healthcare services, with the option to choose the level of care based on individual preferences and needs. It is important for expats to be proactive in securing health insurance coverage and familiarizing themselves with the local healthcare landscape to ensure they receive adequate medical care while living in the country.

6. Is it easy for expat children to attend international schools in Jordan?

Expatriate children in Jordan have the opportunity to attend a variety of international schools that offer high-quality education with globally recognized curricula. These schools cater to the needs of expat families by providing a multicultural environment, small class sizes, and experienced teachers. Additionally, many international schools in Jordan offer extracurricular activities, language support programs, and counseling services to support the academic and emotional well-being of expat children. While it can be relatively easy for expat children to attend international schools in Jordan, it’s essential for parents to consider factors such as tuition fees, location of the school, and availability of seats before making a decision. Additionally, it’s recommended to visit the schools in person, meet with teachers and staff, and inquire about the admissions process to ensure a smooth transition for expat children.

7. What are the best areas for expats to live in Jordan?

1. Amman: The capital city of Jordan, Amman, is a popular choice for expats due to its cosmopolitan atmosphere, diverse amenities, and job opportunities. Areas such as Abdoun, Sweifieh, and Deir Ghbar are known for their expat-friendly communities, with access to international schools, restaurants, and expat services.

2. Abdoun: A posh residential neighborhood in Amman, Abdoun is home to many diplomatic missions, embassies, and upscale shopping districts. Expats living in Abdoun enjoy a high standard of living with access to luxury housing and amenities.

3. Rainbow Street: Located in the heart of Amman, Rainbow Street is a vibrant and trendy area known for its cultural attractions, cafes, and art galleries. Expats seeking a bohemian lifestyle often choose to live in this neighborhood.

4. The Dead Sea: For expats looking for a more serene and relaxing environment, the Dead Sea area offers luxury resorts, spas, and stunning natural landscapes. Living by the Dead Sea provides an escape from the hustle and bustle of the city life.

5. Aqaba: Located on the Red Sea coast, Aqaba is a popular destination for expats seeking a beach lifestyle. The city offers a range of water activities, high-end resorts, and a relaxed atmosphere. Aqaba is also a designated economic zone, attracting expats interested in business opportunities.

6. Madaba: Known for its ancient mosaics and historic sites, Madaba is a charming town located near Amman. Expats looking for a slower pace of life and a strong sense of community often choose to live in Madaba.

7. Dabouq: Situated in the western parts of Amman, Dabouq is a green and upscale residential area known for its luxury villas, international schools, and recreational facilities. Expats who prioritize a peaceful and family-friendly environment may find Dabouq an ideal place to live in Jordan.

8. How is the job market for expats in Jordan?

The job market for expats in Jordan can vary depending on the industry and the individual’s qualifications and experience. Here are some key points to consider:

1. English Teaching: Opportunities are often available for native English speakers to teach English as a second language in Jordan, particularly in language centers and international schools.

2. NGO Sector: Many expats find employment in the non-profit sector, working for international organizations or local NGOs focusing on humanitarian aid, development projects, and other related areas.

3. Technology and IT: Jordan has a growing technology sector, and expats with expertise in information technology may find job opportunities in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and digital marketing.

4. Hospitality and Tourism: With a significant tourism industry, expats may find opportunities in hotels, tour agencies, and other tourism-related businesses.

5. Language Skills: Proficiency in Arabic can be an advantage in certain industries, especially for roles that require direct interaction with local clients or customers.

Overall, while the job market for expats in Jordan may not be as robust as in some other countries in the region, there are opportunities available, particularly in certain sectors where specific skills and expertise are in demand. Networking, knowledge of the local job market, and fluency in Arabic can all be valuable assets for expats seeking employment in Jordan.

9. What cultural differences should expats be aware of when living in Jordan?

When living in Jordan as an expat, it is important to be aware of several cultural differences to ensure a smooth integration into the society. Some key cultural differences to consider include:

1. Hospitality: Jordanians are known for their warmth and hospitality towards guests. It is common for locals to invite guests into their homes and offer food or drinks as a sign of respect and friendship. As an expat, it is important to reciprocate this hospitality and show appreciation for the Jordanian culture of generosity.

2. Respect for elders: Respect for elders is deeply ingrained in Jordanian culture. It is important for expats to show respect towards older individuals, whether it be in the workplace or in social settings.

3. Religious customs: Jordan is a predominantly Muslim country, and Islamic customs and traditions play a significant role in daily life. Expats should be respectful of local religious practices, such as fasting during Ramadan and dressing modestly in public places.

