Are you planning a trip to the UAE? If so, then you’re in the right place! This blog post will provide the top 10 tips for travelling AE. From what to pack and where to go to how to stay safe while visiting, these tips will help you make the most out of your time in this beautiful country. So, let’s get started with the top 10 tips for travelling to the UAE!
1) Do Your Research
When travelling to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), it is essential to do your research to have a safe and enjoyable trip. Here are a few key things to keep in mind:
Visa requirements: Depending on your nationality, you may need to apply for a visa before your trip. Check the specific visa requirements for your country of origin and plan accordingly.
Cultural customs: The UAE has a rich cultural heritage, and it is essential to respect local customs while there. This includes dressing modestly, avoiding public displays of affection, and being mindful of religious practices.
Safety: The UAE is generally considered a safe destination for travellers, but it is still essential to be aware of your surroundings and take standard safety precautions.
Weather: The UAE has a hot desert climate, with temperatures often reaching over 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) in the summer months. Be sure to pack appropriate clothing and stay hydrated to avoid heat stroke.
“but guess what, as you read this article, we have the best winter in the world so you won’t experience the 40 degrees yet.”
2) Get a Good Guidebook
When planning a trip to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), getting a good guidebook is one of the most important things to consider. A guidebook can provide valuable information, from transportation and accommodation to cultural customs and must-see attractions.
When searching for a guidebook, it is essential to find one specific to the UAE, and this will ensure that the information is accurate and up-to-date. It is also helpful to look for a guidebook that includes detailed maps and information on local transportation options, as navigating the UAE can be challenging for those unfamiliar with the area.
Another essential aspect is the guidebook’s coverage of cultural customs and etiquette. The UAE is a Muslim country, and it is essential to respect local customs and traditions. A guidebook that includes information on appropriate dress and tips on how to behave in certain situations can be constructive.
3) Check the Weather in Advance
When planning a trip to the United Arab Emirates, it is essential to check the weather in advance to pack appropriately and plan activities accordingly. The UAE is in a desert climate, which means that temperatures can be scorching during the day and drop significantly at night.
During the summer months (June to September), temperatures can reach up to 50 degrees Celsius (122 degrees Fahrenheit), and humidity can be high. It is important to pack lightweight, breathable clothing and to stay hydrated throughout the day. Outdoor activities during these months should be planned for early morning or late evening, as the heat can be unbearable during the middle of the day.
“Did I mention above that it’s raining and 15 degrees outside as my fingers tip down on the keys of my Mac?”
4) Pack Light
When planning a trip to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), it is essential to pack Light in advance to make the most of your time and avoid any unnecessary stress. The UAE is a relatively modern and affluent country, and many things you may need during your trip can be easily found in the local shops and markets. However, there are a few things you should consider packing in advance to make your trip more comfortable and enjoyable.
One of the essential things to pack Light in advance for travelling to the UAE is clothing. The weather in the UAE is generally hot and humid, so it is important to pack lightweight, breathable clothing that will keep you cool and comfortable. Avoid heavy and dark colours, and opt for light colours and natural fabrics such as cotton and linen. Also, pack some lightweight layers for the evening, as temperatures can drop significantly once the sun goes down.
5) Dress Appropriately
When travelling to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), it is essential to dress appropriately out of respect for the local culture and customs. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Cover up: Dress modestly by covering your shoulders and knees. Avoid wearing revealing or tight-fitting clothing.
Avoid beachwear: Do not wear swimsuits or beachwear outside the beach or swimming pool area.
Respect religious dress codes: Avoid wearing clothing with religious symbols, particularly in mosques. Also, it is essential to note that Muslim women are expected to cover their heads and hair in the mosque.
Be mindful of footwear: Remove shoes before entering a mosque or someone’s home.
Dress respectfully for business meetings: Wear formal attire when conducting business or attending meetings.
