It was my daughter’s first birthday when it struck me for the first time. As I was happily lighting candles on a barbie fondant cake, a guest came forward and gushed excitedly, ‘Can’t believe she is one already, you must have enrolled her in a school by now.’ I froze. The birthday didn’t seem so happy an occasion then. I questioned my sanity and my guest’s too.

Turns out, she wasn’t totally wrong. Dubai has more schools than it does cultures so one is definitely spoiled for choice. There are multiple schooling options to effectively choose from but what I didn’t know at the time was the heartache that went into making that choice.

For me – like any regular parent – were two focal points:  – a priority list and my wallet size. While I always had a mental checklist of what I wanted (and didn’t want) in my child’s school, I felt the acute shortage of a tool enabling me to effectively compare schools and their offerings.

Schooling in Dubai is an expensive deal and its not the ostensible costs that dent your pocket; its the hidden ones. Like all other expenses – for education – there is only “that much” that one can dish out, in which you would want the very best for your child. So in a myriad of school options, what’s the best way to pick & choose? doffs its cap – This regional online comparison portal offers a list of schools in all emirates across UAE whereby one can condense the list, classifying them according to curriculum, location, rating and entrance exam.  It then offers a tabular comparison of all the schools that tink up in the search.

Thankfully, the portal is not limited to nurseries and schools. It goes across financial verticals to compare credit cards, loans, insurance options, banking accounts and surprisingly, mobile plans too.

Wait, it gets even better. This is one platform that works on dialogue and consumer feedback. As a parent (or consumer), if you feel the need to compare any vertical, send in a request to the CEO (read doting mom) and she will gladly oblige.

For what its worth and for the relentless growth prospects it harbors, is a long-haul player – My two cents!