4. Gender roles: Traditional gender roles are still prevalent in Jordanian society. While progress has been made towards gender equality, expats should be mindful of cultural norms regarding the roles of men and women in social interactions and the workplace.

5. Language: Arabic is the official language of Jordan, and while English is widely spoken in urban areas, learning some basic Arabic phrases can help expats communicate effectively and show respect for the local language and culture.

6. Time orientation: Jordanians have a more relaxed attitude towards time compared to Western cultures. Meetings and events may not always start promptly, and schedules can be flexible. Patience and flexibility are key when navigating these differences in approach to time management.

7. Personal space: Jordanians tend to have a closer physical proximity when interacting with others compared to Western cultures. Expats should be prepared for more frequent physical contact, such as handshakes, hugs, or kisses on the cheek, as a sign of warmth and friendliness.

8. Dress code: While Jordan is relatively liberal in terms of dress compared to some other Middle Eastern countries, modesty is still important, especially in more conservative areas. Expats should dress modestly in public places, particularly when visiting religious sites or rural areas.

By being aware of and respecting these cultural differences, expats can build positive relationships with locals and enjoy a fulfilling experience living in Jordan.

10. How is the transportation system in Jordan for expats?

The transportation system in Jordan for expats is relatively reliable and affordable, offering various options to navigate the country. Here are some key points regarding transportation for expats in Jordan:

1. Public buses: The most common form of public transportation in Jordan, with routes covering most major cities and towns. They are cost-effective but can be crowded and not always punctual.

2. Taxis: Taxis are widely available in Jordan, both in urban areas and for longer distances between cities. It is important to negotiate the fare before starting the journey or opt for metered taxis.

3. Ride-hailing apps: Services like Uber and Careem operate in Jordan, providing a convenient and safe option for expats to travel within cities.

4. Rental cars: Expats with a valid driver’s license can opt to rent a car for more flexibility in getting around Jordan. However, driving in Jordan can be chaotic, with different road rules and driving styles to navigate.

5. Private drivers: Some expats opt to hire a private driver for daily transportation, especially if they are not comfortable driving themselves or navigating public transport.

Overall, while the transportation system in Jordan can be efficient, expats should plan their journeys in advance, consider the most suitable mode of transportation based on their needs, and be prepared for some challenges such as traffic congestion and occasional lack of infrastructure in more remote areas.

11. What is the social life like for expats in Jordan?

The social life for expats in Jordan can vary depending on various factors such as location, interests, and personal connections. Generally, expats in Jordan have access to a vibrant social scene that offers a mix of cultural experiences, outdoor activities, and community events. Here are some aspects of the social life for expats in Jordan:

1. Expat Communities: There are established expat communities in Jordan, especially in major cities like Amman. These communities often organize social gatherings, sports activities, cultural events, and networking opportunities for expats to connect and socialize.

2. Cultural Events: Jordan hosts a range of cultural events throughout the year, including music festivals, art exhibitions, food fairs, and film screenings. Expats can immerse themselves in Jordanian culture and meet locals and other expats at these events.

3. Outdoor Activities: Jordan’s diverse landscapes offer plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, and exploring historical sites. Many expats enjoy participating in outdoor adventures and joining hiking groups to socialize with like-minded individuals.

4. Dining Out: Jordan has a thriving culinary scene with a wide range of restaurants serving traditional Jordanian cuisine as well as international dishes. Dining out is a popular social activity for expats to meet friends, colleagues, and locals over a meal.

5. Nightlife: Amman, in particular, offers a lively nightlife with trendy bars, clubs, and lounges where expats can unwind and socialize with fellow expats and locals. The nightlife scene in Jordan caters to a diverse range of tastes and preferences.

Overall, expats in Jordan have ample opportunities to build a fulfilling social life by engaging in the local culture, participating in community events, and exploring the diverse social activities available in the country.

12. Are there expat communities and social clubs in Jordan?

Yes, there are expat communities and social clubs in Jordan that cater to the needs and interests of foreigners living in the country. These communities provide a support network for expats, offering opportunities for socializing, networking, and engaging in activities with like-minded individuals. Some of the popular expat communities and social clubs in Jordan include:

1. The American Women’s Association (AWA) of Amman: This organization aims to foster friendship and cultural exchange among American women in Jordan through various social and charitable events.

2. The British Club: A social club that brings together expatriates from the UK and other nationalities for social gatherings, sports activities, and cultural events.

3. The French Institute in Jordan: This cultural center organizes events, workshops, and language classes for the French expat community in Jordan.

