7-Eleven now… Eleven

Post by Mark

Last year 7-Eleven opened their first location in Kuwait, but I passed by it recently and it looks like they’ve rebranded to just Eleven. I guess they either lost the franchise or were never official and so were forced to rename the place. Awkward.

2019-03-20T12:28:16+03:00Mar 20, 2019|13 Comments

Quality of Living in our Region 2018

Post by Mark

Mercer’s Quality of Living rankings list was recently released and the regional order has pretty much remained unchanged. I thought Saudi Arabia might move up from the previous years because of the recent changes that have taken place there but their ranking hasn’t really changed. Mercer puts together this list by evaluating a number of factors including recreation, housing, economic environment, consumer goods availability, public services and transport, political and social environment, natural environment, socio-cultural environment, school and education and medical and health considerations.

1 – Vienna, Austria
74 – Dubai, United Arab Emirates
78 – Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
105 – Muscat, Oman
110 – Doha, Qatar
126 – Kuwait City, Kuwait
136 – Manama, Bahrain
164 – Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
168 – Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
231 – Baghdad, Iraq

The list above shows Kuwait’s ranking compared to neighboring countries but if you’d like to see how your home country ranks in the world, you can check out the full list on Mercer’s website [Here]

Thanks Basmah

2019-03-20T09:07:51+03:00Mar 20, 2019|10 Comments

Guide: How to update your Civil ID’s name to match your passport’s

Post by Mark

Recently a decision was made to cancel the use of residency stickers inside passports. Instead, you’ll need to have a valid Civil ID card when traveling as a means of verifying your residency. The name on the Civil ID card has to match your name in your passport or you’ll risk being denied travel in or out of Kuwait. Having weird spellings or incorrect data on the Civil ID is pretty common, so if your info doesn’t match your passport, you now have to fix it. Yesterday someone on Reddit posted the steps below on how to go about doing this:

Step 1) Go to the PACI eEnvelope system website, if the website is in Arabic you can change the language to English, there’s an option at the top of the page

Step 2) Click on non-Kuwaiti Renewal

Step 3) Enter your Civil ID and serial no. which is shown on the back

Step 4) You’ll have to verify your mobile no. so they’ll send you a verification SMS

Step 5) Enter all data required (blood type is optional but if that needs changing too then you’ll need to also upload a lab report)

Step 6) Upload the required documents

Step 7) You’ll be sent an application’s reference number to your registered mobile no., which you can use to track your application’s progress

Step 8) Wait and wait, this will take a few days as your application needs to be checked manually, once it’s approved you’ll be sent a link on your mobile to make the payment of KD5, after that you’ll just go have to go to South Surra to replace your old ID with the new one

Thanks Stafa!

2019-03-19T10:45:11+03:00Mar 19, 2019|49 Comments

The Top 20 Films of 2018 (According to Tarek’s humble opinion)

Post by Tarek J

Hey, this is your local film buff checking in on my yearly visit to this blog to spout out my favorite films of the year (because my opinion is right and everyone else is wrong).

Disclaimer: At the time of writing this article, I hadn’t seen the following highly acclaimed films that might have had a spot otherwise: Border, Caphernaum, Minding the Gap, The Rider, and Suspiria

Note: This year has proven to be one of the worst years for Hollywood Big Studio films, but an incredible year for independent cinema. As such, you may have never heard of some of the films listed below, but how boring would it be if I wrote this entire giant article just talking about films you already know. Wouldn’t it be great to be recommended stuff you haven’t heard of, so you can find it in you to take a risk and watch it? Who knows, you might find yourself surprised to discover a gem you would have never searched for otherwise…

Click here to keep on reading…

2019-03-18T12:57:20+03:00Mar 18, 2019|25 Comments

Draewil Car Booking App

Post by Mark

Draewil is a car booking app similar to Uber and Careem, but is meant to compete more with the likes of Grand Limo. They got in touch with me a couple of weeks back and asked me to try them out, and it was perfect timing since I had to drop my Lotus off at the garage to get new brake pads.

One of the biggest advantages Draewil has over Grand Limo is the app itself. It looked better, worked a lot faster and payment is automated since you can add your knet card to the app. I got KD20 credit loaded up into my account by Draewil, and so decided to splurge by ordering their Luxury category vehicle. Draewil has three categories to choose from, executive, luxury and SUV with the availability of each being different as well as the cost. I had dropped my car off at the garage in Al Rai and needed a car to drop me off to my office in the city. Their luxury vehicle needed around 17 minutes to get to me which was long, but ok in my case since I still had some paperwork I needed to sign.

