Moving around Dubai isn’t the easiest at the best of times but once you get used to the different methods of transport – you’ll be a pro at finding your way around this amazing city.
Starting with the easiest form of transport – the taxi. Dubai taxi’s can literally take you door to door and although they’re not the cheapest method of transport, they are reasonable if you need to be somewhere quick.
You can generally pick a taxi up on the street (look out for the green lights/vacant sign on top of the taxi), however if you’re living in a residential area where taxi’s are rare, you can call the Dubai Taxi booking line or email them to book. You will receive a text confirmation and then the driver will call you as soon as he is outside. The good thing about this is that the nearest taxi driver will generally accept so you shouldn’t be kept waiting for long – unless it’s peak time then it is hard to say how long you might be waiting.
You may notice the pink roof taxis – driven by ladies. Generally you only see them at the airport but you may get some who can be booked or flagged down towards the airport side. These cost slightly more and when booking it’s best to confirm the starting meter price.
A street pick up taxi meter will start at 5 dirhams
Pre-booked taxi meters will start at 8 dirhams during off peak times and 12 dirhams for booked taxi’s during peak times.
Peak times –
Saturday to Wednesday the peak hours are set from 7am to 10am, and 4pm to 8pm.
Thursdays and Fridays the evening peak hours are set from 4pm to 12 midnight.
Buses in Dubai are better now than they were years ago but still have a long way to go. They are often overcrowded during peak times but are air conditioned. Men it’s important to pay attention to segregated seating as usually the first set of seats are allocated to women and children. Dubai buses cover a lot of area so are great if you want to travel for cheap but please note they are extremely slow so you need to give yourself enough travel time if you have an important meeting or interview. Click here for all bus routes in Dubai.
You need a nol card to travel on the bus. Nol cards are similar to London’s Oyster card. You need to put money on the card and use that to pay when stepping up on to the bus. There are 5 types of nol cards – click here to find out which is best for you.
The metro in Dubai is one of the more popular methods of travel. It runs along two lines – red and green; red line runs from Rashidiya to UAE exchange Jebel Ali (including Burj Khalifa/Dubai Mall and Mall of the Emirates), the green line runs from Dubai Creek towards the Airport. Although some stations are few and far between there are always taxi’s and buses at stations to take you exactly where you need to be.
You need a nol card to travel on the metro but all stations include top up machines/counters where you can check your balance, top up or get help with your card.
There are carriages which are allocated to women and children, as well as a gold cabin which is like the VIP section – you will need a gold nol card to access this. It’s not expensive to pay for Gold either so worth the amount for comfortable seating if you’re travelling a longer distance.
Prices start from 3 dirhams for a single station journey – Click here to find out up to date costs of nol card fares.
Dubai tram runs within the Marina/JBR area – connecting to the Metro and the Palm Monorail (see below for more info). Trams move extremely slow but are great for getting places around the marina/JBR area as those areas can get a lot of traffic especially during peak times. Click here for a tram route map.
The cost for using the tram is the same as the metro. Click here for a breakdown of costs.
The monorail runs only along the trunk of the Palm Jumeirah towards Atlantis hotel. Currently there are other stations but they are not open yet. Many people using the monorail to travel towards the Atlantis for photo opportunities.
You cannot use a nol card for this journey and you can only buy a single or return ticket at the main station. Single journey is 15 dirhams and a return is 25 dirhams.
We shall keep this page updated so please do let us know if there’s anything you want to know more about or have any questions on. Share your Dubai transport experiences with us, we’d love to hear from you!