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Dubai travel guides

Transportation in Dubai

How to move around the city

In general, Dubai has good roads and a well-developed public transport system. There are buses, the tram, the world famous Dubai Metro and even boats to move around. It is important, that all public transport is air-conditioned. However, one of the most popular modes of transport are taxis and private cars. Transport prices are relatively low and depend on the duration and distance of the journey. Here you can discover the most important information about the transport system in Dubai. You will also find out how to get around cheaply and quickly.

So, what is the best mode of transportation for visiting Dubai?

Dubai has all the common types of public transport. You can navigate by bus, taxi, subway, boat, and even take a helicopter. Here you will find a description of them and can decide which one is most convenient for you.
It is worth noting that there are places in Dubai that are difficult to reach by public transport or it takes a lot of time. Therefore, sometimes the only possible mode of transport is a car. Another advantage of getting around by auto is the fact that petrol in Dubai are relatively inexpensive.

transportation in dubai
Highways of Dubai


Dubai Metro is another very ambitious project. It is relatively new, its construction officially started in 2006. In general, the cost of the project was 28 billion dirhams/US$7.8 billion. In 2009, the first line was open to the public.

Now there are 2 lines in the Dubai subway system - red and green. According to the project, on the red line, it is also planned to build 7 additional stations by Dubai Expo in 2020. In addition, two more lines are under construction right now. In total, it is planned to build four lines with 99 five-car trains on it.

The length of each train is 75 meters, with 40 seats in each carriage. The manufacturer of the train is the Japanese company Kinki Sharyo. In total, they already built 79 five-car trains. By the way, for the moment, the Redline is the biggest driverless metro line in the world!

Most of the line is situated above ground, but there is also a small part which is underground. This is interesting, that trains operate in a fully automatic mode without any drivers. However, it is also possible to switch to manual mode using the special mechanism hidden in the head carriage.

metro in dubai
Dubai Metro

The temperature inside of the trains is maintained at 20°C all year round. In general, all the transport in Dubai is very well adapted to the hot climate of the country. Also, the passages are equipped with escalators and all transitions with travelators, which makes use of trains even more comfortable for passengers.

In general, 5 carriages of the train can carry up to 643 people at a maximum speed of 110 km / h. However, usually the train goes not go fast, its average speed is from 32 km / h to 42 km / h.

The train is divided into three different sections: gold (first or VIP) class, the part for women and children and “ordinary” class. Section of the "golden" class for passengers who bought a golden ticket. In this part of the train, there are usually not a lot of people and free sites available. In this part of the train, people are just at the head of the train and can observe beautiful landscapes during their journey. However, the price of the ticket here is 2 times more expensive than the usual one.

Some parts of the train are exclusively for women (those who for whatever reason prefer to travel separately) and children. This area has space for strollers and bags. The third part consists of ordinary places (which take 80% of the train). These are also quite comfortable and modern cars, although there are slightly more passengers in them than in the first class.

Each stop is announced by speakerphone, but also displayed on the screens in both Arabic and English.

Elevated railway of Dubai Metro
Elevated railway of Dubai Metro

How much does it cost the metro in Dubai?

The cost of each journey depends on the distance. Instead of plastic tickets, the smart cards are used. You have to buy this pass, put some money on it and this is your ticket. You can make it either at the payment machines or through the ticket office. The ticket is checked during the passage through the turnstiles both at the entrance to the subway and at the exit, so keep it with you till the end of the trip.

Prices for Dubai Metro

There are 4 types of payment: red ticket (good for those who doesn’t plan to ride a lot), blue and silver (give a right to travel in the carriage of the usual class,) and gold (for the VIP class carriage) one. The difference of VIP-class car is mainly by seats that are more comfortable and wider than in the economy class.

All the lines in Dubai are divided into zones. The cost of the ticket depends on how many zones the passenger has crossed.

The maximum cost of one journey in an ordinary car can be 7.5 dirhams per ticket. If you use the red pass, the trip will cost 8.5 dirhams, and when you buy a gold one - 15 dirhams.

If you plan to make only one journey, it is better to take the red pass. For several trips, the silver pass is a good option.

It is also very convenient that near each metro you can take a bus circulating in the nearby area. Thus, you can always reach the place you need. You don’t need to pay this trip, if you have just left the subway and you pay with the same ticket.

