Dubai is home to various spectacular attractions, landmarks, and is one of the leading tourism destinations across the globe. Dubai has been the top bucket list destination and was visited by more than 5 million tourists in 2020. As per a report by a UK-based company, it is the second most healthy lifestyle city in the world. From shiny skyscrapers to state-of-the-art buildings, mesmerizing beaches to fine dining and luxurious nightlife, there are multiple attractions that make it worth the visit. Here’s a handy Dubai travel guide with essential Dubai Travel tips you must keep in mind to make the most of your vacation.
Dubai Travel Guide: Things to keep in mind
Dubai is a hot destination for travel enthusiasts, but violating laws could land you in jail on your trip. There are various things that you must keep in mind. The following are some of the most critical Dubai travel tips to help you plan your trip and ensure everything goes smoothly.
Best time to visit Dubai
Dubai’s climate can be extremely hot and humid. You can avoid visiting Dubai in the summer months as the extreme weather and heat can be unbearable. The best time to visit Dubai is during the winter months, i.e., from November to March. The weather is pleasant, and it will be convenient for you to participate in the outdoor activities. However, December to mid-February is the peak season for travel in Dubai because of the New Year’s celebrations and Dubai Shopping Festival. The prices for hotels may also skyrocket during this time. Therefore, you must keep this in mind and plan your trip accordingly.
Check flight tickets six months ahead
Most international airlines offer cheap air tickets six months prior to the dates. We are not saying that you should book your tickets six months prior to the trip. However, you should start comparing to ensure that you get the best deal. We would suggest you book your tickets at least one month in advance. Similarly, if you are visiting during peak season, you must make your Dubai hotel reservation well in advance.
Documents and Currency
Obtaining a visa for Dubai is a hassle-free process. You must consider applying for a visa at least one month in advance to avoid any last-minute delays. Additionally, you must keep your visa, and other travel documents handy to avoid any panic. AED or Dirham is the currency used in UAE. You can either get them exchanged at the mall or the airport for better exchange rates. Besides this, one must consider carrying their International Debit/ Credit Cards so that they can withdraw the amount from the ATM.
Health and Safety Precautions in Dubai
Dubai is a safe country, with low crime rates and health hazards. But you should still take some general precautions. Avoid taking your original documents everywhere along with you. Keep them in the hotel’s locker room and carry photocopies or save the copies on your phone.
Arriving in Dubai
You must note that Dubai International Airport is one of the busiest airports because of the high amount of tourists across the world. The airport has three terminals and you will have to go through extreme security measures to proceed and move towards your hotel. You can purchase the NOL travel smart card from the airport as cash won’t be accepted. Another that you must keep in mind is that Dubai has an excellent metro system. Therefore, you can consider taking the metro as it is extremely convenient and cheap as well. The ticket for the metro will cost somewhere from AED 4 to AED 8.5. The bus fares are comparatively expensive than that of the metro and start from AED 5. Taxis are another convenient mode of transportation in Dubai but can be extremely expensive. You can also rent a car in Dubai for an adventurous experience.
Tip: Carry a city map and the address of your destination
Take permission before taking photographs
It is illegal to take photos of women, families, government organizations, political buildings, and strategic or military locations in Dubai. You could be charged with violating the law and invading someone’s privacy. Therefore, we would suggest you take permission from others before taking photographs.
Do follow the driving rules
Compared to other countries, Dubai’s speed limit is extremely high and can vary from 100-140 km/hr. However, this doesn’t imply that you should Overspeed and drive impatiently. You should follow the basic road regulations and avoid drinking. UAE has zero tolerance for drunk driving, and you could be in serious legal issues.
Dress modestly and show respect during Ramadan
Dubai is more liberal than other Islamic countries, but you should be careful while packing your essentials and respect the Muslim culture. If you are visiting Dubai during the month of Ramadan, you should respect their religious beliefs. Avoid eating, smoking, or drinking in front of them in public during Ramadan.
Dubai Food and Nightlife
Although not much talked about, Dubai food and nightlife are worth all the attention. A great choice of bars, restaurants, and nightclubs, there are multiple places you can visit lounge, and party. Most bars and restaurants will serve you alcohol if you are a minimum of 21 years of age, while a few have restrictions and might refuse entry to anyone under 25. Most nightclubs close at 3:00 AM. Therefore, you should plan accordingly and check for these aspects while looking for the best nightclub in Dubai. Besides this, there are multiple food festivals happening in Dubai year-long. You can visit them and try the scrumptious street food of Dubai.
Here are some most commonly used Arabic phrases that might be helpful for you:
- Marhaba – Hello
- Shukrun – Thank You
- Na’am – Yes
- La’ – No
- Min Fadlak – Please
- Afwan – Sorry, Excuse Me
Avoid Public Display of Affection as it is considered against the culture. There are many people who have been arrested for showcasing PDA. It is advised to refrain from PDA or holding hands of your significant other.
Dubai Travel Guide for Shopping Enthusiasts
If shopping is your primary agenda, here are some Dubai travel tips for you:
- Plan your trip during Dubai Shopping Festival (January) or Dubai Summer Surprises (July) for the best deals
- International shopping brands are not tax-free. You may have to pay more if you wish on buying international brands.
- If you are paying through Credit cards, you may have to incur some extra costs.
- Buy souvenirs and novelty gift items from Karama.
- Consider buying all items from the same store to avail good discounts.
- Compare prices from different stores if you plan on shopping for gold in Dubai.
- Buy electronic products from the annual Gulf Information Technology Exhibition (GITEX) at heavy discounts.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Dubai a safe place to travel?
Dubai is one of the safest destinations for travel enthusiasts. The laws are strict in Dubai, and you won’t face any issues.
How many days are needed to explore Dubai?
You can spend around one week in Dubai to explore it properly. There are multiple sights and attractions that you shouldn’t miss.
What should I shop for in Dubai?
Arabic attars, Persian Rugs & Carpets, camel milk chocolate, and Arabic pots are some of the things that travelers can shop for in Dubai.
These are some of the essential Dubai travel tips that you must keep in mind for a hassle-free and pleasant trip. From the tallest hotel buildings to scenic beaches, Dubai offers much more than you can imagine. We hope this Dubai travel guide solves your concerns and helps you plan your trip. Stay tuned for more such guides and tips.