How to plan your holiday in Dubai from the UK?

If you are considering a trip to the marvellous city of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), there are a few things that you should know before you go on your journey.

When is the best time to visit Dubai?

Summers in Dubai are infamous for their blazing heat from April to September. Hence, it’s not the greatest time to visit due to the horrid heat. You do not want to get sun burned. The winter months of November to February are perfect for visiting Dubai since you can enjoy outdoor activities and sightseeing. The Dubai Shopping Festival takes place between January and February. Summer months are less costly as there are fewer tourists, resulting in cheaper hotel and flight expenses.

Passport Validity

Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the date of arrival into the UAE. To visit the UAE, if you have a residency permit, your passport must be valid for at least three months.

Visa Laws

Full British passport holders will be issued a free visit or tourist visa upon arrival in the UAE. There is no need to apply ahead of time. As you pass through Immigration, your passport will be stamped with the visa. For British passport holders, the visa is given at the airport and is valid for 30 days.

Individuals who desire to stay in the UAE beyond the expiration date of their visa must contact the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs website in Dubai. Otherwise, they will maybe be fined for overstaying.

What are the Covid-19 regulations?

Dubai is accessible to the UK visitors, and those who are wholly vaccinated, under 12, or have disabilities, they do not need to present proof of a negative Covid test before entry. Travellers who have a Covid-19 recovery certificate with a QR code dated within 30 days of departure are also exempt from taking the test.

Those who have not been completely vaccinated, they must still undergo a PCR test before arrival. The RT-PCR test certificate must be printed or digital in English or Arabic. It must include a QR code that shows the test was conducted in an authorised facility. Other language certificates must be validated, and those provided for past travels are not authorised. Some fully vaccinated travellers may be randomly chosen to do a Covid-19 PCR test upon arrival and will be required to isolate in a private hotel until the results of the COVID-19 PCR test.

Travellers from the United Kingdom to Abu Dhabi, both fully vaccinated and unvaccinated, will be required to undergo a PCR test upon arrival but will not be quarantined. Entry procedures change between Abu Dhabi and the rest of the United Arab Emirates, therefore it’s recommended to consult the UAE government website directly for information on those emirates before travelling inside the nation.

Visitors to Dubai must have relevant international health insurance and must register their information on the Covid-19 DXB Smart App before travelling.

UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETD)

UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are not acceptable for entering the UAE, although they are approved for airside transit and exit. If you want to leave the UAE and need an ETD, you need to go to UAE Immigration and get an ‘out-pass.’ If you are a UAE resident with an ETD, your visa may be cancelled, and you will need to seek a new residency visa on your new Full Validity Passport to return to the UAE.  Before submitting the ETD application, you should verify with Immigration in the Emirate where your visa was granted.

If your passport is lost or stolen, you must file a police report using the Dubai Police website application or at a local police station in another Emirates. Allow ample time because receiving the missing report might take several days, potentially delaying your vacation plans.

