Category Archives: How to

How to add your son as a dependent born abroad in Kuwait in 8 steps

Belated Happy Father’s Day to all dad’s out there.

In keeping up with tradition, i’ll write a BRIEF about the requirements to add your son as a dependent, if your son was born abroad and came into Kuwait on a visit visa.

Step 1: request your company to type up a request to add son as dependent.

You will also need the following documents:

  1. Work Permit – also available with your company mandoubs.
  2. Original entry visa + copy.
  3. Civil ID copy both you and your wife.
  4. Passport copy both you and your wife.
  5. Passport original + copy for your child.
  6. Attested and translated (if required) marriage certificate.
  7. Attested and translated (if required) birth certificate for child. (FYI: Translation is about 3KD per page and takes at least one day to complete).

Bundle all these papers together and head out to your local residency area; Hawally used to be the roundabout near City Center Salmiya, but has since moved to Mishref. So you head over there first.

Step 2: go EARLY. During Ramadan they started work officially at 10AM, however we had to queue up at 8:00AM to get a number to submit our documents. If you show up at 10, you won’t be given a number, and you’ll to come back tomorrow. They start taking in applications by the 10’s, and early, so they start before 10AM.

Step 3: once you get to the counter, the guy will stamp “sponsor came in person” and “to be raised to head of reception”, you’ll find a sign that says Head of Reception, go there with your documents, he’ll stamp “no objection” for you.

Head back to the counter that sent you there in the first place, he’ll take a closer look at your papers and give you another stamp and a signature. He’ll also ask what number child this is, fees for first child are 100KD.

Next you head inside and take a number for “computer processing حاسب الي”.

Step 4: once your number is up, present your documents, do not make my mistake and take a number for new borns, that is a whole other different thing.

So, you present your docs, they’ll print a paper for you with your child’s unified number. At the same time, a request is processed for you to get a civil ID number.

go to the PACI website after two days and check if the civil ID number is issued. Once the civil ID number is issued, write it down and head to the Health office (Behind Mubarak Hospital in Jabriya) to pay 31KD for health insurance. KEEP THIS DOCUMENT SAFE! YOU WILL NEED IT FOR RESIDENCY.

They will give you the grey card as well.

Step 5: head to any printing shop and ask for the health check document, they’ll type it up in your child’s name. Take that sheet and head back to Mishref.

Remember the head of Reception? Go back and see him again, ask him to stand that document for you, he will. You don’t need to go early, later during the day, the crowd requiring his attention will have thinned.

Step 6: take that stamped paper and head towards route 85, right across from the NBK branch there you will find a place called “ports – موانئ”, where you will take this document, along with a copy of your civil ID, a copy of your child’s visitor visa, a copy of your child’s passport and the original.

Here you will need to pay 10KD to buy a stamp.

Once your number is called, present your documents, along with the original passport – they’ll stick the stamp inside and stamp it, then send you to room 8. at room 8 they’ll ask for your child’s age, if they are under 2 months old, you are good to go and skip to the next step.

If they are over two months, they will print a document for you to take to your local clinic – مستوصف where your child received their vaccination. If the child was vaccinated, go there, go straight to the vaccination folks, give them the paper, they’ll sign it (re. CHILD MUST HAVE BEEN VACCINATED) and send you to another office for a stamp.

Step 7: take that paper, stamped by the clinic or if you skipped here because your child is under two months, head to room 4, which is basically the window in the corner of the room where you presented your documents, right behind the stamp machines. Give them the papers, they’ll then take them, thank you and say head back to Mishref for the final fight with the dragon.

Step 8: show up early, between 9:30 and 10. Immediately take a number for 1) Payment and 2) Residency.

go pay the required amount in CASH despite the sign outside saying KNET, crazy I know. you’ll get a receipt, now sit and wait, watch the numbers role.

When your number is up, head to the counter, present your documents along with the paper you got from paying the 31KD for the medical insurance, smile, go outside.

After a while a cop will come out calling names, receive your passport, check residency, check expiry, smile, leave.

 

Playing the air-ticket market – how to buy the cheapest tickets

The price differentials, travel date 25-Feb-16.

The price differentials, travel date 25-Feb-16.

Everyone claims to know how to buy the cheapest tickets – the truth is there is no tried and tested way to always guarantee, there are however certain tricks you can deploy to ensure you get the best possible ticket at the best possible price.

