How to get from Dubai Airport to the city?

This article is about how to get from Dubai Airport to the city: distance, travel time, stops, and cost

Getting from Dubai Airport to the city

You can get from Dubai Airport to the city center by underground, bus, or taxi. You can also rent a car without a driver. The duration of the trip from the airport by bus will be approximately 1 hour 20 minutes depending on the distance to your hotel, with the ticket price starting at $1. The trip by underground will be faster – its duration is 50 minutes including waiting time, while the ticket price is from $1. Prices for taxis start from $42, however, a car can take you even to the remotest hotel in just 46 minutes. The distance between Dubai Airport and Dubai city center is just 5 kilometers. But the city is situated on the Persian Gulf coast, that's why many hotels are located not less than 30-40 kilometers away from the airport.

Buses to Dubai city center run even at night, and the metro red line runs along all top hotels. So public transport is a good option for all travelers who are not afraid of getting lost and are ready for some small inconvenience. Those who are traveling with large luggage or small children and hurry to settle in a hotel, we recommend booking a taxi or a transfer. Please note that using the underground, you'll have to walk a part of your route. We also do not recommend families with children to use Dubai Airport transportation which has long waiting time. The hot climate and the burning sun of the Emirates may have a negative impact on small travelers' health, especially right after the flight.


Where to relax in Dubai? What bar to go to, what sights to see and where to eat

If you want not only to get to Dubai but also have fun there, make sure to read our detailed digests in the new Travel.Blender project. For example, you can learn what Dubai sights are worth visiting.

For those who prefer to explore the country through its gastronomic wonders, we have prepared an extensive guide "Cuisine of Dubai and Restaurants you must experience".

Dubai – the heart of the Emirates

Dubai is not only the capital of the UAE region of the same name but also the owner of the most hi-tech and modern airport in the country and the whole Middle East. Up to 50 million tourists and businessmen come here every year. Although it is a business center of the East, there are lots of things tourists can see in this fabulous city, as well. Tourists from thousands of hotels and its suburbs can visit the highest skyscraper in the world – the Burj Khalifa, enjoy the musical fountain in the Dubai Mall (the height of its water stream can reach up to 150 meters), a large aquarium on the artificial beach – the Palm Jumeirah, the Burj al-Arab – the famous hotel made in the shape of the ship sail, and many other sights.

Dubai Airport bus

Dubai Airport bus
Cost

from $1

Waiting time

20 min

Travel time

60+ min

Clients

Solo travelers

Buses from Dubai Airport to hotels follow several routes at once, and they are also available at nighttime. Select the bus number according to the district you are traveling to. If it is in the city center, you will pay no more than $1, but if your hotel is located in some remote district, the price can increase several times. Shuttle buses run every 7 minutes at daytime and every 20 minutes at nighttime. All buses are new, air-conditioned, and equipped with soft seats. But note that traveling by Dubai Airport shuttle bus you risk getting into a traffic jam.

City buses from Dubai Airport:

№ 401, 402, 11, 44, 15, 33, 2, 4.

Timetable:

24/7

Route:

There is meaningless to tell about all routes because there are dozens of them in Dubai, so we chose the most useful for travelers № 401: Airport — DNATA Airline Centre — Al Mak-um Road — Deira Taxi Station and Al Sabkha Bus Station.
№ 402: Airport — Deira City Centre — Al Karama — Golden Sands — Al Mankhool and Al Ghubaiba Bus Station. The ticket price is 3 AED ($1).
Night routes: Airport — Al Rashidiya bus station — Gubaiba bus station — Al Qusais bus station — Jabel Ali Free Zone bus station — Gold Souq bus station — Satwa bus station (pass Al Karama area, Airport Terminal 2, Dubai Marina and Greens)

Travel time:

60+ min

Waiting time:

7 min – at daytime
20 min – at nighttime

Comfort level:

medium: air conditioning, soft seats

Cost:

from $1

Clients:

tourists who travel light and know the route; travelers without small children

How to find the bus stop at Dubai Airport:

Bus stations are situated right in front of Terminals 1, 2, and 3.

Dubai Airport metro

Underground in Dubai Airport
Cost

from $1

Waiting time

10 min

Travel time

40+ min

Clients

Couples

There are green and red lines on Dubai Airport metro. To get to city center, use the red line. The ticket fare depends on the number of zones passed through. On average, you'll have to go through 3-4 zones to get to the city center, and this trip will cost you 7.5 dirham ($2) per person. Metro trains are frequent, and the duration of the trip will be approximately 40 minutes. Metro is not available at night.

Timetable:

Sunday – Wednesday and Saturday: from 5:00 to 00:00

Thursday: from 5:00 to 01:00

Friday from 10:00 to 01:00

Route:

To see the full route of the red and green lines, follow the link.

Travel time:

40+ min

Waiting time:

5-7 min

Comfort level:

high: comfortable carriages, fast trip, air conditioning, stops near sights and hotels

Cost:

from $2

Clients:

tourists who travel light and without small children; those who know the route

How to find the metro station:

Red line stations are located near Terminal 1 and 3. Please follow special signs to get to the platform. Airport Free Zone station of the green line is situated near Terminal 3. The metro map.

Dubai Airport transfers & taxi

Dubai Airport taxi service
Cost

from $42

Waiting time

5 min

Travel time

46 min

Clients

Families

The Kiwitaxi transfer from Dubai Airport to the city means

  • you can take as many suitcases with you as you want
  • you’ll be taken to the doorstep of your hotel
  • you can pre-pay your booking and forget about transport passes

On the Dubai metro, the allowed luggage is limited — two pieces per person. By contrast, booking the transfer from Dubai Airport , you can choose a suitable car for all your suitcases. Moreover, make sure that your hotel in Dubai is a walking distance from a metro station or a bus stop. If not, it’s better to rent a transfer from Dubai Airport that will get you to your hotel. RTA Intercity Buses from Dubai Airport don’t accept cash. You need to buy a Nol card and use it onboard. As for the private transfer, you can pay for your ride right away on the website.

Car rental in Dubai

Car rental in Dubai
Price

from $25

Rental Period

from 1 day

Required driving experience

from 2 years

To rent a car without a driver to get from Dubai Airport to the city center, you need an IDL and a passport. Cash is not accepted, all transactions are processed with embossed credit cards. Most of the cars have automatic gearbox.
Insurance is included in the price of car rental per day. A navigator will cost you $8-10. You can rent a car at Dubai Airport.
Don’t use the services of companies that accept national driving license. If you don’t have an IDL most of the insurance companies will deny coverage.

Route:

only within the UAE

Minimum age:

21 years

Comfort level:

high
You don’t stand at stops in the hot sun, don’t depend on other travelers

How to rent a car

Reserve a car online or hire it at Dubai Airport.

How to get from the airport to Dubai. Transport:

Getting from Dubai Airport to city

Dubai is a wonderful city, so to start your travel across this magnificent place with pleasant emotions, you should choose that means of Dubai Airport transport to the city which will get you to the destination fast and in comfort. Have a nice trip!

How to get around Dubai: bus, tram, metro? Where to buy a travel card?

Those who already know how to get to their hotel should learn more about Dubai City Transport: What types of buses and trains there are, where to buy a metro ticket and how to refill it. Plus, useful information about how to rent a car with or without a driver.

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