With the recent devaluation of the pound since Brexit, there’s no better time to shop back in the UK than right now. With great prices to tempt us, which shops deliver to the UAE, who offers a reliable delivery service and what are the best tips for bagging a bargain?
To save you hunting high and low, we’ve compiled a list of the Best of British shopping from the comfort of your sofa (and a few other international ones included for good measure). All of these ship their goodies to Dubai and we’ve added a bit of useful info along the way. Get your credit cards ready!
It’s a flat fee of £29 for all year round deliveries which is amazing value if you’re going to be ordering all your home items, top-end clothing and gifts! Deliveries are normally within 7 days and Selfridges can remove the VAT making this a top tip shopping destination for us!
If it’s good enough for the Queen, then it’s good enough for us! The infamous Harrods of Knightsbridge now offers international delivery to the UAE for a flat fee of £25 for international deliveries made within 10-12 days (but often sooner). On top of this, VAT can be removed.
House of Fraser is a great British brand that has a particularly awesome denim shop that stocks over 1,400 pairs of women’s jeans alone. It carries a huge amount of cutting edge labels and will ship to the UAE express (in 6 days) for £20 or standard (10 days) for £10 flat delivery charge, regardless of your order. Deliveries are reliable and this department store covers anything from sunglasses to homeware.
It was a sad day when we heard that The White Company were closing it’s stores in the UAE but the great news is that you can shop online and have it delivered. Hooray! The White Company specialise in high quality cotton including bedding, nursery furnishings, baby and toddler clothing and a simple but refined women’s wear range. Delivery charges are weight based and typically take between 10-14 days. Under 2kg is £20, 2-5kg is £25 and anything over 5kg is charged at a flat fee of £30 making it cost efficient to order multiple items.
Asos have a great selection of high fashion wear for men and women. Standard delivery is just £3 (or free for orders overs £20) but this is normally sent by surface mail, (which has led to problems in the past) whereas the express option comes recommended as a more robust service that is £20 delivered directly to your door by courier.
The Book Depository is an online bookshop and the delivery charge is free for all orders. The estimated dispatch time is shown on each product page under the ‘add to basket’ button and they dispatch all items separately, (even if you have ordered together). If you’re not in an immediate hurry, this can be a great way to buy your books in bulk – just make sure you add a PO Box and not a physical address.
Here you will find all things beauty – Make Up, Nails, Hair, Tools and Brushes, Skin Care and even something for the man in your life. Brands include Decleor, Essie, Biosilk and Bare Minerals amongst hundreds of others.
They ship for free to the UAE for orders over 200 AED, and orders take around a week to arrive.
This website in the Netherlands comes highly recommended for all things baby related (car seats and buggies etc), and they ship everything to the UAE tax free! As delivery is by DHL, larger items may be costly, but can still be cheaper than buying here because you’re not paying the tax. Deliveries normally take around a week and savings can be up to 40% cheaper.
British favourite, Boden, offers worldwide shipping in 8-10 days for just £12. Now there’s no excuse not to stock up on lots of high quality, lovely bits and bobs with Mini Boden for the children, Johnnie B for teens, or the great classic styles for both women and men.
You can choose unfinished lengths for men’s trousers or specify the exact length of trousers and Boden will ensure they’re turned up to your exact requirements. They offer petite and longer lengths for women’s wear and they have regular sales and discounts so be sure to join their mailing lists for notification.
However, Boden deliveries can sometimes be a bit hit or miss. If you email their customer service department and ask for your package to be tracked, they’ll gladly oblige as their customer service is normally second to none. And the best bit? Their one year return policy is just what we need living overseas.
This is a firm favourite with British Mums so we’re super happy that they charge a flat fee of £10 for international shipping! It excludes electronics, furniture, fabric, foods, beauty and nursery travel (possible through their Oxford Street export department) but most things are included. It arrives speedily (normally within 5 days to your door) which is really convenient. Don’t forget to register for your My John Lewis membership card that invites you to get rewards and surprise treats along the way!
