A survey carried out in Saudi Arabia shows many expatriates having difficulty in making Saudis their friends. The question asked in the questionnaire was about the difficulties faced by the expats in making the Saudi people their friends. The survey was conducted among the majority of the expats in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The survey was held by an online expat community group called Inter-Nation across 195 countries, with the total number of respondents 14,388. The result of the research shows that only 38 percent responded positively that making friends with the local people is easy.
How friendly Saudis are with Expats? Although 73 percent clearly answered that Saudi citizens are welcoming and friendly to the non-resident and 30 percent called them “very friendly” whereas 62 percent expats think that it is very difficult to become friends with Saudis.
01-Language Barriers: Ali Asad Bhutto has lived in Saudi Arabia for five years. He is 26 years of age and he is a Pakistani. He said that he has only 3 Saudis in his friend’s circle. He explained that the reason behind this is the language issue and difference of lifestyle.
02-Not having enough money: Bhutto explained the reason behind not getting comfortable with a Saudi friend is that they hang around all night. I can’t have enough money to do that. Moreover, the problem to join each other’s groups or companies, are the issues.
03-Cultural Issues: Saudi people never mind to have you as friends or you won’t mind either being friends with them, but after some time you both feel that this friendship may not long further and may not make good friends. In my opinion, all these factors play a part in creating this bubble.
04-No Mutual Interest: An Indian 23 years of age, Anil Jacob was born and brought up here in Saudi Arabia, said that he has many Saudi friends. He explained that the reason that the majority of foreigner residents may not be able to make Saudi friends because they both have no mutual interests.
He said that for me making a Saudi my friend is just like making buddies with any other race or nationality. It might be difficult for others because of certain reasons like maybe they just don’t try for it or maybe have uncommon interests.
05-The Population of Saudis: According to Nasif Kayed who is the managing director for Cultural Understanding in the Sheikh Mohammed Centre the population of Saudi citizens is less as compared to foreign residents in the country. The lesser population of the Saudis people is also a key factor in this issue.
06-Time Consuming: On the other hand, Nasif said that if any person wants to have Saudi friends, they should spend time hanging out the places of Saudi citizens.
Kayed said “When it comes to our way of life, we are very simple and down to earth people. There are many who live in a community including high-density sales outlets and private residential homes but still living a simple life.”
The recent research shows in case of easiness of finding friends that Saudi Arabia was rated at 60th rank out of 64 countries. Saudi Arabia, are at the least ranking to make friends.