Prices for tickets in the Dubai Metro according to the zone of travel
Type of the ticket Red Silver Gold
Price of the card 2 AED 25 AED 25 AED
Price of T2 trip 4 AED 3 AED 6 AED
Price of T2 trip 6 AED 5 AED 10 AED
Price of T3 trip 8,5 AED 7,5 AED 15 AED

What is the cost of Dubai Metro for children?

The price of transport tickets in Dubai is the same for adults and children. For the child you need to buy his own pass. If a child is younger than 5 years old or is less than 90 cm tall, then the entrance to the subway is free for him.

What are the fines in the Dubai Metro?

For travel in the female (and children's) car - a fine of 100 dirhams (AED) for men;
For travel in the "golden" car - 100 dirhams for those who do not have a gold card;
For food, drinks and chewing gum in the subway - 100 dirhams;
For smoking in the subway - 200 dirhams;
Fake call "machinist" - 2000 dirhams.

Dubai Metro opening hours

Dubai subway opening hours depend on the station. Some of them start working at 5 am. On the weekdays, the subway closes at midnight and on weekends at 1 am.

The most famous and luxurious attractions, such as Burj Khalifa and Dubai Marina can be reached just by the Red Line, but you need to consider that it takes more than an hour to go from one end to another.

Thus, the schedule is:

Opening hours of the Dubai Metro
Day of the week Opening hours
Saturday - Wednesday From 05:00 to 00:00
Thursday From 05:00 to 01:00
Friday From 10:00 to 01:00

Dubai Metro map

Dubai Metro has for the moment only 2 lines - red and green. Just look at the map to easily figure out how to get to the place you need. The green line covers the eastern part of Dubai and runs from Etisalat to Dubai Creek Bay. This line stretches from Dubai International Airport almost to the border with Abu Dhabi. Check out the Dubai Metro Interactive map to discover all the stations.

The main Dubai Metro stations

One of the most popular Stations in Dubai is Union, which has a transfer from one line to another. Also, from the Union, you can go to Sharjah, Ajman and other regions of the country. The #E303 goes to Sharjah, the number E400 to Ajman, the number E700 to Fujairah.

The Dubai Mall Station is popular because the most luxurious shopping centre of Dubai is located there, but also famous Dubai attractions such as the Burj Khalifa and Dubai Fountains. Dubai Marina Station is located in the same area, now it is renamed to “Damac Properties”. In fact, if you settle in Deira or elsewhere in the western part of Dubai, the best way to go to Marina is by subway.

Dubai Marina area consists of skyscrapers and luxury hotels, there is a beautiful promenade and a great beach there. You can also take a speed boat from Dubai Marina and make a journey along the coastline of Dubai.

Dubai Metro station
Dubai Metro station


Buses are also one of the popular modes of transport in Dubai. There are a total of 136 vehicles running daily. This network in Dubai is called "DubaiBus". All the buses are new, comfortable and air-conditioned. The stops in Dubai are air-conditioned too, what is important especially in the summer. Vehicles are also well adapted for passengers with wheelchairs and baby carriages.

To take the bus to Dubai, you need to make a sign to the driver or press a special button at the stop. Please note, that three first lines of seats are for women and children.

RTA (The emirate’s Roads and Transport Authority) has launched a trip planner Wojhati.

Thanks to this service, you can easily and quickly plan your movement. There is also a map, which shows how buses are connected with the Tram, Metro and Boats.

If you do not have access to the Internet, you can still get all the necessary information right at the bus stops. Also, at all stops, there is printed information about the routes, as well as the schedule. In addition, on the electronic screens, installed at each shelter display it in real time.

Bus in Dubai
Bus in Dubai

How much does the Dubai bus cost?

Tickets for your trip you can buy online, at some stops, RTA service centres, but you cannot buy them from the driver. For the payment the NOL pass is used as well. The price of the trip depends on the distance travelled. For example, one journey with a single red pass costs approximately 0,60 - 1,56 € = 2.5 - 6.5 dirhams. With a reusable silver one the price may vary from Reusable silver pass, trip costs 0,56 - 1,39 USD = 2.3 - 5.8. dirhams; and the NOL itself 4,76 € = 20 dirhams.

Can I pay cash in Dubai bus?

The only way to buy tickets is to get a NOL card. Any payment on to the driver is not accepted. Thus, you cannot pay by cash in Dubai bus. However, the WiFi is free onboard.

Payment for the transportation in Dubai
Payment for the transportation un Dubai

What time do buses stop running in Dubai?

Each line circulate according to an exact schedule and has a different timetable. In general, they are open until 23 hours (the exception is Friday) On this day, buses run until 1 in the morning. In any case, it is better to use Dubai journey planner to be sure about the time and direction of your trip. To be sure, that there are no major changes you can also ask about the exact timetable on the reception desk of your hotel.