If you order via the Oxford Street Branch, they will remove the VAT for you but they calculate a unique shipping charge based on what you have ordered, rather than the flat fee. Depending on what you’re buying, it can work out cheaper paying the delivery than what the VAT would have been, so check first. You can email the Oxford Street Export Department on email@example.com to find out the exact charges and you simply can’t fault John Lewis for their excellent customer service.
The thing to look out for on EBay is to make sure that the seller will ship to the UAE and that they won’t sting you with the shipping charges. If you shop around and check the charges by seller, you can be sure to grab some really unique, hard-to-find bargains here! Our top tip is that if you’re prepared to wait a month or so for shopping from China, and you select a physical address you can send things to (for example, a U.K home or Shop & Ship address), you can scoop some brilliant pieces direct from the factories for just a fraction of the retail price by selecting “worldwide” on the filters.
If you haven’t checked out Etsy, you’re missing out! Etsy is an online craft market full of gorgeous inspiration and you can find some really unique, beautiful gifts, party items, clothing (particularly for little girls) and accessories here. A lot of sellers will ship to the UAE so before you search for an item, make sure you select United Arab Emirates on the “Ship To” section on the left-hand side to see the shipping charges.
Feel Unique is an online beauty store that includes brands such as Urban Decay, Stella Mcartney, Wonderbrow, Burt’s Bees, Gatineau and Kardashian Beauty (as well as many, many more). They deliver to the UAE free for orders over £60 and if you’re in no immediate rush, this is a brilliant find! This Christmas they have 3 for 2 offers on Elemis, Decleor and St Tropez and a 20% saving for orders over £100.
Hobby Craft is the perfect one stop shop for art and crafts supplies. The fact that Hobby Craft deliver to the UAE is great for all crafty mums, so whether it’s framing your children’s artwork or making the next Easter bonnet, they’ll have us covered! Delivery charges start from €9 or $20 and are based on weight and standard delivery is 5-8 days and Air Express is 5-10 days (so not necessarily any quicker than standard).
Liz Earle cosmetics will deliver to the UAE for a flat fee of £15 and they will also deduct the VAT from your order, which means that if you’re ordering in bulk, you should make a great saving!
Standard delivery (10-14 working days) is £15 and International tracked service (10-14 working days) is £21
Monsoon is great for little people’s outfits as well as special occasion wear for mums. Monsoon will deliver to the UAE for £20 for standard delivery (that takes 5-9 days) for £20 but this is free for any orders over £75. Express delivery (4-5 days) is £20
Net-a-Porter is the luxury fashion destination, where you will find anything from the latest clothing lines to trendy bags and shoes. They charge a flat rate for express shipping of £20 delivery charge that normally arrives 3-4 days from the order date. Be sure to sign up to receive their sale notifications as their sales are THE best!
First of all, you must change your Amazon address to your UAE one and only then you’ll see straight away whether the seller delivers to the UAE, or not.
Amazon delivers a good range of items here by UPS but it can sometimes work out costly, so it’s certainly worth shopping around on the site to get a bargain. Music, DVD’s, gifts and toys are always popular, and the good thing is that Amazon remove the VAT and the delivery is reliable (within a week). Bargains have included a Sleepyhead Grand for 850 AED, including delivery (whereas local prices can be around 1,200 AED) so make sure you have a good shop around!
New Look will deliver to the UAE for the following shipping fees: Standard (8 days) free for orders over €65, (otherwise it’s €10) and Express (2-4 days) is free for orders over €90, otherwise it’s €18.50
The prices on this website are in UAE Dirhams, but because they are excluding VAT, you will find some items much cheaper than back home (and you can’t say that very often!). It is also cheaper than shopping in store at Next stores locally, and delivery usually takes 2-3 days and is free for orders over 120 AED.