4. The German-Jordanian Society: A platform for German expats in Jordan to connect, share experiences, and participate in cultural events and activities.

These expat communities and social clubs play a vital role in helping expatriates adjust to life in Jordan and make the most of their time living in the country.

13. How easy is it for expats to open a bank account in Jordan?

Opening a bank account as an expat in Jordan is generally considered to be a straightforward process. Most major local banks and some international banks operating in the country offer account services to expatriates. To open a bank account, expats will typically need to provide a valid passport, residence permit, proof of address, and sometimes a reference letter from their employer or a local contact. Some banks may also require a minimum initial deposit. Additionally, some expats may face language barriers, as most banking services in Jordan are conducted in Arabic, although many banks offer services in English as well. Overall, the process of opening a bank account in Jordan is fairly accessible for expats with the necessary documentation and requirements.

14. What are the best ways for expats to meet locals and make friends in Jordan?

Meeting and making friends with locals as an expat in Jordan can greatly enrich your experience in the country. Here are some of the best ways to do so:

1. Language Exchange: Participating in language exchange programs or platforms can help you connect with locals who are interested in practicing your language while teaching you Arabic.

2. Joining Clubs or Groups: Engaging in activities such as sports clubs, hobby groups, or volunteering can provide opportunities to meet locals with shared interests.

3. Attend Cultural Events: Attending cultural events, festivals, or exhibitions can be a great way to meet locals and learn more about Jordanian culture.

4. Utilize Social Media: Join local expat or community groups on platforms like Facebook or Meetup to connect with both expats and locals in Jordan.

5. Enroll in Classes: Taking classes or workshops, such as cooking classes or art classes, can be a fun way to meet people with similar interests.

6. Local Cafes and Restaurants: Visiting local cafes and restaurants frequented by both expats and locals can be a casual way to strike up conversations and make new friends.

7. Through Work or School: Building relationships with colleagues or classmates is a natural way to connect with locals and develop friendships.

By actively seeking out opportunities to engage with the local community, expats in Jordan can build meaningful relationships and create a support network in their new home.

15. What are the best ways for expats to learn Arabic in Jordan?

Learning Arabic in Jordan as an expat can greatly enhance your experience living in the country. Here are some of the best ways to learn Arabic in Jordan:

1. Language Schools: There are numerous language institutes in Jordan that offer structured Arabic courses for expats. These schools provide a formal education environment with qualified instructors and various levels of curriculum to suit your proficiency.

2. Private Tutoring: Hiring a private Arabic tutor can be an effective way to personalize your learning experience. Tutors can tailor lessons to your specific needs and schedule, helping you progress at your own pace.

3. Language Exchange: Participating in language exchange programs or local conversation groups can provide you with the opportunity to practice Arabic with native speakers in a casual setting. This can improve your conversational skills and cultural understanding.

4. Immersion: Immersing yourself in the local community and daily life in Jordan can greatly accelerate your Arabic learning. Try to use Arabic in your daily interactions, such as shopping at local markets or socializing with natives.

5. Online Resources: Utilize online resources such as language learning apps, websites, and online courses to supplement your Arabic learning journey. These can provide additional practice and resources to enhance your understanding of the language.

By combining these various methods and actively engaging with the language and culture, expats can effectively learn Arabic in Jordan and immerse themselves fully in the local experience.

16. How is the internet and cell phone service for expats in Jordan?

Internet and cell phone service for expats in Jordan is generally reliable in urban areas like Amman, with good coverage and speeds comparable to what you would find in Western countries. However, there can be occasional service disruptions in more rural or remote regions. Here are some key points to consider:

1. Internet Service Providers: There are several ISPs in Jordan offering various internet packages, including fiber-optic connections in some areas. Popular providers include Orange, Zain, and Umniah.

2. Cell Phone Providers: The major cell phone providers in Jordan are Orange, Zain, and Umniah. They offer competitive prepaid and postpaid plans with good coverage throughout the country.

3. Cost: The cost of both internet and cell phone service in Jordan is relatively affordable compared to prices in Western countries. You can choose from different plans based on your usage and budget.

4. Connectivity: Most expats find that they can easily stay connected with family and friends abroad through internet and cell phone services in Jordan. Video calls, messaging apps, and social media platforms are commonly used for communication.

5. Roaming: If you plan to travel outside of Jordan frequently, it’s worth checking with your provider about international roaming options and costs to stay connected while abroad.

Overall, expats in Jordan generally have access to reliable internet and cell phone services that meet their communication needs, whether for work or staying in touch with loved ones.

