Essential Information

UAE Economy
Oil and gas are significant contributors to the UAE’s healthy economy. Dubai’s strategy has been to diversify the economy and reduce the dependence on oil of which Tourism is making an important contribution to the GDP.

Weekends
The official weekend is Friday and Saturday.

Religion
The official religion is Islam. Islamic holidays and festivals are officially observed. Other religions are respected and followers are allowed to practice their beliefs.

Clothing
Lightweight clothing can be worn all year round. At the pool or on the beach, trunks and swimsuits are acceptable, but you are encouraged to respect local culture when in the city and should wear non-revealing clothing.

Alcohol
Alcohol is widely available to non-Muslims in the city’s bars, nightclubs and restaurants situated in hotels. Most independent restaurants are unlicensed.

Credit Cards
All major credit cards are widely accepted though smaller businesses may prefer cash payments. It is advisable to carry cash.

Service and Tipping
The service level in Dubai is generally very good and if you were pleased with the way you were treated, a small tip is appreciated.

Language
English is predominantly spoken however, learning a few Arabic words is appreciated:

  • Greetings: As’salam Alaikoom
  • Thank you: Shokran
  • Hello / Welcome: Marhaba / ahlan wasahlan
  • Yes / No: Na’am / La
  • Goodbye: Ma’al salaam