Step 1: HAVE A PLAN

you cannot score good tickets on a whim, you need to review the calendar, check when you want to go on vacations, and select a destination.

Step 2: SELECT A DESTINATION

some people have a passport that allows them to spin the globe and go wherever their finger lands, others need to apply for visas. In either case, start applying a good month or so before your date of flying. To base your trip on your budget, check www.kayak.com/explore (link) for ROUGH ticket prices during certain periods to destinations around you.

Step 3: SET UP AN ALARM

you can freely track changing ticket prices on Kayak, Dohop, Expedia, Skyscanner etc. whereby you set your dates, and watch for changes.

Now, at this point, it becomes tricky – PRICES FLUCTUATE! if you watch the fluctuations, you will understand why airlines do not allow you to transfer your ticket to someone else.

We had selected a destination and started watching it, the lowest price per person was KD 125 on Qatar Airways. QA announced a bonanza on tickets, so we waited. During that period, prices went up and down by about 1KD.

Suddenly, as the bonanza kicked in, instead of prices dropping, they suddenly sky-rocketed to DOUBLE WHAT THEY WERE!

Which leads me to believe that airline websites have cookies that enable them to hike up the prices based on increased traffic/ purchases on their website.

At this point I was kicking myself for waiting so long, and silently cursing my luck.

Once the bonanza finished, prices went down. All this time I as merely checking my email for daily/ weekly updates on ticket prices.

The problem was however, the “class of ticket” i wanted was no longer available. Or the time (flight) was not available.

Two factors influence ticket price – class and date – by class we mean econo-saver, econo-super-saver etc. and by date we mean different dates.

Lo and behold, the ticket I wanted was back online, and for the same price I had seen a few weeks earlier, I quickly nabbed it up and ended up paying KD 250 for two return tickets to Cyprus on QA at the PERFECT TIME (leaving 5AM) and leaving Cyprus in the evening.

I learnt to be patient, to always check online and to know when to jump in.

Prices have now since gone lower, however the attributes are not the same, the “To” journey is now 13hours as opposed to 7, which is a killer in itself.

By monitoring prices, you will know what the average price is, and once you reach that price again…

Whatsapp now allows Single Chat Mute

“There is no denying the power of peoples complaints in large numbers”.

Before we stood up in unison and said no to the constant barrage of tings and chirps brought about by multiple messages in groups, Whatsapp responded by silencing for a week, and now we have the power to silence these groups for an entire year.

Now, Whatsapp further benefit the masses by giving us the ability to silence certain chats, and not necessarily for malicious purposes – you could silence the chat with your BFF so as not to keep getting pings as you are already checking your phone for their response.

Whatsapp Mute

The Ultimate Android App for All Androiders – #Moboclean

Attention, THIS IS NOT A TECH BLOG! Although sometimes, we tend to dabble in things outside our comfort zone when the situation really demands it, and so I am here to talk to you about – Moboclean.

I know, it sounds like a failed sales pitch from the beginning right? Did I mention it is free?

Got your attention now right? Lets drive the point home.

images

The reason many users gravitate toward Android as opposed to Apple is customization – with Android you can root your phone and update everything – a new OS, theme etc. whereas Apple does not provide such customization.

Now, we are all familiar with rooting right? No? Jailbreaking for Apple? Still no? Well, despite allowing users the absolute right to mess with everything with the phone, all phones purchased come with firmware – as in the software belongs to the brand you brought it from i.e. Sony, Samsung, HTC, LG, Huwaei etc. so sometimes, in order to get max customization privileges, you need to root your phone.

images (1)

However when you root your phone you run the risk of turning it into a brick and losing the warranty.

Why would you need to root?

like we said earlier, phones come with firmware, and apps downloaded come with strings – for example, they set themselves to automatically start up with the phone, to send anonymous statistics, to access your calendar, contacts, number etc. To some people who view this as a huge invasion of privacy, this poses quite the problem.

Moboclean solves that problem.

Whereas rooting is risky – Moboclean carries 0 risk (at face value). What it does is it roots the application itself and gives you superuser permission, in certain cases, to decide whether or not an app is allowed to run automatically, access bluetooth, location, number etc.

download

What is in it for me?

Believe it or not, this saves battery. I sh*t you not, I have been using Moboclean for the past few days, and already the battery life is considerably longer. Initially it used to be great (running on Xperia Z2) but after the latest update (as a result of the privacy bug with android) the battery drain has shifted into overdrive and before whereas my phone would last almost a full 24 hours and still have 20% or so juice left, it started requiring an afternoon pick-me-up charge.