This is a wonderful website for personalised gifts as it has some unusual, quirky items that you may not find locally. All of the items sold are from private sellers and a lot of them will ship to the UAE. The delivery cost is calculated based on the destination, size and the weight of the product. The cost is shown on the relevant product page and on the checkout page after selecting your home country as the UAE.
River Island delivers to the UAE. Some British mums have commented that it only takes a few days for the parcels to arrive, yet others mentioned that it took a while. There are no delivery prices or options on the website so if you are in a hurry for something, it might be worth contacting them first.
Waterstones source an impeccable range of books and are great for pre-ordering new release titles. They will deliver outside of the UK by courier and it takes around 7-10 working days. It costs £12.50 + £2 per additional item.
British Mums favourite, Whistles will deliver gorgeous party frocks straight to your door in the UAE for a flat fee of £8 (it’s also free for orders over £200) and normally take around 5-7 working days to arrive.
Reiss direct you to their “rest of world” section of the website that then charges in USD which can vary slightly to UK prices (exchange rate dependent). Shipping to the UAE costs a flat fee of $25 USD and is couriered by DHL, in 4 days.
This fabulous baby and toddler store includes much loved brands like Jellycat and their own range of super stylish mini clothes. Their delivery charge is £50 to the UAE and takes 10 days, making Shop & Ship a more cost effective option.
No British kitchen is complete without the help of the much trusted Lakeland store. International delivery to the UAE is charged at £25 for orders up to £20 and for orders over £20, you need to add an additional £3 for every subsequent £5 spent. The cost of VAT is deducted upon checkout.
Classic women’s wear store Hobbs charges a £20 flat fee delivery to the UAE, regardless of your order. They do not deduct the VAT and shipping takes around ten days.
The ones who don’t ship…
Many UK based stores do not currently offer shipping to the UAE. This is either due to local trade agreements or due to the logistical implications. This includes orders by Debenhams, Matalan, Primark, TKMaxx, Top Shop, Asda, Clarks, Laura Ashley, Mamas and Papas, Marks & Spencers, Jigsaw, Anthropolgie, Russell & Bromley, British Home Store, Disney Store, Warehouse, H&M, Harvey Nichols, Argos and more who do not offer international delivery to the UAE. However, you can always place an online order and send to your Shop and Ship address if the UK stores are offering a different range to what you can find locally.
Essential Shopping Tips
If the shop you really want to buy from doesn’t deliver to Dubai, there’s always Shop & Ship, which is a shipping service offered by Aramex. The way it works is that you pay a once-off registration fee of $50 (which is sometimes discounted) and then you are given your own address in the UK, the US, China, Germany, Singapore and lots of other countries as well as a unique code that identifies you. You are then able to shop online in pretty much every country and have the package delivered to your Shop & Ship address and as long as you remember your unique code, Aramex will then courier it directly to your doorstep.
It’s very reliable and as long as your parcels aren’t super heavy, the prices aren’t too bad either (approx 45 AED per half kilo). As long as you have the item weight, you can check delivery prices before ordering, to see if it is cost effective for you or not.
Borderfree is a shipping company in the US that will ship to the UAE from the following US Stores:
Gymborie (Children’s clothing), Gap, Nordstrom, Macy’s, Bloomingdales, Target (the second largest discount store in the US), Barney’s, Banana Republic and many more and the shipping costs vary depending on weight.
Post or Courier Service?
Another thing to always bear in mind is how the items will be sent to you because this makes a huge difference in deciding whether to send it to your home address or your PO Box. If it is being sent by post you should always use your PO Box, otherwise you may never see your parcel again as it could end up in the depths of the Karama Post Office, never to see the light of day again!
There’s a customs limit of 1,000 AED per order (which includes delivery cost and any insurance paid) so you will have to pay charges for anything more than this amount so always bear that in mind because you don’t want to be stung with a bill on delivery as well.
So with all that temptation on offer, we’re off to place our orders. Happy shopping everyone!
If you know of a great store that delivers to the UAE, please share it with us by commenting below or if you would like to blog for us please email firstname.lastname@example.org as we would love to hear from you!