Islam is a state religion of UAE. However it is the most liberal of all in the Middle East. Citizens of 180 countries peacefully co-exist following their own religion. There is healthy respect for each other amongst the immigrant residents and citizens which enables multi-cultural societies to live in harmony in a metropolitan setting. However to honor Emirati religious sentiments, there are some basic codes of conduct and dressing which have to be honored. Reads through our travel tips
We kindly ask all visitors to respect our religion and place of prayer by following these simple requests: Visitors must be dressed appropriately on arrival; if not, entry will be denied.
Modest, conservative, loose fitting clothing; long sleeves, long skirts and trousers.
No transparent (see-through) clothing.
No shorts for men.
No shorts and skirts must be ankle length.
No tight clothing, no swimwear and no beachwear.
Shoes will be removed before entering the mosque, so we recommend slip off shoes.
Headscarf for ladies is essential (these can be provided when you arrive).
Intimate behaviour; i.e. holding hands or kissing is not acceptable in a Muslim place of worship.
For safety and respect to worshippers, visitors should stay within the areas of the mosque that are permitted and not roam freely around. Smoking and food are not allowed in the mosque area.
Visitors are requested not to touch the Holy Quran (Holy Book) and other architectural elements inside the main prayer hall.
ALL women will be asked to wear a traditional robe (abaya) and headscarf (shayla) before entering the mosque. Guests may wear their own, however, must be closed (not open abayas) and non-transparent.
Children are to be supervised. The area around the mosque is still under construction and personal safety must be observed at all time
Alcohol consumption is permitted in Dubai and can be purchased legally at the Duty Free outlets at any of the three Airport terminals. Each Non-Muslim visitor is allowed to buy four bottles. Alcohol cannot be purchased from any liquor stores unless you are a resident with a valid alcohol license. However, alcohol is readily sold in most hotels, bars, nightclubs and restaurants affiliated with hotels. Alcohol is not permitted to be consumed on the streets and there is a zero tolerance on drinking and driving. There are also some public holidays or periods of mourning where alcohol will not be served in public places. If this is important to you please check before booking your holiday if your dates are affected by these restrictions. It is recommended to use taxi services if you are planning to travel after drinking.
Note that drunken behaviour is unacceptable in public spaces. Making lewd remarks, passing derogatory comments, using foul language is punishable.
Consuming and possessing drugs in UAE is serious crime. The law has zero tolerance towards drug offences. The Emirate of Dubai does have regulations regarding controlled drugs, so those visitors travelling with prescription medicine may want to verify whether these regulations impact theirs. Medicines, such as Tylenol 3 do have restrictions (as it contains codeine) so it is always important to check beforehand. If you are travelling with such prescription medicine, it is advisable to only carry the necessary amount needed for your travel (not to exceed 3 months as a maximum), and a letter from your physician. Some narcotics will require prior Ministry approval.
The following website provides information to assist you in such matters:
Lewdity and Sex
Major public displays of affection like groping and kissing are to be avoided as they can cause offend local sentiments. Having sex in public places is punishable. Homosexuality is not permitted in any part of the UAE. Couples Travelling as Dubai are governed by Sharia law; it is highly recommended that unwed couples travelling together to the Emirate arrange for separate accommodations.
The following items are some of the forbidden imports to Dubai:-
• Firearms / dangerous weapons
• Religious propaganda
• Unstrung pearls except for personal use
• Raw seafood (only when visiting Dubai and/or Sharjah) or fruit and vegetables from cholera-infected areas.
Ensure you are fully covered for medical treatment through your travel insurance. Although pharmacies readily provide medicines quite accessibly, (there is even Boots Chemist here now), treatment, hospitalization and evacuation can add up to a large amount. Hospitals are generally very well equipped however and there are specialists in all areas of medicine with many state of the art treatments available.
Please check with your local embassies for visa requirements. Whilst many nationalities can enter on a tourist visa for up to 60 days (correct at time of publication), some nationalities are not allowed entry without a valid visa on arrival.
The local currency is the United Arab Emirates Dirham (AED). There are money exchange outlets at all Airports and hundreds of them all across the Emirates. U.A.E has over 50 local and international banks offering cash withdrawal facilities. ATMs are available at all Malls and most Hotels. Please do not attempt money changing on the streets as this is not a recommended form of transaction due to the possibility of fraudulent notes being offered.
Visit www.coinmill.com to calculate your currency against local currency AED. The AED is locked to the USD. 1 USD is 3.67 AED
If you arrive in U.A.E with a valid International Driving License, you are allowed to Drive in U.A.E while on a visit visa. However this does not hold good once you naturalise your status to a ‘Resident’. All residents are required to apply for a Dubai driving license. Driving under the influence of alcohol is a serious offence. Penalties can range from hefty fines, to imprisonment and deportation. If you meet with an accident, remain with your car in the spot where the accident took place and call emergency number 999 for police intervention and ambulance services. You can speak in English and control room agents will be of any assistance that you require.
Some Emergency Phone numbers in Dubai
• Police Emergencies and Ambulance: 999
• Airport Enquiries: 206 6666
• Airport Lost and Found: 04-5057538 or 04-5057584
• Fire: 997
• Road Emergency Service AAA: 800 4430