We all know the importance of saving and investing, but how many people start planning to offset the cost of their child's education before they actually start school, let alone university?
The cost of educating a child can be one of the biggest expenses parents face, behind buying the family home, especially if they have more than one child.
Expatriates are unique in the world of education, with many having no choice but to send their little ones to expensive private schools because of the international curriculums they offer.
And unless you are lucky enough to have your company pay for this expense as part of your salary package, school fees can have a huge effect on your savings even if your child is only in kindergarten.
When it comes to education planning, there are a range of options for parents, including flexible saving schemes that can be taken out over a number of years.
One of these is the Child Savings Plan (Waladi), which is offered by the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) in partnership with Friends Provident International.
"It is a highly flexible, regular monthly savings plan designed to secure medium- to long-term financial objectives," says NBAD, the UAE's second-largest lender by assets.
"The daily rising cost-of-living expenses and inflation costs can amount to a significant sum for an individual to bear. It is highly recommended for children, their education and future."
The Waladi savings plan has a minimum term of five years and a maximum term of 25 years. It is payable automatically by a standing order from an NBAD account, while the minimum monthly contribution is US$150 (Dh550). The bank says there is no upper limit to the monthly contributions.
"The plan also offers insurance options, which can play a vital role in protecting your savings plan objectives by guarding against unforeseen events," the bank says.
"It invests in a range of funds managed by NBAD, each designed with its own fund strategy based on varying levels of capital security and growth."
For more information, go to the bank's website at www.nbad.com.