Car Hire in Dubai
This information is correct as of April 2015
Make the most out of your trip to Dubai by hiring a car. Dubai is a very car friendly city, with wide roads and ample parking. Whether you want to explore the city or are planning some interesting UAE road trips, with Skyscanner you can find the perfect rental vehicle for your trip.
Where to hire a car in Dubai
Choose from top global car hire brads like Thrifty, Sixt and Budget or rent a vehicle from one of Dubai’s many local rental companies. Car pick up spots are dotted around the city, whether you want to pick up your car as soon as you arrive or want to pick it up later. Lots of car hire companies are based in and around Dubai International Airport, and there’s another large cluster near Bur Juman Metro Station. Some hotels in Dubai offer a pick-up and drop-off service, where your hire car is brought to you once you’ve settled into your room.
Driving in Dubai
The work-week in Dubai lasts from Sunday to Thursday, so rush hours are a little bit different. Roads are quieter on Fridays as this is a holy day for local Muslims. Speaking of religion, be careful during the holy month of Ramadan. Drivers can become a little more reckless while rushing home to break their fast. Dubai police recommend staying off the roads in the hour before sunset.
Dubai drivers have a bad reputation. Some don’t indicate, some overtake on the inside, and others drive like they’re auditioning for The Fast and the Furious. Keep your wits about you, keep your distance, and be prepared for crazy manoeuvres from fellow road users.
Dubai’s road toll system, Salik, has been in place since July 2007. Pre-paid Salik tags are attached to the windshield, and every time the vehicle goes through a toll point AED 4 (about 75p) is deducted from the account. The Salik card is usually supplied by the car hire company, and you reimburse them when returning the car.
Parking in Dubai
On-street parking is charged at an hourly rate, which can be paid at a parking meter. Alternatively you can send an SMS to 7275 quoting your registration plate, the amount of time you’re planning to stay in the space, and the unique code on the sign. Expect to pay AED 1-2 (about 20p-40p) per hour. It’s usually free to park between 1pm-4pm, as well as on Fridays and public holidays.
Dubai’s malls and supermarkets generally offer free parking for their customers. Sometimes you need to pay to park, but you’ll be refunded when you pay for your shopping. Many hotels and restaurants also offer free valet parking (but don’t forget to tip).
*Prices subject to change
Great day trips from Dubai
It takes just over an hour to reach Yas Island in Abu Dhabi, home to the Ferrari World Theme Park. It’s a must for all racing and car enthusiasts. It’s the world’s largest indoor theme park, great for escaping the hot Emirati sun. There are lots of great rides to enjoy, such as Formula Rosso (the world’s fastest roller coaster) as well as plenty of race simulators and other fun activities.
The lush garden city of Al Ain sits on the border with Oman and is well worth a visit during your trip to Dubai. Pay a visit to the UAE’s highest mountain, Jebel Hafeet, enjoy some culture in the Al Ain Museum and Fort, or enjoy a relaxing walk in the Al Ain Oasis. The zoo is also excellent, and sure to impress kids of all ages. The city is just under 90 minutes drive from Dubai.
Hatta Heritage Village
It should take you around 80 minutes to reach the town of Hatta, home to the Heritage Village. Here you can get a glimpse into what life was like in the UAE before the cities become bywords for glitz and glamour. After a dusty day exploring the village and museum, cool off in the nearby Hatta Rock Pools.