How does Moboclean work?

Again, as we are not tech junkies, we can only speculate on what happens, as we explained above the app reinstalls all your other apps and tweaks them to the point where you are allowed to set their internal settings yourself.

Now this does not work for all apps, and it doesn’t affect firmware apps, but that is ok because you can manually disable those from your applications settings – I don’t think it is possible to keep an app installed and disable it, or atleast it is not on Xperia Z2.

Problems, if any?

Glad you mentioned it! In our usage of Moboclean, we did come across the following problems:

1) the uninstall/reinstall, although automatic, sometimes results in your “personalized settings” getting deleted, such as Viber favorites etc.

2) Your passwords would need to be re-entered for everything – so make sure you know them before uninstalling.

3) You would be required to know how to interact with the app (all the titles in it are self explanatory btw.) in order to resolve any problem that might arise as a result of the reinstallation process – for example, I denied my tracking apps access to my location without my permission, so even if the satellites connect the map does not load, so I had to open the settings and set it to always acquire my location etc.

4) Whatsapp will take time to load! Be patient! It is preferable to backup all your convo’s before uninstalling – I set mine to backup everyday at 4AM, but then all the conversations from 4AM till the time of the uninstall-reinstall will be lost.

5) Once you disguise your location it is impossible to change back to “prompt”.

You can read up more on this magical app here and you can download it from this link here (note it is not available on the Playstore).

Delayed Flights and Fighting for your Rights – a Why to Guide

We are all familiar with the internet approved “how to” guides for everything from cleaning your closet to torching your midsection to building a model rocket capable of reaching the stratosphere (link). Let us give rise to a new phenomena, which may already exist, I have no clue as I haven’t Googled it yet, but lets assume its my own concoction – the “why to” guide.

Why you should do x-y-z and not simply ignore it and move on with your life.

Readers of this blog would be no strangers to my current strife with a certain airline regarding several problems with them.

As if the world was taking note of my plight, BBC published an article entitled, “Delayed airlines passengers ‘missing out on millions in compensation” (link) and it made me think, airlines should not get away with this. How many times in our lives were our flights delayed, a couple of minutes, sometimes long hours, with nothing from the airline save an apology and a cold slice of Pizza?

It is time to hold people accountable. I am not saying this is the road to easy money, but it is a step in the right direction for accountability (remember this word when Captain America – Civil War comes out in 2016!).

Just recently another landmark article was posted, “Ryanair faces big payouts after losing flight delay case ” (link).

A lot of people are familiar with Ryanair as the 9th worst airline in the world (link), well apparently they had a little disclaimer on its tickets that tells passengers they only have 2 years to try to take action for flight delays against the company. this did not sit well with authorities as the standard time is 6 years, so the ruling was just passed to scrap the 2 year thing and give everyone 6 years to take action – as per EU laws. The law of the land supersedes that of the company.

Why is this important to you to know? A lot of airlines try to hide behind fancy wording on their tickets that they are not responsible in case of x, y, z etc. but they are. You will only know this if you take the step to take action against them. For example, all parking lots/ valet areas have an infamous saying that they are not responsible for the vehicle, right? Guess what, legally that is BS as they are responsible – they are taking money to provide a service, so if the car is damaged or anything, it is on their heads. Same with airlines.

Let us see where this goes, all I can say at the moment is, POWER TO THE PEOPLE.

How to Unlock PDFs

In this day in age, almost everything and anything can be found online. Where there is a will, there is a way, and the best way is to discover the things in life that are FREE.

How many times have you found novels/ textbooks that you desperately crave, gained them in the soft form of PDF, only to discover that they are annoyingly protected against printing?

Even in cases where you PURCHASE the material legally, they are locked to prevent printing so as to bar you from replicating the PDF in bulk and selling it.

That is a thing of the past now; as everything has moved to The Cloud, computing has become a breeze.

So long as the info you seek to unlock is not personal in nature (in which case what is it doing as a PDF anyway, nerd?) you can mosey on to ww.smallpdf.com (link), upload your PDF files (mine was roughly 35MB in size), wait a few mins, then redownload it; with no lock on printing. They provide a variety of other services too:

Capture

As always, use this knowledge for good!

When should you replace your running shoe?

Albeit being the oldest sport in human history, the question of when to change your running shoe has never been truly answered.

The thing is, it varies from person to person, climate to climate, running form to running form etc.

