Except for few months during summer, Dubai has very comfortable weather to visit for holiday, vacation or family visit. Most of the tourists travel to Dubai during the winter months due to the pleasant and comfortable weather. Dubai has a hot desert climate and is extremely hot during the summer. The maximum temperature during summer is around 45c with extreme hot, windy and humid weather in the hottest month August. Winters are warm with maximum temperature of 24c and the night temperature going down up to 8c overnight in January, the coldest month.
The culture of Dubai is influenced by the religion of Islam and traditional Arabic Values. Dubai’s culture has also been influenced by Persian culture, which is reflected in its art, architecture, music, attire, cuisine and daily lifestyle. Muslims are called to pray five times a day in mosques and Friday is considered a holy day by the Muslims and is a government off day. Dubai boasts one of the most beautiful and largest mosques, The Jumeirah Mosque, which is an example of Modern Islamic Architecture and is the only mosque in Dubai which is open for public every day except on Friday. Dubai also has large Christian, Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist and other religious communities residing in the city. Non-Muslim groups can own their houses of worships including Churches, Temples and Gurdwaras or can practice their religion freely by taking a land grand and permission to build a compound.
Arabic Food is very popular and is available easily everywhere in the city from small restaurants to the big restaurants and hotels. Due to the increasing number of immigrants from different countries Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Pakistani and Continental cuisines are available widely in Dubai. The sale of pork is legal nowadays in the designated areas of supermarkets and airports only for non-Muslims. The sale of alcoholic beverages is regulated in hotels, bars and restaurants within the hotels. Dubai is also famous for the nightlife and bars. Most of the clubs and bars are found inside the hotels due to the liquor laws. A Liquor permit which is issued by the municipality and which applies only for non-Muslims is required to purchase the alcoholic drinks for the people who are on employment visa in Dubai.
Tap water in Dubai is said to be completely safe to drink and so travellers need not worry about constantly purchasing bottled water.
Dubai is one of the shopping capitals of the world with its multitude of gleaming supermalls selling designer labels by the dozen, fast cars, gold bars and any other luxury item you could imagine. Yet, for the average shopper, of whose league these purchases are well and truly out, there is still a plethora of products than can and should be bought during your trip.
Although we might not all be able to buy a gold bullion straight from a vending machine, jewellery made from gold is cheaper and purer in Dubai than in many other countries around the world so if you are partial to a bit of golden adornment, here is the place to buy it. Dates are also a great souvenir to take home as they will survive the flight and still taste great upon landing – Middle Eastern dates are also known for their taste.
Many stores in Dubai will sell things at a fixed price but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t plenty of opportunities to haggle in this desert playground. Places like the Gold Souk and anywhere that sells traditional items from the Middle East are great places to try your hand at bargaining and you will often be able to leave knowing you’ve got a great deal. Remember not to be aggressive with your haggling so that both you and the seller can walk away feeling satisfied.
Dubai is not known for being cheap. One of the biggest expenses that most travellers will have, aside from accommodation, is activities. Heading to the top of the Burj Khalia, sliding down an indoor ski slope or getting wet at one of the water parks can cost anything from USD $25-100 so prepare for this in your budget. Street food is an inexpensive way to dine and can cost less than USD $10 in some cases. Dining in mid-range restaurants can cost between USD $30-50 for a three course meal and upwards of USD $100 at a high-end eatery. Due to religious restrictions, alcohol is always expensive with a beer costing around USD $6. Taxis can be expensive as the city is large and distances can be quite far
Currency in Dubai
The official currency in Dubai is the UAE Dirham (AED).
Money can be changed throughout the entire region at banks, airports and most hotels. Most malls will also have a currency exchange office, which will usually offer better rates than hotels and airports so it is best to do as many of your exchanges as possible here. Travellers can carry a maximum of AED 100,000 into the country without declaring it. It is useful to have case for things like taxis but generally most places will accept all major credit cards.
If you intent to travel to Dubai, you should know that traveller’s cheques are not recommended as they can be hard to exchange and usually incur heavy fees.
Time zone is Dubai
Dubai is 4 hours ahead of GMT and does not observe Daylight Savings.