I ended up being picked up by a brand new Lexus LS which is cool, but I was actually hoping to be picked up by one of their new Audi A8’s since I hadn’t been in one of those yet. The car had plenty of legroom and was immaculate, but that makes sense since Draewil is fairly new so their cars are all brand new as well. The ride from Al Rai to Kuwait City ended up taking 18 mins and cost me KD7.250.

The second time I tried them out was the same day when I wanted to head back to the garage to pick up my Lotus. I ended up ordering their executive car and had it pick me up from Crystal Tower in the city. There was a vehicle in the area so it took just 2 minutes to pick me up. This time I was picked up by a Genesis, another car I hadn’t been in before. Surprisingly, the car was as comfortable as the Lexus and even felt a bit more spacious since the Genesis didn’t have a large TV console between me and the driver. The journey again took 18 minutes, but because I chose an executive vehicle, the price came out slightly cheaper at KD6.

So would I use them again? Yeah, probably. I don’t generally use cabs a lot only when I need to drop my car off somewhere like when I want to get detailing done or if I’m servicing it, so I can afford to splurge on a cab on the rare occasion that I need one. The biggest advantage to me for using Draewil over similar luxury car booking services is the app, I like it a lot. It’s really easy to use, I’ve already added my most used destinations to it like my office, my home, the garage etc and I’ve also added my knet card to it. The service is also new so their cars are brand new and they’re still adding more vehicles to their fleet on a monthly basis. At the moment Draewil is only out for iOS devices, but I was told an Android app is being released before the end of the month. If you have an iPhone, you can download the app right now from the Apple Store by clicking [Here]

2019-03-19T11:54:28+03:00Mar 18, 2019|23 Comments

PROMOTED: Trolley Convenience Store

Post by Sponsor

Trolley is one the largest convenience store chains located in Kuwait, with 37+ branches and counting, you might think we’re only at gas stations OULA, KNPC, and ALFA but no, we also have stand-alone stores like AlShaheed park, Platinum GYM’s, Avenues, ‘Noor Complex’ Salem AlMubarak etc…

Trolley is open 24/7 with exclusive items that you can order on through [Talabat]

Available at Trolley:
• Starbucks kiosk
• The Coffee Bean kiosk
• Imported chocolates, sweets and drinks
• Mini toiletries
• Car accessories
• Board games
• Mobile accessories
• Protein bars
• Dunkin Donuts doughnuts
• Food to go (Caesars, Oishii Sushi and Diet Care etc..)

2019-03-18T08:57:30+03:00Mar 17, 2019|0 Comments

Online Driving License Renewal Soon

Post by Mark

Back in January I read that the driving license renewal process will be moving online similar to how the Civil ID renewal process is right now. Looks like its going to happen soon since a few days ago while renewing my car registration I spotted the driving license renewing machines above. This service is going to be available to Kuwaitis first followed by expats at a later stage. Hopefully, by the time I have to renew my license in May this service is going to be up and running because the process right now is a complete mess.

Previously, expats were able to renew their license for 10 years but a couple of years ago they limited it to match your residency (so 1 or 2 years) and that caught the traffic department off guard. They weren’t prepared for the amount of people who would be renewing on a daily basis and so the process became an unorganized mess with extremely long lines and multiple visits. Just thinking about renewing my license is giving me anxiety right now…

2019-03-17T11:21:30+03:00Mar 17, 2019|23 Comments

New Look!

Post by Mark

Yesterday I launched the new and improved look for the blog which I worked on with the team at Wavai. I tried to keep everything mostly in the same place, I just cleaned up and simplified the layout a bit. The biggest change is that the blog is now finally mobile-phone friendly. If you access the blog from your phone (which 65% of you do), then you’re going to see a much simpler and clearer 1-column layout.

There are a lot of issues that still need to be worked out with the new design, and I’m still working on a lot of random little things behind the scenes so please be patient. It’s probably going to take a couple of more weeks for me to finish everything. Once I’m done with the main page I’ll work on applying the new look to all the other sections on the blog like the Events page and Classifieds. For now, let me know what you think.

2019-03-17T08:32:45+03:00Mar 17, 2019|47 Comments