Be sensitive to local customs: Avoid wearing clothing that is offensive or could be interpreted as disrespectful to the local culture
6) Respect Local Customs
When travelling to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), it is essential to respect the local customs and culture. The UAE is a Muslim country, and Islam heavily influences the culture, so it is essential to be mindful of the dress code, language, and behaviour.
- Women are expected to dress modestly, covering their shoulders and legs.
- It is best to avoid shorts and tank tops, opting instead for long pants or skirts and long-sleeved shirts.
- Arabic is the official language of the UAE, but English is widely spoken.
- It is always appreciated when tourists try to learn a few basic Arabic phrases.
- Public displays of affection are not accepted in the UAE.
- It is also essential to be mindful of religious practices, such as not eating or drinking in public during Ramadan.
7) Learn Some Basic Arabic
When travelling to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), learning some basic Arabic phrases is always helpful to make your trip more enjoyable and efficient. Arabic is the official language of the UAE, and while many people speak English, it is still essential to know some common phrases to help you navigate the country.
Here are some basic Arabic phrases that you should know when travelling to the UAE:
- Hello (Assalamu Alaykum): This is the most common greeting in the UAE and means “Peace be upon you.” It is used when meeting someone for the first time or as a general greeting.
- Thank you (Shukran): This is a crucial phrase to know when travelling to the UAE, as it is used to express gratitude for any service or help you receive.
- How are you? (Kayf Halik): This is another standard greeting in the UAE, and it is used to ask someone how they are doing.
- Yes (Na’am) and No (La’): These are simple words that you will often use when travelling to the UAE, as they are used to answer questions or give responses.
- Excuse me (Afsahli) and Sorry (Ana Asif): These are polite phrases that you can use to get someone’s attention or apologize for something.
- Where is the restroom? (Ayn Al-Hamam?): This phrase is beneficial when you need to find a restroom in a public place.
- Can you help me? (Hal Tastahidli Minni?): This phrase is useful when you need assistance with something and want to ask for help.
8) Shoulder Season is Best
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a popular destination for travellers, with its luxurious hotels, iconic landmarks, and endless shopping and dining options. However, the peak tourist season in the UAE can be incredibly crowded and expensive, making it difficult to enjoy all the country fully has to offer. The best time to visit the UAE is during the shoulder season, which typically falls between September and May.
During the shoulder season, the weather is still warm and sunny but not as hot as during the peak summer months. This makes it the perfect time for outdoor activities such as desert safaris, dune bashing, and camel rides. The temperatures are also more comfortable for sightseeing and exploring the country’s many cultural and historical sites, such as the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and the Abu Dhabi Heritage Village.
9) Avoid Scams
When planning a trip to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), you must be aware of potential scams that can ruin your vacation. Here are some tips to help you avoid scams while travelling to the UAE.
Be cautious of unsolicited offers: Whether a cheap deal on a tour or a discounted hotel room, be wary of unsolicited offers that seem too good to be true. Always research the company or individual offering the deal before handing over any money.
Be careful with taxi drivers: Some in the UAE may try to overcharge tourists or take them on a longer route to increase the fare. To avoid this, use a reputable taxi company, such as Careem or Uber, or negotiate the fare before getting into the taxi.
“A dear friend fell victim to this one. My friend unknowingly gave her emirates ID number and her card number to a caller who pretended to be calling from the police, and then the next minute, the account was showing zero balance. Be aware, police in UAE would not call you asking for your card number or something like that.”
10) Have Fun!
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a popular destination for its luxurious resorts, shopping, and vibrant nightlife. Visitors can experience the modern and cosmopolitan city of Dubai or the more traditional culture of Abu Dhabi.
Some popular activities in the UAE include:
- Visiting the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, and taking in the stunning views from the observation deck
- Shopping at the Dubai Mall, one of the largest malls in the world (The name change for Dubai Mall has just been announced this week)
- Going on a desert safari, including sandboarding and camel rides
- Visiting the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi
- Exploring the Abu Dhabi Islands like Saadiyat, Delma and Sir Baniyas Island
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