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UAE vs. International Boarding: A Price Comparison

Schooling in the UAE


UAE GRAND TOTAL (year 12): 126,550 AED


A recent 2014 HSBC report stated that, “the cost of studying in the UAE is equivalent to about half (51%) of the gross domestic product (GDP) per person, or nearly $28,000 (AED 102,760) per year. The average annual fees ($21,371) and average cost of living per year ($6,000) puts the overall costs of education in UAE ahead of those in Canada, Singapore, Japan, and Germany reported Globaleye.com.

The website went on to say, “The parents of a typical child aged 6 to 9 in Dubai are paying $18,878 (69,283 AED) each year in school fees alone, which increases to $21,725 (AED 79,733) for children aged 10 to 13, and further to $26,196 (96,140 AED) for the most expensive secondary schools.”

“The study also reported a 24% increase in private school fees over the past 5 years, resulting in a significant 57% of the surveyed population expressing fears that they may not be able to afford their children’s education in the future…”


Education fees in the UAE


School Fees

American School of Dubai: Up to 69,000 AED
Dubai College: Up to 79,000 AED
Gems World Academy: Up to 96,000 AED
Repton: Up to 95,000 AED
Indian schools – average 10,424 AED
UK (Average) – 78,066 AED (premium schools)
Australian (Average) – 50,000 AED (premium schools)
American (Average): 65,000 AED (premium schools)


Additional fees and costs

School buses
School buses cost on average between 4,000 to 8,000 AED
Al Diyafah High School, for one route: 6,500 AED

4 bed house: 250,000-450,000; Arabian Ranches four bed – 330,000 AED
3 bed house average: 185,000 to 250,000; Silicon Oasis 3 bed 200,000 AED
Difference: 130,000 AED

Lunches for one year at Repton: 6,125 AED

Extra-curricular activities
According to the Ministry of Education, the average school year is 190 days or 27 weeks.

James and Alex Dance classes: breakdown Dhs70 per lesson x27 weeks = 1,890 AED
Horse Riding Lessons- Emirates Equestrian Centre: Dhs120 per lesson x 27 weeks = 3,240 AED
Swimming Lessons- Dubai Elite Swim Club: Dhs100 per group lesson x27= 2,700 AED
Football- Its Just Football: Dhs 1140 for 12 weeks, therefore 27 weeks= 2,565 AED
Ballet- Dubai Dance Academy: Dhs90 per lesson x 27= 2,430 AED
Average fuel used to and from activities: 75 AED per week
Total for 5 extra-curricular activities per week: 12,825 AED

Music Lessons: At Dubai Music School
Piano: 2 x per week x 8 weeks= 300 for 27 weeks= 990 AED
Violin: lessons 2x per week x 8 weeks = 400 therefor 27 weeks = 1,320 AED
Transport provided by Dubai Music School: 990 AED
Total for 4 music lessons per week: 3,300 AED

Uniform prices vary, however as most sell through a third party they tend to be expensive.
Gems Wellington International School uniform costs approximately 1,000 AED

In-House Additions
Various trips and outings, book-fairs and cake bakes all add up: 800 AED
Those Little Extras (Calculators, notebooks, Lovely Devices and software are all required in schools in the UAE): 1000 AED

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