Important things to know before you visit the city

  • No public displays of affection (PDA): Holding hands and kissing in public is considered disrespectful and may result in arrest. Kissing and beyond, in short, anything that suggests inappropriate behaviour with the opposite sex in public is unacceptable. So, it is best to wait until you return to your hotel for such displays of affection.
  • Don’t take photographs without permission: It is offensive to photograph locals and some structures in Dubai, regardless of how beautiful you find them. Most people would consider it unpleasant to have their photographs taken without their permission, therefore it is better to ask them first. Aside from that, you are free to snap as many selfies as you like. Additionally, avoid photographing airports, police stations, ports, royal residences, and military structures.
  • Cohabitation: In Dubai, cohabitation between unmarried couples is illegal. This is also applicable to hotel rooms, so bear this in mind when making hotel reservations.
  • Don’t drink in public: It is prohibited to drink or be intoxicated in public, so if you’ve had a fantastic night at nightclubs or pubs, make sure you take a cab back to your hotel right away.
  • Don’t drink and drive: Drinking and driving are illegal in Dubai, and if the police detect even a trace of alcohol in your system, you will be arrested. Aside from not driving intoxicated, if you speed, there are cameras everywhere and a significant penalty is given, using your phone while driving can also result in a fine if detected.
  • Drug Policy: Check the UAE’s official website to understand which drugs are legal, as there is a severe zero-tolerance drug policy in force, which may apply to numerous prescribed medications.
  • What to wear: Dress appropriately while visiting public areas. On beaches and resorts, shorts and swimwear are allowed, but shoulders and knees should be covered when in public.
  • Ramadan Guidelines: Follow the Ramadan rules because, throughout the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset. If you come at this time, keep in mind that eating, drinking, and smoking are all forbidden throughout the day. Instead, dine in your hotel room or a restaurant.
  • Offensive behaviour: Swearing and rude gestures, particularly those made online, are regarded as obscene conduct, and violators may face imprisonment or deportation.
  • Technical Equipment: A licence may be needed to operate equipment like satellite phones, listening or recording devices, radio transmitters, advanced cameras, or binoculars in the UAE. Consult the UAE Embassy in London for guidance.
  • Avoid littering or you’ll be charged with a hefty fine.
  • The calling code is +971.
  • The currency of the country is United Arab Emirates Dirham.
  • Arabic is the nation’s official language, however many individuals are also fluent in English.

Best places to visit in Dubai

There are several locations to visit and enjoy in Dubai. Here are a few places:

Burj Khalifa: The first thing on your itinerary should be a visit to one of the world’s tallest structures. The Burj Khalifa, which is 828 metres (2,716.5 feet) tall, contains 160 liveable levels. The Burj Khalifa is a stunning architectural and technical feat, featuring two observation decks on the 124th and 148th floors and Atmosphere, the world’s tallest restaurant at 1,450 feet, on the 122nd level. The building is accessible from the bottom level of the Dubai shopping mall.

Dubai Mall: Are you a shopoholic? F so, you can head to this stunning mall. The Dubai Mall, located in downtown Dubai, is one of the largest and nicest shopping malls in the world, with over 1,200 stores. Some of the mall’s most popular attractions include VR Park Dubai, Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, Hysteria, Reel Cinemas, Dubai Dino, an ice skating rink, and KidZania.

Miracle Garden: Dubai Miracle Garden, located in Dubai, is the world’s largest natural flower garden, with a collection of 50 million flowers and 250 million plants. It is a massive flower garden covering 72,000 square metres, with many gorgeous floral arrangements and experiences that are a feast for the eyes.

Dubai Frame: The Dubai Frame is an iconic building in Zabeel Park that ‘frames’ stunning views of Old and New Dubai. It is the world record holder for the largest frame. You can have fun there by strolling through the floor’s glass panels and speeding up in a glass-sided elevator.

Dubai Souks: A souk is a marketplace in Old Dubai where you can buy foreign and local items such as cotton, raw silk, wool, cashmere, pillows, and other fabrics. The Gold Souk is the most well-known of the souks and is widely regarded as the greatest gold market in Arabia and one of the best places in the world to shop for exquisite jewellery, gold, silver, and gemstones.

Dubai Creek: The nation’s first important port, rich in historical significance. Previously, it functioned as a secure harbour for trade with neighbouring Arabian Gulf ports. The stream is now packed with Ferries and Abras, providing a unique way to experience the city. You may also embark on a Dhow cruise and experience great cuisine, music, and dance.

Dubai Fountain: Enjoy your evening by visiting The Dubai Fountain, the world’s highest-performing fountain, which combines water, music, and light. The Dubai Fountain is located on the 30-acre artificial Burj Lake and plays on a variety of music. Performances are held at 1:00 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. on weekdays and every 30 minutes from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends.

If you have read these guidelines and information, you are set to make a trip to the Shopper’s Paradise. Enjoy your stay.


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