Mel, serving husband John and children Annie (5) and Eva (3) tell us about their Army family life in Oman’s capital city, Muscat…
How long have you been an Army family?
Time in Oman:
Since August 2017.
How many other military families live in Muscat?
There are a number of British families and unaccompanied Service personnel working for the Loan Service Team Oman. Most live in either Muscat or Salalah, but there are also a few scattered elsewhere.
What’s your quarter like?
Really nice! We live in a large four-bedroom, semi-detached villa with other Loan Service families on a compound. There’s a clubhouse and a swimming pool. The kids love playing with all the other children outside and in the pool.
Are there employment/training opportunities?
They’re quite limited as working visas are difficult to obtain, but some of us have been able to find work. There are opportunities to learn Arabic and online study is also an option.
What about schools and childcare?
There are some very good international schools in Muscat which follow the British curriculum. My daughters go to a relatively new school close to our compound. School starts early at 7.30am and finishes at about 2.30pm. For the younger children, there are very nice nurseries. After-school care is a lot more difficult to access.
Where do Army families get together?
Muscat is a very sociable place. There are always a number of socials in our own clubhouse and pool area that keep us entertained – we always find a reason to celebrate! There’s the annual single Service ball, held in one of the luxury hotels, and lots of other opportunities to get together. It’s what you make of it!
Who supports families?
The in-country Loan Service team supports us and families also support each other. It’s a great community.
What’s the best thing about living in Oman?
Definitely the outdoor life. Oman is a beautiful country with deserts, mountains, wadis, sea and much more to explore. It’s also a very cosmopolitan place – in our daughter’s school there are 61 nationalities and we have made friends with many of them.
Would you recommend Oman as a family posting?
100 per cent. We fell in love with the beauty of this country and its welcoming and gentle people. We live a peaceful life here and can provide our children with so many opportunities to explore and see the world through different eyes. Do not let false perceptions alter reality; come and experience it for yourself!