Abu Dhabi - Post Report Question and Answers

Is this a good city for LGBT expatriates? Why or why not?

I don’t think you are allowed to show your affection publicly (gay or not), but I’m sure there are all types of groups here, but people can't be as open here as, for example, in Europe or in the US. - Jun 2019

I hear it is okay if you don't advertise yourself. Homosexuality is illegal so it is a risk but there apparently is community - Sep 2017

Homosexuality is illegal in Islam, but that doesn't stop nature so I'm sure there are lots of under the radar options. - Jun 2015

There's more of an underground culture than outsiders might be aware of (including a nightclub), but it's pretty much just Arab expats with a few Westerners, all mostly pretty young. There is not much for older couples or women. - May 2013

Discretion would be necessary. - Jul 2012

Neither impossibly bad nor great. If you come with some contacts and access to the mostly underground scene, it can be okay; Arabic speakers will have access to the surprising number of Arab expats. That said, it's all very hush-hush, even compared to Dubai, and of course local culture is highly homophobic on the surface. The U.S. Embassy is extremely supportive, although handicapped by local refusal to automatically grant visas to same-sex spouses/partners (work-arounds have been found). - Aug 2011

No. It's a conservative muslim country; gays are at risk although they definitely exist underground. - Jul 2011

There is a gay community here, but it is kept very low key because homosexuality goes against what is culturally acceptable. Most gay people find Dubai more friendly, but even there it is not advisable to flaunt it. - Nov 2010

This is a muslim country so there is no tolerance for this lifestyle. - Jan 2010

Men regularly hold hands with one another, but they say it is not gay. UAE does not recognize gay couples, but it is harder for an unmarried man and woman to live together than for two males or two females. - Aug 2009

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