Tuesday 30 December 2014

Public transport in Dubai

Public transport in Dubai

This is my 3rd trip to Dubai.

In January 2014 I walked EVERYWHERE, I covered miles on foot along the beach, through the streets and around the malls and back again.

In November 2014 with hubby I mastered the train and now December 2014 after relocating here from South Africa I’ve mastered the taxis and the buses.

I’m rather enjoying the freedom in Dubai, the fact there is public transport that is affordable, the fact after 4 years in South Africa I can walk out the hotel to the local shops and cafes without fear for my safety on day one, has made it all so much easier to relocate.

On my first day in Dubai and on my own I stepped outside the hotel and into a taxi, I very confidently gave him the address of our new house, somewhere I’d only seen on google earth and within 5 minutes it became apparent the taxi driver had no idea where I wanted to go. Assuming it was my accent and I’d pronounced the place name wrong, I wrote it down and showed it to him.

From my memory of google earth I directed him to the house, after he finally listened to me. I was pleasantly surprised when he didn’t charge me on arrival and he apologised. But I’m now avoiding taxis, it wasn’t over expensive, but the bus and train is cheaper.

Armed with a map that is not to scale, having been dropped at the airport to wave goodbye to the youngest, I caught the train to ADCB where the map indicated I could pick up the number 88 bus. It cost me AED5, after a 15 minute wait I hopped on the bus which cost a further AED7.50 and tah dah I made it, back to the house. Yesterday at the same stop after the number 8 whizzed past, I caught the 88 again which terminates right outside our hotel, I then caught the train to Dubai Marina and then the metro to Jumeriah Towers 2, where I sat Big Chef's cafe awaiting the arrival of Real Madrid.

The buses and trains are brilliant, I purschased a NOL silver card for AED25, which gives you AED19 of travel time and cheaper journeys, you swipe in and you swipe out when you reach your destination, no worrying about having the correct bus fare on you, although you do need a miniumum of AED7.50 for any journey to start loaded on your card , and no worries about where you need to ask to go. I recognised the area near our house very quickly, both journeys I had a seat but I got on at unpopular stops for this time of the morning, by the time I reached my destination it was a bit of push and shove to exit. 

Be prepared for a bit of a walk from the train to your end destination, for example it is 1km from the train into Dubai mall, but it's under covered, air conditioned and there are travelators to use.

The bus stops have air conditioned shelters with an electronic board of when the next bus is due and it's end destination. All of the public transport is very clean, runs on time and is easy to navigate. The routes, the rules and the fines are very clearly displayed.

I will be avoiding the weekends, Fridays and Saturdays, especially the popular destinations such as the malls and the creek as everyone seems to be going there.

1 comment:

  1. This is all very fascinating reading about your travels in Dubai.