10 Things to Keep in Mind When Planning a Trip to Dubai

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Planning an international trip to the Middle East?

There is no better option than Dubai. Desert safaris, stunning beaches, awe-inspiring architecture, exotic food, and vibrant nightlife are some of the things that this city has in store.

things to keep in mind when planning a trip to dubai

Now, there are a few essential things to keep in mind when visiting Dubai. Keep reading to learn more.

10 Important Things to Remember When Visiting Dubai

Here are some of the top things to keep in mind when visiting Dubai:

1. When to Plan Your Trip

The first thing you should keep in mind is when to plan your Dubai trip. Being located in the desert, summer can be unbearable in this city. Thus, you must schedule your vacation during the winter months, i.e., November to March.

The weather remains very comfortable during this part of the year, allowing you to stay outdoors the entire day. If you wish to avoid the crowds, planning your visit between mid-November and early December or in the first half of March will be ideal.

Meanwhile, the peak season lasts from December end to mid-February, with the New Year and the Dubai Shopping Festival, when there are long queues, thick crowds and exorbitant hotel prices.

Also read about: How to Spend Winter Vacations with Desert Safari Dubai

2. What Should You Pack

Packing light and loose cotton clothes is ideal for Dubai’s weather. However, women travellers are suggested to avoid wearing revealing or tight-fitting clothes. Proper beachwear/swimwear is a must, as Dubai has beaches, and most hotels have swimming pools.

Additionally, do not forget sunglasses, hats, and sunscreen.

3. Currency and Documents

AED (commonly known as Dirhams) is the prevalent currency in Dubai. It is advisable that you carry some Dirhams to pay for your transportation and food at the airport. You can convert the majority of your INR to AED at the Dubai airport. (It sometimes offers better exchange rates).

Apart from this, consider carrying international debit/credit cards to withdraw AED from ATMs in Dubai.

Following is a list of documents that you need to carry on your Dubai trip:

  • Passport with a minimum of 6 months of validity.
  • Valid travel insurance policy.
  • Confirmed flight and hotel bookings.
  • International driving licence (if you plan on renting a car).
  • Full COVID-19 vaccination report.
  • Doctor’s prescription for any medication you might be carrying.

4. Availing Travel Insurance

In Dubai, travel insurance is not mandatory only for those individuals who do not need a visa to enter the UAE. Thus, unless you have such clearance, applying for travel insurance is a must to get a UAE Visa.

Now, although Dubai is one of the safest cities in UAE, there can be hassles like loss of passport, loss of luggage, trip cancellations or extensions, flight delays, medical emergencies, etc. Having travel insurance allows you to get financial coverage for such expenses hassle-free.

5. Applying For Your Visa

To apply for a Dubai tourist visa, which remains valid for 60 days from its issuing date, Visit the official website of the UAE Government or a UAE-based Tourist Visa service provider’s portal. Fill in the application form, upload the necessary documents, and pay the fees on the portal

The documents required to apply for a Dubai tourist visa for Indians are as follow:

  • Copy of the passport’s first and last page.
  • Recent passport-sized photographs.
  • Duly filled Dubai Visa application form.
  • Valid travel insurance policy.
  • Residency Visa proof (in case your nationality is not the same as your country of permanent residence).
  • Confirmed flight and hotel bookings.
  • Sponsorship by any hotel, tour agency, or airline in Dubai.
  • Income proof of a minimum of USD 8,000 (IT documents are also acceptable).

Additionally, if you have a US Visa or Green Card, you can apply for a visa on arrival with a validity of 14 days, which can be extended for another 14 days.

6. Landing in Dubai and Reaching Your Hotel

At the Dubai International Airport, there are three terminals for International Arrivals. After baggage reclaim, immigration procedures and an inbound security check, you need to select a mode of transport for reaching your hotel.

The available options are bus, metro, or taxi, and you need to buy an NOL travel smart card as cash payments are not accepted. Taxis are the fastest way to reach your destination but are the most expensive.

Also read about: Everything You Need to Know About Holiday Homes in Dubai

7. Social Étiquettes

Here are some social etiquettes that you must follow during your Dubai trip:

  • Wearing sleeveless clothes and shorts is only allowed at major tourist hubs, dune-bashing areas, beaches, and near the pool area.
  • Keep shoulders and knees covered while visiting any public place.
  • Give and receive all items, like money, food, etc., with your right hand.
  • Take off your shoes before entering mosques or the homes of locals.
  • Clicking photos of locals without permission is a sign of disrespect.
  • Women travellers must avoid shaking hands with the local men unless they are offered.
  • Holding hands and hugging in public is against the local culture.
  • Eating, drinking, littering, swearing, arguing, dancing, and playing loud music in public places is illegal.

8. Weekdays and Weekends

In Dubai, Friday and Saturday are the weekend days. The usual workweek in this city ranges from Sunday to Thursday. Thus, do not be surprised to find bars and restaurants to be crowded on a Friday morning.

Moreover, Friday brunches are pretty popular in this city. Also, since Dubai is such a popular city, you should consider pre-booking tickets to famous tourist spots in order to avoid large queues.

9. Alcohol Consumption and Nightlife Rules

You can always get alcohol at hotels, pubs, and restaurants in Dubai. However, the minimum age to purchase alcohol is 21 years, and anyone under 25 can be refused entry.

All nightclubs in Dubai close at 3:00 AM. Thus, partying till you see the sunlight is not happening here. In case you wish to drink and dine with amazing views of the Dubai Marina, dinner cruises are an excellent choice.

10. Learn Some Common Arabic Phrases

Knowing some basic Arabic phrases can help you communicate better with the locals. They are:

  • Marhaba – Hello
  • Na’am – Yes
  • La’ – No
  • Shukrun – Thank You
  • Afwan – Sorry, Excuse Me
  • Min Fadlak – Please

Additionally, there are some crucial pointers to add in the things to keep in mind when visiting Dubai list. If you are a female traveller under 25, refrain from going out in public without an elder. Avoid making holiday plans in Dubai during Ramadan, as tourists are also expected to maintain Ramadan rules in public areas.

Furthermore, keep your passport handy at all times. The authorities can ask for your identification documents anytime during your visit.

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