Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a spectacular city in the Middle East, with towering skyscrapers, modern architecture, unabashed oil wealth, crazy hotel rooms, extensive shopping centers, ... But is it safe to visit Dubai?
In general Dubai is safe to visit. Crime is rare due to the fact that Dubai is a city with a lot of government supervision through strict rules. Violent crime only rarely affects tourists.
Minor crime is more of a concern, especially pickpocketing, scams, and sexual harassment, (which you can find in any city) although it almost never involves weapons. You do not often encounter this petty crime in the new part of Dubai, but rather in the old part of Dubai.
The regions where the huge skyscrapers are, however, are well controlled by the government, in these regions we felt safer than say Brussels, Amsterdam or Paris. Incidentally, it is immaculate everywhere, you can literally eat from it.
With most websites you often come across strict rules that you think is extremely risky to travel to Dubai. This is not at all! Yet there are a number of rules that you must respect when visiting Dubai. We have not experienced any problems here, everyone was super friendly and extremely helpful!
Ironically, however, it is the extremely strict rules and ruthless law enforcement of Dubai that poses the greatest threat to Western visitors.
Things that are illegal in Dubai include: public affection displays (especially between unmarried or gay partners), drunken behavior, indecent dressing, swearing, making rude gestures, photographing people without their permission, criticizing the UAE government , fundraising for charity, asking for escorts in Dubai, ...
For more explanation we gladly refer you to laws and rules in Dubai on our website.
There are, just like in every metropolis, a few regions that you better avoid visiting. For example, it is not wise to go to Sonapur on the outskirts of Dubai.
Here are camps where a large number of workers from East Asian countries reside, as a tourist you are not really welcomed here.
The Deira and Bur Dubai districts are also the less safe regions of Dubai, pickpockets and prostitution are things that you can come across here in small sizes.
All regions that make up the new Dubai are extremely safe! Did you know that Dubai scores in the top 10 in terms of safety?
As mentioned in our intro, violent crime is not something to be afraid of in Dubai. However, driving is a different story.
The number of traffic accidents in Dubai is much higher than in the West. When you take a taxi in Dubai you immediately notice why this is, they literally drive 2 meters away from each other and this on the motorway at a speed of more than 100 km / h. It is best to mention that you are not a fan of fast driving when boarding a taxi.
On the other hand, public transport such as tram, metro, bus, etc. is extremely safe and reliable.
When you cross a pedestrian somewhere at a busy intersection, make sure you pay attention, some drivers don't take it too far with pedestrian crossings and other crossings.
There are not many known cases of scams in Dubai outside the "ATM scam" and pickpockets.
An additional warning to keep in mind when you visit Dubai is the ATM Scam, criminals link a skimming device to a public cash machine so they can steal your money and data.
That is why it is important to always pin at ATMs in banks, hotels or large shopping centers and not for example. in a suburb of Dubai in a prularia shop.
There is no real danger of natural violence in Dubai. What you have to keep in mind is the extreme heat and the sandstorms that can occur there.
Between May and September it is not the ideal time to visit Dubai, it can easily become more than 40 degrees in the shade during the day. The best thing to do is to stay out of the sun and make sure you drink enough water to prevent heat stroke or dehydration.
Natural disasters in Dubai are limited by a possible sandstorm or a short but powerful series of showers. For more information about sandstorms and the climate of Dubai you can visit the weather and climate page on our website.
Finally, a security risk that every major city has to deal with is terrorism. When asked if a terrorist attack could happen in Dubai, it answered yes, but in which city not nowadays. For example, in Paris, Brussels, London, Madrid, ... you may have a better chance that this will happen.
Nobody can predict this unfortunately enough. However, it is a fact that it is not easy to smuggle something into Dubai to actually commit that attack, where, for example, there is much less control in Europe.