With more than 14 million annual visitors, Dubai is one of the most visited cities on the planet. Here are the top five things to do, before you fly to Dubai.
Dubai is a city of world records. From the world’s busiest airport to the tallest building in the world, the city is the proud owner of several accolades. In fact, it often features in the travel bucket-list of a large number of tourists.
However, with several laws and rules, which are widely different from what’s practised at home, navigating Dubai can be a bit tricky for the first-timers.
Here are the top things you have to do before you fly to Dubai:
- Book your Tickets in Advance to enjoy Huge Discounts
Dubai is a popular tourist destination and well-connected from all the major airports in India. On the flip side, air tickets are likely to be unavailable or expensive especially during events like the famous Dubai Shopping festival. One way to avoid this is by booking your flights well in advance. This way you can score a great deal at a fraction of the regular price.
Another trick is to fly from secondary airports. For instance, if you find flights from Mumbai to Dubai on the expensive side, then drive to a nearby city like Pune and fly out of there.
- When to Visit
Remember Dubai is a desert city, and the summer temperatures are extremely hot. While all indoor spaces are air-conditioned, the hot desert sun can put a dampener on outdoor activities. The best time to visit Dubai is during the cooler months from November to April.
Apart from a pleasant climate, this is also the season when the city comes alive with a wide range of events like the famous Dubai Camel Racing, Shopping Festival, and much more.
- Where to Stay
Being a major tourist hub, you have a wide choice of accommodation. From seven-star luxury properties to backpackers’ rooms, Dubai hotels come in all prices and ranges. Dubai can be roughly divided into four zones:
- Downtown Area – Right near the Burj Khalifa and home to the Dubai Mall and several outdoor souks. Stay here if you’re a shopaholic.
- Jumeirah Beach Area – Home to the Burj Al Arab and Jumeirah beach, this is the ideal location for those looking to stay near to the beach.
- Dubai Marina – This region is home to several famous eateries and restaurants along the Marina Walk. Great for foodies.
- Palm Jumeirah – The iconic palm-shaped man-made island. Ideal for those looking for sweeping views of the ocean.
- What to Pack
Dubai is a part of the UAE and follows Islamic rules. This means you have to pack modest dresses for your Dubai vacation. In public spaces, like the airport, malls, cafes and public transport, men and women must dress modestly. This means covered shoulders, dresses that reach at least your knees for the ladies, and no shorts for the men. However, in hotels, pools, and lounges, you can wear your swimsuits.
- Get your Visa Sorted
Once you have booked your flight tickets and accommodation, the next step is to apply for a tourist visa. All Indian passport holders are required to have a valid permit before they board their flight.
There are several types of visas available to tourists like the 30-day / 90-day single entry tourist visa, 30-day / 90-day multiple entry tourist visas. Alternatively, you can apply for the 96-hour transit visa to squeeze in a short visit to the city, while flying elsewhere.
Applying for a Dubai visa is easy, and several travel agencies offer this facility. Get the required documents, submit the application form, pay the visa fee, and you’re all set for your Dubai vacation.
Now, that you’ve got the basics of your trip planned, all that’s left is to plan your day-to-day itinerary. Check out the popular travel sites to find a list of preferred activities and have a fantastic middle-eastern vacation like never before.