At first glance, Dubai looks like a vast desert expanse with the monotony only broken by huge hills. But as you get closer and look beyond the palm trees, a futuristic urban sprawl made of glass, steel, and lights unfolds like a shimmering mirage in the Arabian Desert. Add leisure shopping to this and you’ve got yourself the perfect holiday destination. Tourists from around the world flock to Dubai between the months of November and March to enjoy all that this city has to offer. The famous shopping festival also happens during this time.
Dubai is a beautiful conglomeration of age-old traditions and futuristic ideas and ambitions, making it one of the most interesting places to visit in the world today. For Indians, it is a great weekend getaway considering its proximity to the subcontinent. You can head to Bur Dubai for a taste of the city’s history or visit the more recently-developed region of Jumeirah for all your shopping and leisure activities. And if you think that Dubai is only a place for the rich and famous, think again! You can enjoy all that the place has to offer in a budget of as little as Rs.3000 a day. And of course, if you’re looking to spend more, the sky is the limit. Luxury holidays start at around Rs.6000 a day.
How to reach Dubai
Dubai is well-connected to the Indian subcontinent and rest of the world through most major airlines. In fact, Dubai is a very popular stopover destination and the Dubai International Airport is one of the fanciest and busiest airports of the world.
Nationals from 45 countries are eligible for free visas on arrival (valid for 30 days) in the UAE. These tourist visas can be extended once for a period of 30 days for a fee of Dh500.
Best Time to Visit Dubai
- Peak Season is from November to March when Dubai sees the largest number of tourists in the city. The famous Dubai Shopping Festival also occurs during this season.
- Off-season: April to October brings summers to Dubai. The tourist numbers tend to decrease during this period due to the heat and humidity.
Budget for Dubai
For Budget Travellers: INR 3000 - 4000 a day
- Accommodation in basic hotels: INR 2000-2500 in the peak season
- Food in cafes and street eateries: INR 350-900
- Public Transport by the metro and ferries: INR 50 - 130
For Mid-range Travellers: INR 5000 to 7000 a day
- Accommodation in mid-range hotels, villas and homestays: INR 5000 - 7000 in the peak season
- Food in mid-range cafes and restaurants: INR 600 - 1500
- Local transport in boats and local taxis: INR 200 - 500
For Luxury Travellers: INR 10,000 and upwards a day
- Accommodation in 4* or 5* hotels: INR 10,000 and upwards in the peak season
- Food in upscale restaurants and bars: INR 1000 and upwards
- Local transport in cabs, water taxis: INR 300 and upwards
- Activities (Skydiving, Scuba etc.): INR 3000 and upwards
Visa Information for Dubai
Nationals of 45 countries are eligible for free 30-day visas on arrival in the UAE. Tourist visas can be extended once for 30 days, for a fee of for Dh500.
Citizens of India holding a valid US visa or Green Card do not require an advance visa for tourist purpose and can get a visa on arrival, valid for 14 days, from any port of entry. It costs AED 100. The US visa/GC must be valid for 6 months beyond the date of arrival. An extension is possible for another 14 days for an additional fee.
All passports must be valid for at least six months from the date of arrival. It is generally not possible to enter with an Israeli passport, but anyone entering the UAE with an Israeli stamp in a non-Israeli passport should have no problem.
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