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Saudi Arabia > Testimonials > Scottish Nurse Working in Riyadh

Q1. Where are you originally from & how long have you been a nurse?

I was born in Britain and qualified as a nurse in 2013. Nursing for 11 years now.

Q2. How long have you been in Saudi Arabia now, and which city are you currently living in?

I have been in Saudi Arabia for 9 months and living in the capital Riyadh.

 Q3. Have you always wanted to work in Saudi Arabia?

I have wanted to come to Saudi Arabia for at least seven years. I have always been interested in Saudi, the culture and working in a different environment. This country was at the top of my list of places to go, live and work. 

Q4. What were your thoughts/impressions during your first days in Saudi Arabia? Was it what you expected, or vastly different? How so?

Living in Saudi is better than I expected and because my heart was in coming here, I think I am embracing the lifestyle, work and different cultures with absolute joy. I feel respected as a female and valued as a nurse because nursing is crucial in every country and the Saudi people are delighted to have me here.

I can continue learning in my profession here and travel to neighbouring countries freely when I have time off.

I knew the language barrier may be an issue, but most people speak English and if not, they are very obliging to help me communicate.

Q5. How was the recruitment/onboarding process?

The recruitment process was straight forward and Lai at Profco whom helped me with my application was extremely efficient, knowledgeable and helpful with any questions I had. I would recommend Profco to anyone thinking of or wanting to come to Saudi.

Q6. What was the arrival and orientation process like? Was it helpful in terms of getting yourself set up for life in Saudi Arabia?

When I arrived, I felt safe, got my SIM card which worked immediately so I could contact whoever I had to. I was taken to my apartment complex and given my own apartment, which is perfect and has all the appliances I need.

I have made my apartment comfortable to suit myself and relax perfectly.

The orientation process was clear, and I was given a tour around the hospital, social club, swimming and beauty area.

Everything is within a short walk and easy to find.

I settled in very well and I found the process supportive and helpful.

I use Uber to go to shopping malls and restaurants and the choice of these luxuries is wonderful. Way better than the UK in my opinion.

Q7. What is it like at work? Is it vastly different to working back home, or much the same?

Working as a nurse wherever you are in the world can be challenging, but if you can work hard and adapt to a new environment, then anyone will do well.

No matter where you are, the basic principles of nursing apply throughout the world. Patient safety, safe practice, adhering to local policies, communication, patient centred nursing etc. are all fundamental principles of nursing. Therefore, applying your knowledge and skills in Saudi Arabia is the same as it would be in the UK.

There are plenty of courses to continue ongoing learning if you wish and staff to support this.

I prefer nursing in Saudi Arabia because personally my skills have been improved and working with people from different countries has given me more opportunity to learn and ask questions.

We have weekly journal clubs too, which we take turns doing to speak about up-to-date research and how we can constantly improve practice.

I think feeling appreciated has boosted my confidence and I am signing on currently for another year.

Q8. What are the housing and recreation facilities like?

The housing is clean and has everything you need. I find it quiet, which is good for resting.

There is a gym, swimming pool and beauty salon in the housing complex.

Q9. What is the social life like?

The social life is what you make it just like home. My favourite pastime is dining out and there is plenty of choice in Riyadh.

The food is delicious with many different varieties. There are trips you can go on for a day and wonderful shopping malls.  

Riyadh has events on often and I still have many places to go and see.

Q10. Do you manage to get out sightseeing etc. much? Is getting around easy to manage?

There are trips you can book to go on very easily and are available every month through the social club. You can also book trips yourself and there are plenty of sights to see.

I have been to a few places locally in Riyadh, but I plan on going on dessert trips, other towns/cities and see as much of Saudi as I possibly can.

Getting around is super easy, I use Uber. Sometimes I walk to the supermarket or a restaurant depending on what I want.

Q11. How has the decision to work in Saudi Arabia affected you, professionally and personally?

Coming to Saudi was the best decision I made, but again I wanted to come here for years.

Professionally, I love it. I work with a great team of people who welcomed me. They did find my Scottish accent challenging at times, but I speak much slower and if anything, we all laugh about it.

Also working here, I can compare and contrast the working environment to Scotland. I think feeling valued brings out the best in anyone.

Q12. Do you have any tips or advice for other nurses who are contemplating the move to Saudi Arabia?

I would advise anyone who is in a position to work abroad to experience working in Saudi because it's a calm, safe, warm, exciting place and people appreciate you coming here to work in the hospital.

You meet people from all over the world who arrive excited and want to experience a different environment.

Opportunities to travel around the Middle East and see places you wouldn't have otherwise.

My only advice is if you are thinking about it or want to come, then do it because life is too short. You have everything to gain and only a flight home.

Can I add how lovely the Saudi people are. They are so kind and friendly to me.

They enjoy asking where I am from and speaking about Scotland. I have a good laugh with them, and they are so helpful.

Thank you for helping me come to Saudi I am so happy I came.

April 2024 


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