How to get from Dubai to Abu Dhabi by bus?

The bus is the cheapest way to get from Dubai to Abu Dhabi without having a car. The journey takes about one and a half or two hours and costs you 25 dirhams. Take #E100 from the Al Ghubaiba station in Bur Dubai to get directly to the Abu Dhabi. There are departures from Al Ghubaiba every 15 minutes. During the whole trip to Abu Dhabi you may enjoy a free WiFi.

There is also #E101 departing from the Ibn Battuta. It will be the best option for those who live in Dubai Marina, JBT or JBR. From this station, there are departs every half hour. If you need to get from the Dubai Airport to Abu Dhabi, you can use a free shuttle service, provided by Emirates Airlines.

How to get to the airport in Dubai?

Dubai International Airport is just 5 kilometres away from the center. You can go there in three possible ways: by metro, bus or car.

The bus is the longest way to go to the airport. However, the duration of the trip depends on the location of your hotel. It will take you about 1 hour 20 minutes to get there from the centre (Al Ghubaiba).

This is interesting that Dubai has one of the best school buses in the world. They are equipped with a modern security system. there are also installed cameras and geolocation sensors. Additionally, the system to monitor the conduct of driving.

Also, the RTA organizes the Best School Transport Award for companies that provide the city with school vehicles. In general, Dubai has 329 private school operators. In addition, 109 schools provide transportation for children on their own vehicles.


Dubai is very car-friendly. The most convenient way to travel, if you do not have your own car, is a taxi. It has a large fleet of vehicles, so you probably won’t have to wait long for your car. It is fast, comfortable and relatively inexpensive. All the cars are government-licensed and managed by the Dubai Taxi Corporation. All cars look the same: cream coloured with a coloured roof. The roof depends on the company which provides the service.

By the way, or female travellers who feel uncomfortable in the company of a male driver, there is a special service Ladies Taxis. In these cars, all drivers are only women. You can easily recognize these cars by their pink roofs.

Taxi in Dubai
Taxi in Dubai

How to book Dubai Taxi?

To get a car, you can simply stop it on the street, make a phone call or ask your hotel staff to take care of it.

The phone number to order a car is 04 208 08 08. All the cars of this company are cream-coloured with a red rooftop. However, in the streets, you can meet cars with a green, red, orange and yellow rooftops, owned by other companies.

There is also a mobile application called RTA Smart Taxi. It allows to quickly search and book the nearest car.


If you took the car on the street, the minimum price of the journey is 3 dirhams between 6 am and 10 pm and 6 dirhams between 10 pm and 6 am. If you order a car though dispatch centre, the minimum fare is 6 dirhams at the day time and 7 dirhams at night.

If you start your trip from the airport, the minimum price is 20 dirhams . Meter-fare distance is 1,6 dirhams / km at any time. Also, you will be charged 1 dirhams every 625 metres.

inside of the dubai taxi
Inside of the Dubai taxi

Do taxis in Dubai take credit cards?

Yes, drivers in Dubai accept credit cards. If you have Visa, Master, JCB, China Union Pay or Diners, you can easily pay with it in Dubai Taxi. Then, you can pay for your trip by using the Apple Pay service. RTA has announced, that Smart Mobile Payment is now accepted by drivers.

Moreover, you can pay with your NOL pass. Simply make sure that you have put enough money on it.


Yes, Uber is currently working in Dubai. The cost of the trip depends on the type of car you choose.

Dubai Uber rates
Car Base Fare Per km Per minute
Select 6,70 AED 2,25 AED 0,25 AED
One 10,17 AED 1,93 AED 0,81 AED
Black 10,17 AED 1,91 AED 0,81 AED
Uber XL 13,22 AED 2,71 AED 0,81 AED

Thus, that the prices for uber in Dubai are relatively inexpensive. We advise you to use the Uber service when you need to move for long distances. Taxi Dubai is more cost effective for short trips.


Tramway in Dubai called the DubaiTram, looks quite modern and futuristic, like everything in Dubai. There is only one branch in Dubai and it is rather short. It contains only 11 stops, but it is stretched in the all Dubai Marina area. The line runs along Al Sufouh Road from Dubai Marina to the Palm Jumeirah and Al Sufouh.

You can take it from the Jumeirah Lakes Towers and Damac Properties metro stations, which are connected to the tram line with crossings. These are called Interchange stations, it means that at these stations you can change one type of transport for another. Two more stations are expected to connect with the team in the future.