17. What are the best healthcare facilities for expats in Jordan?

The healthcare facilities in Jordan are generally well-equipped and offer good quality care for expats living in the country. Some of the best healthcare facilities for expats in Jordan include:

1. King Hussein Cancer Center: This is a leading cancer treatment center in the region, offering state-of-the-art facilities and top-notch medical care for cancer patients.

2. Jordan Hospital: Located in Amman, Jordan Hospital is a private healthcare facility known for its high standards of medical services and modern amenities.

3. Istishari Hospital: Situated in the capital city of Amman, Istishari Hospital is a well-respected medical center with a wide range of specialties and a reputation for excellence in patient care.

4. Specialty Clinics: There are various specialty clinics and medical centers across Jordan that cater to specific healthcare needs, such as cardiology, orthopedics, and women’s health.

Overall, expats in Jordan can access quality healthcare services across different medical facilities, both private and public. It is advisable for expats to have comprehensive health insurance coverage to ensure access to the best medical care available in the country.

18. How can expats stay connected with their home country while living in Jordan?

Staying connected with one’s home country while living as an expat in Jordan is essential for maintaining a sense of familiarity and belonging. Here are several ways expats can stay connected:

1. Utilize social media platforms: Expats can stay connected with friends and family back home through popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp. These platforms allow for regular communication, sharing updates, photos, and videos easily.

2. Video calls: Platforms like Skype, Zoom, and FaceTime provide expats with the opportunity to have face-to-face conversations with their loved ones back home. This helps bridge the distance and maintain strong relationships.

3. Join expat groups: There are various expat communities and groups in Jordan where expats can connect with others who are going through similar experiences. These groups often organize social events, gatherings, and outings, providing a support system and a sense of community.

4. Regular visits: Planning regular visits back to the home country can help expats reconnect with their roots, spend quality time with family and friends, and maintain a sense of connection with their home culture.

5. Stay updated with news and events: Expats can stay connected with their home country by following news websites, blogs, and online forums that provide updates on current events, trends, and developments back home.

By utilizing these strategies, expats in Jordan can effectively stay connected with their home country, overcome feelings of homesickness, and ensure a smooth transition into their new life abroad.

19. What are the shopping options like for expats in Jordan?

Shopping options for expats in Jordan are diverse and varied, catering to a wide range of interests and budgets. Here are some key points to consider:

1. Souqs and Markets: Jordan is famous for its vibrant markets, or “souqs”, where expats can find everything from fresh produce to handmade crafts and traditional clothing. The most well-known market in Jordan is the souq in downtown Amman, offering a myriad of goods and a bustling atmosphere.

2. Malls and Shopping Centers: Jordan also boasts modern shopping malls and centers with a mix of international and local brands. The most popular malls in Amman include City Mall, Taj Mall, and Mecca Mall, providing a one-stop destination for expats looking for familiar retail choices.

3. Specialty Stores: For those seeking unique and locally sourced products, Jordan has a range of specialty stores that cater to specific needs. These could include organic food stores, art galleries, antique shops, and more.

4. Online Shopping: With the rise of e-commerce, expats in Jordan can also take advantage of online shopping platforms to conveniently purchase goods and have them delivered to their doorstep. Websites such as and MarkaVIP offer a vast selection of products at competitive prices.

Overall, expats in Jordan have plenty of shopping options to explore, whether they prefer traditional markets, modern malls, specialty stores, or online shopping. The country offers a mix of local and international brands, making it easy for expats to find whatever they need or desire during their time living in Jordan.

20. How can expats stay informed about local news and events in Jordan?

1. Expats living in Jordan can stay informed about local news and events through various sources, both traditional and digital. One of the best ways is to regularly read local English-language newspapers and magazines such as The Jordan Times and Jordan News. These publications cover a wide range of news topics, events, and cultural happenings in the country.

2. Following local news outlets on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram can also provide expats with real-time updates on current events and important announcements happening in Jordan.

3. Attending community events, cultural festivals, and networking gatherings can be another effective way to stay informed about local news and events. Engaging with the local community and meeting new people can provide expats with valuable insights and access to firsthand information about what is happening in the country.

4. Joining expat groups or forums online, as well as local community groups in Jordan, can also offer expats a platform to share information, ask questions, and stay updated on news and events in the country.

5. Lastly, leveraging technology such as news apps, RSS feeds, and news websites that focus on Jordanian news can ensure expats have access to a diverse range of sources and perspectives on local events and news developments.