Some say that like tires, your shoes should be changed based on time used (i.e. every 6 months), but what if you run every single day for those six months? Others say you should change your shoes after running a certain distance in them, but not everyone measures the distance they run (although it is as simple as turning on an app in your phone mind you).

Let us take a look at the following examples:

image

Here is a selection of my running shoes, after much tryouts, I decided that the Adidas Adizero is the best fit for me, and for the sake of diversity, I went with the ASICS Volt 33. That way we have created a level playing field by testing models that are similar.

 

My first pair were the white Adizero’s, fortunately when I started using them I was already well into my running phase and eager to measure distance, speed, time etc. Hence I had a rough idea of the mileage for each shoe. The Adizero lasted for roughly 360-370KM. Then it began to literally fall apart, as you can see below:

image

 The mesh began to come apart, and slowly but surely I began to notice that my calves, ankles and/or knees were hurting, when they did not hurt before.

That is the most critical point of decision; you begin to experience pain due to the support of the shoe having deteriorated.

So I set them aside as walking shoes and got a new pair, the Black ones.

I just recently ran 21.6KM in the Black pair, I have had them for ages and their mileage atm is a staggering 693KM.

So we can pretty much throw out the theory that life expectancy is based on mileage.

At certain points in time I did fear that my new Adizero’s were also ready for the big track in the sky, as I would run for distances, stop for a sip of water, and then encounter pain in my left knee.

Twas a false alarm.

Next we have the ASICS, my first pair was the black pair (top left):

image

So far I have done 660KM in them, and they were feeling great, except for the part where they started to come tear up on the sides where my pinky toe would be (wide feet, as you can see I have a special knot tying technique which makes a difference to a certain extent). I quick visit to the local cobbler and half a KD later, and the spread of the tear was stopped. However, it started to come apart from numerous other angles, signalling the supposed end of its life. I still use it on the treadmill when I am too lazy to run outside (which is rarely).

The new pair of ASICS is still going strong, also the same model.

So, unfortunately the only true way to test the integrity and stability of a running shoe is to TRY IT OUT. You will notice that your legs are beginning to ache quickly, and that is not a problem so long as you do not prolong your over-usage of the shoes.

Keep your running shoes on until YOU feel the pain, and once you do, first analyze whether the cause of the pain could have been any other factor other than the shoe. For example, it could be an underlying condition, it could be you mis-stepped or landed incorrectly. Once you cross out all other possible reasons for your pains, only then should you take the decision to retire a shoe.

And there you have it.

How to Update Viber Contact List

Viber

Viber is an app that has fast replaced all “traditional” MTC networks, erasing all borders around the world and giving everyone the luxury of making calls to family and friends near and far. And unlike its predecessors/competitors Tango and its friends, Viber is here to stay.

Contested to be an app of Israeli Ingenuity to gather info, Viber is used by millions around the world.

The major problem several people face with Viber however is updating the contact list. You can only call contacts that have Viber, and it is extremely annoying to receive calls from contacts that have Viber and find yourself unable to call back because according to your phone, “contact is not on Viber“.

What to do?

Simple.

1) Delete the contact from your phone.

2) Add them again. (whether you use + or 00 is irrelevant)

3) Go to Viber app. Find the contacts page. Click menu – Update Contacts.

Voila.

How to Celebrate your Birthday

Birthdays are a strange occurrence. They represent a bittersweet moment, a joyous celebration despite the ominous connotations they bring forth with them such as the passing of age and loss of youthfulness.

As of 2002, I celebrated my birthday by smoking a lone cigar; an activity I knew would definitely shorten my life expectancy; however it seemed a good way to celebrate. Starting 2012 however, I decided to do the exact opposite. They say smoke shortens your life expectancy whereas exercise increases it. I chose to exercise.

Last year I turned 26, in celebration I ran 26KM. It was an arduous experiment, my greatest distance to date, 3hrs18mins of constant movement. I decided to add a KM for every year on every birthday.

April 21st I turned 27, this time however, I decided to go all out and run a full marathon of 42.2KM.

My resolve was strengthened by the encouragement of my running group, the Q8FootSoldiers. One member in particular, Adam Ayesh, would remind me every morning of how many days I had left to “The Great 42”.

On D-Day, I was aroused from sleep by the ringing of my lazy alarm, oblivious to the task I had set at hand; persistently filling my ears with annoyance to the point that I was required to make the conscious physical effort to silence it, removing me from the land of dreams completely.