What time does the tram close in Dubai?

On weekdays, Dubai trams run from 6:00 am to 1:00 am. Friday in the United Arab Emirates is a day off, so the schedule is different: from 9:00 am to 1:00 am.

What is the price of Dubai tram?

Regardless of the duration of the journey, the price of a tram is 3 dirhams with a silver card. This is due to the fact that all teams are in the same transport zone. With a red pass, which is used by most tourists, the ticket costs 4 dirhams.

By the way, in buses, payment was made through terminals installed at the entrance doors. But there are no such devices inside of the railway carriage, so you cannot pay for your trip there.

Payment should be made at the stop using orange mini-terminals. At each stop, there are inspectors who carefully watch all the passengers who “check in” a ticket. We remind you that the penalty for non-payment of travel in Dubai is 200 dirhams.


Like in any big city in the world, in Dubai you can rent a car. Depending on your situation and preferences, you can take a car for a short time (from one hour to a few hours) or for a long time.

It's quite easy to navigate in UAE as UAE especially Dubai and Abu Dhabi. You need to follow the rules of the road and drive on the right-hand side there. Of course, seat belts are mandatory. All roads are very high quality with clear information signs. If you have doubts about how to get to a particular point, use Google Navigator.

car rental in dubai
Car rental in Dubai

How to rent a car in Dubai?

Dubai has a large number of services where you can rent a car. You can book it both in advance and upon your arrival. Of course, the earlier you do this, the more choices of cars you will have.

Budget rental is a good solution for those who are looking for a car rental in Dubai. You just need to specify the place where you want to get the car and rental dates. Then, you can choose the car you like from the list. You also have popular rent car services such as:

It is best to book a car so that you can pick it up from the airport. Then you won't have to take a taxi.

Airport Car rentals allows you to quickly find the car you need and reserve it for the dates you need. When you take your car, this is important to make sure that lights, seats, windows and mirrors are all in good working order. Also read the contract carefully. Make sure you have accident insurance (both for the car and for you).

Always make sure you have collision and damage insurance and personal accident insurance in place before renting any vehicle.


Dubai is a maritime city. Today, boats are used mainly for tourists as entertainment. Most often it is speedboat tours, sea journey on yachts or dinner on a Dhow Cruise. However, there is still an area where boats are used as a means of transportation. The Creek is a port area where wooden traditional boats ferry people.

Where to take an abra boat in Dubai?

Deira is the area of Dubai and its former commercial centre. There is a small port where you can take a Dhow Cruise & Dinner or simply try get an abra boat.

Abra is a traditional Arabic wooden boat used for commercial purposes in the Persian Gulf.

Each boat can accommodate up to 20 passengers and there are a total of 150 such boats. The cost of such a journey is 1 dirham you must pay directly to the driver. The whole journey takes about five minutes. By the way, if you got a Half Day Sightseeing Tour, you will definitely take a ride on this boat and this journey is included in your tour. By such a water taxi you can cross the Dubai Creek from Deira Old Souk to Bur Dubai (west of the Old Souk). There is also another route which goes from Al Sabkha to Dubai Old Souk. map?

abra boat in dubai
Abra boat in Dubai


Obviously, a helicopter is not the most popular form of transport in Dubai. However, it is still actively used by both tourists and locals to get around. Many companies offer scenic tours, aerial filming and VIP transfers.

Dubai Helicopter Sightseeing Tour

Dubai Helicopter flight is a trip allows you to fly above Dubai and enjoy this panorama from a bird's eye view. You will have a 360-degree view of the Burj Khalifa, Palm Jumeirah, Burj Al Arab and other Dubai’s popular sites. The helicopter flies over the astonishing Dubai beaches, The Palm Jumeirah, The Dubai Marina and other attractions of the city.

helicopter flight in dubai
Helicopter flight in Dubai

How long is a helicopter tour to Dubai?

The duration of the tour depends on your preferences. It can last 17 minutes, 22 minutes, 40 minutes or more. The shortest flight lasts 12 minutes and allows you to see:

  • Burj Al Arab
  • The Palm Jumeirah
  • The Jumeirah Coastline
  • Burj Khalifa
  • Godolphin
  • Business Bay
  • Dubai Canal

How much is a helicopter tour to Dubai?

The 11-minutes flight costs 642 dirhams (153 €). 22-minutes tour is for 1044 dirhams (204 €).

  • Check more Dubai helicopter tour prices

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