Despite the growing popularity of Dubai Metro, the Dubai Tram, and a complex and wide-ranging Dubai bus network, the preferred way to get around Dubai remains the traditional taxi.
|Waiting time per minute||Dh.0.50|
|Charge per kilometre||Dh1.82|
|Passing through Salik gate||Dh4|
|Daily hire, 6 hours||Dh300|
|Daily hire, 12 hours||Dh500|
|Standard flagfall||Pre-booked, Sat-Wed||Pre-booked, Thu-Fri|
|6am to 10pm||10pm to 6am||Peak||Non-peak||Peak||Non-peak|
|7am to 10am, 4pm to 8pm||4pm to 12am|
All standard taxis are sand coloured with a different colour roof depending on the taxi company they belong to. The RTA recently launched the Hala Taxi service, a fleet of black and white cars for booking only.
|Black and White||Hala Taxi (Pre-book only)||04 208 0808|
|Red||Dubai Taxi||04 208 0808|
|Pink||Lady Taxi||04 208 0808|
|Orange||Metro Taxi||04 267 3222|
|Yellow||National Taxi||600 543322|
|Green||Arabia Taxi||04 285 5111|
|Blue||Cars Taxi||04 269 2900|
Get the app
Download the RTA’s smartphone application to plan your journey and book a taxi. It’s handy to have Google Maps on your phone, too. It could help both you and the driver.
Different taxi fares
You should be aware that airport taxis apply a pick-up fare of Dh25, and ladies-only taxis apply a pick-up fare of Dh6.
Different taxi sizes
Most taxis are medium-sized saloons, like the Toyota Camry or Hyundai Sonata. They take four passengers maximum.
If you require an MPV that can take up to six passengers, you should call in advance to book.
Booking in advance
Booking a Hala Taxi is a preferred way of getting around, but they are limited in number and getting them during peak times can be difficult. Pre-booked taxis are the best option for those living in residential areas where passing taxis are usually not so common.
Best places to get taxis
If you’re waiting to flag a taxi down and are struggling, then try and head towards the nearest mall, hotel, or hospital. Metro stations are also good places to find a taxi.
Do not get in an unlicensed taxi. Often they can be difficult to refuse if you have been waiting a long time, but it is not worth the expense and the risk. It is worth noting that unlicensed Taxis are illegal.
It’s worth making sure you have plenty of low denomination notes to pay for your taxi, particularly if you are only going a short distance. Even Dh100 notes can be difficult for a driver to find change for.
Safety and rules
Wear your seatbelt! In some cases, seatbelt clips can slide down the back of the seat. If you can’t find it then do not hesitate to get out of the taxi and find another one. Your safety is paramount.
Eating, drinking, and smoking
Don’t eat or drink in the taxi, as per the taxi rules. If you want the driver to follow the rules, you should follow them too. Drinking water is acceptable. All taxis are strictly non smoking.
Get out on the right
By law you are only allowed to get out of the taxi from the right-hand side. It is not uncommon for the left-hand rear passenger door to have a child-lock on. Don’t be alarmed as this is purely for your safety.
The driver and the law
Each taxi has a unique number, which is on the rear right of the outside of the vehicle. Make a note of it so you can complain if required, or if you leave something behind in the car. Also make a mental note of the colour of your taxi.
A lot a drivers change shifts before the evening peak begins – 4pm. It means getting a taxi around this time can be harder.
Sadly, a lot of drivers don’t have as good a city knowledge as you would expect. Before your trip it’s a good idea to know what landmarks are nearby your destination – this will help the driver and your patience.
Drivers are not legally allowed to refuse a fare, but you may struggle to convince them when you want to go to JBR on a Thursday or Friday night. If you met with any resistance, take down the number and report them to the RTA.
Don’t be conned
Be aware that the driver may try to take a longer route to increase the fare. Have an idea of the way to your destination from a map, either on your phone or hard copy.
If they speed, drive dangerously, or are using their phones without a hands-free kit, tell them you are not happy. Be assertive and if they don’t comply, demand the driver stops and lets you out. Report them to the RTA.
Meter not turned on
If a driver doesn’t turn the meter on, your ride is free. If you are met with any resistance, call the RTA or police immediately.
Website Roads and Transport Authority Phone 800 90 90