Keep Important Factors in Mind While Visiting Dubai
Dubai is a place to visit if you would want to spend your holiday in the Middle East. The city offers luxury five-star hotels, epic skyscrapers, exquisite restaurants, and humongous malls. It further offers gorgeous beaches that make it a perfect destination for travellers.
It is also known for lavish shopping, popular nightlife, and awe-inspiring architecture. However, before you travel to this city, you should know several things.
The spectacular city is already westernized, but there are strict rules and laws. One question that tourists ask relates to what to wear in public areas. When going to public places, dress modestly. That will prove that you respect the local habits.
If you are going to stay in tourist hotels and hotspots, you can wear anything you want. Here are the factors to consider when travelling to this place.
1. Visa Requirements
The UAE provides free visas upon arrival. The Visa will last for 30 days or even 90 days, depending on your nationality. Australians, Americans, and Canadians are among the people eligible for free visas. However, to get a free visa, your passport must have six months’ validity from your arrival date.
If you are from a country that is not eligible for the free visa on arrival, contact your embassy. Further, some nationalities can extend the 30/90 days visas, but keep in mind that it can be expensive.
2. Immigration and Customs
UAE immigration and customs officers are among the nicest people you will meet. They will treat you with respect and ask you several questions. They will try to give you a good first impression, but you should know what to do when in this country.
Some items that are not allowed in the country include narcotics and pork products. You should not bring any pornographic materials, weapons, and firearms. Visit the Dubai customs and immigration website to see the prohibited items.
3. When to Visit Dubai
You can travel to Dubai in summer – between May and September – because the hotels are cheap. Tourists are fewer during the hot months. However, if you cannot stand the blistering sun and humidity, you should try another time. The temperatures can go beyond 40 Celsius and the humidity 90%.
You are unlikely to spend over 20 minutes on the beach due to the high temperatures. That means you should choose the hot months if your budget is tight.
If you are not travelling on a tight budget, winter months – between October and April – are the best to visit. The temperatures are below 20 Celsius, and the humidity is low. You should be ready for many tourists and high hotel rental prices. The prices can be as low as $110 in summer but as high as $350 in winter.
4. Your Safety
Dubai is in the Middle East, but that does not mean that it is a dangerous place. Actually, it is among the safest cities in the world. You can walk around of the day with no issues. It is a safe place for solo female travellers.
Women can walk around the city at night, thanks to the strict laws against crime. If you have diamond rings or Chanel handbags, you can bust them out with no worries. No one will steal them. Even more, you can leave your belongings unattended while shopping or enjoy a cup of coffee.
5. Getting Around the City
Dubai offers many travel means for residences and travellers. You can board a taxi, a bus or rent a car. Most of the taxis in the city accept credit cards, but you have to clarify before you get in. Furthermore, every taxi is metered, meaning that you will never get ripped off by taxi drivers.
You can also use ridesharing apps like Uber and Careem. They are reliable, and the pricing is close to that of taxis. Most people prefer taxis in place of ridesharing because taxis are everywhere.
The city has reliable metro system transportation. However, it does not offer end-to-end transportation. Also, the public transport runs until 10 pm on weekdays and midnight on weekends. You will need a Nol card to use the metro.
6. Where to Stay
When choosing a place to stay in Dubai, do adequate research. The city offers many bustling and fun areas that the selection might look overwhelming. Dubai Marina is among the best areas to stay. It is quieter than the downtown areas.
You can choose the Grosvenor House, which is a five-star hotel. From the place, you will enjoy beautiful skyscrapers’ views and delicious meals.
Jumeirah Beach Residence is the other popular residential area in Dubai. It is worth considering if you want to access the clean beaches. You can also stay in Downtown Dubai if you want to enjoy Burj Khalifa views. Palm Jumeirah offers many unique features such as Palm Jumeirah, and it is among the best places to stay in.
When it comes to shopping, Dubai offers many malls. If you are a shopping enthusiast, try the Dubai Mall and Mall of the Emirates. You will also find malls in other cities with stores like Zara, Gucci, and Chanel. Wear comfortable shoes because you are likely to walk for longer distances.
Prices in Dubai are higher than those you expect in other places because of the high importation fees. However, you can try the summer sales to benefit from the massive discounts.
8. Dining Options
Dubai offers many American restaurants. So, you can enjoy your home cooking, you can try some of your favourite foods.
Visit Chilis, Five Guy’s, The Cheesecake Factory, Wingstop, or IHOP restaurant. Keep in mind that restaurants are expensive. Therefore, if you are travelling on a budget, try the local restaurants.
9. Weekends Begin on Friday
Friday is a sacred day for the Muslims. Therefore, weekends in the UAE start on Friday. The workweek starts on Sunday and ends on Thursday. Friday is equivalent to Saturday in the USA.
So, if you must hit the clubs, choose Thursday and Friday for that. You will hear phrases like Sunday blues, which is equivalent to Monday blues.