I lay in bed for the next 15 minutes, my body desperately attempting to convince my mind to drift back to sleep, to not put it through the arduous torture of a 42KM that it had never experienced. My body begged and pleaded, and had it not been for my heart stepping in and saying, it shall be done, I would have most likely fallen back to sleep. I forsook the usual morning pick-me-up of coffee as it does terrible things to long distance runners.

Arriving at the starting point, the intersection of the Fahaheel Expressway (Road 30) with the 6th Ring Road in good timing, as the sun was just about rising; I set about finding a parking spot and synchronizing my equipment.

For the journey I had packed 30 dates in packs of 3, placed inside a weight belt that was devoid of any weights, and a lone 330ml water bottle. The dates would provide energy during the run, and as I was not used to drinking water for running 25KM, I rationalized I would only need a small amount by the end. How wrong I was.

At 5:40am, I set out to conquer my quest.

The first few KMs were relaxing. I ran into Adam somewhere in Salwa and he selflessly followed me on his bicycle, making sure to keep the traffic away from me, as well as document the journey on film. Had it not been for Adam, I would not have lasted the distance, as he also replenished my meager water supply which I had severely underestimated given the weather conditions that set in.

The first 10KM was knocked out in 50mins; previously my fastest 10KM was in 45mins, so the law of energy consumption was being followed. At 21.1KM, the halfway point, I was at 1hr42mins, previous record being 1hr35min.

At exactly Souk Sharq, I had to rely on Adam to replenish my water supply. Before reaching the Palace I noticed that the sprinklers were turned on for the sidewalk gardens, and the effect they drew with a myriad of rainbows was intoxicating, mesmerizing me like a siren song, and I ran through the sprinklers, getting a much needed cooling factor.

Past the point of 25KM, my knees began to protest and my shins began to tire. As the music steadily flowed into my aural canals, I persisted to push forward. Adam’s constant motivation was a breath of fresh air as well. As we reached Kuwait city, the KPC building came into view, and the final leg of the journey began.

My legs were screaming at me to stop. The Nike+Running App lady on my iPod urged me to continue.

We reached a traffic light where Adam pointed to a sign and asked me to read it, in English it read “Detour Up Ahead”, but Adam corrected me saying it read “Greatness Up Ahead”.

We arrived at KPC with 7KM to go to complete the 42. The sun was blazing down upon us, sapping our strength through the pores of our skin, relentlessly beating down upon our tired minds but unable to faze our determined spirits. We ran around the garden near KPC, Adam discarding his bike and joining me on foot. When I would falter, he would urge me on.

At long last, the final 200M was joyously received with a sprint after 42KM crossed; there was a little left in the tank for one last hurrah, a dash toward determination, a proclamation that any obstacle no matter how demanding can be overcome with the proper mindset. The final verdict was I had maintained a steady speed of 5mins per KM, 165 strides per minute; Total time: 3hrs30mins.

It was then that another savior from the Q8FootSoldiers came to our rescue; Cristian Craita, one of the first few to run from the northern border of Kuwait to the South, and the coach that guides me. He arrived bearing refreshments, replenishment for lost sugar and fluids, besides the ones that Adam had been carrying on his back for the entire distance.

Our personal goals can be accomplished with the help of friends. Had it not been for both of them, this goal would never have been accomplished.

Afterward, upon receiving a shower of congratulatory comments from the FootSoldiers, and on the day of my birthday, I came to realize just how amazing this group of individuals was, as they bamboozled me into a surprise birthday party with the following centerpiece grabbing the group’s attention:

Q8FootSoldiers Birthday Cake

 

The Q8FootSoldiers are not just a group of friends, they are family.

@KitKatArabia Search for The Arab Comedian!

With reality TV getting more than its fare share of media airtime, it is time for yet another global search to make its way to the Arab Shores!

Presenting KitKatComedyBreak – the search for the next big Arab Comedian (not literally BIG, some of them do tend to watch their weight)!

Ever since my first stand up routine last month at Isma’ani’s Open Mic Night, I’ve been itching to see if I have what it takes to be a true comic, so I submitted a demo of my performance, which goes a little something like this:

Will we have what it takes to go forward?

Only time will tell!

Enjoy and be vocal in your opinion! I WANT TO KNOW!

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

September 2011 ( View complete archive page )

error: Sorry, Ctrl+C/V disabled; if you wish to use this content please contact us :)
%d bloggers like this: