Dubai: Paying your electricity bill or renewing your driving licence? You might notice an additional fee added to your bill, apart from the service charge or bill amount. The additional fees, whether they are under the category of ‘Knowledge fee’ or a ‘housing fee’ are some of the fees levied by the UAE authorities.
Government fees in the UAE
According to the UAE government’s official website – u.ae – local authorities apply fees on some services and transactions for the purpose of development and maintenance. This includes the following:
- Road tolls
- Knowledge fee
- Innovation fee
- Housing fees
1. Roads Tolls
Darb Toll Gate System
In Abu Dhabi, motorists need to pay road tolls during peak traffic hours when crossing the following key bridges:
- Sheikh Zayed Bridge
- Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Bridge
- Al Maqtaa Bridge
- Mussafah Bridge
The toll is charged at Dh4 per crossing, with a daily cap of Dh16 per vehicle. So, even if you cross more than four toll gates in a day, you will only have to pay a maximum of Dh16. Also, there are certain vehicles, like Abu Dhabi’s public buses and taxis or school buses that are exempt from the toll.
For all other vehicles that are not exempt, the payment is made through an online system, which links the vehicle’s number plate with the owner’s registered mobile number. To know more about the toll gate system, how to register your vehicle and how to top-up your Darb toll account, read our detailed guide here.
Salik Toll Gate
In Dubai, motorists need to pay road tolls under the Salik toll system, with toll gates installed at the following locations:
- Al Barsha
- Al Garhoud
- Al Garhoud
- Al Maktoum
- Al Mamzar South
- Al Safa
- Airport Tunnel
- Jebel Ali
To use the roads that have a toll gate, motorists are required to place a Salik tag on their vehicle’s windshield. The charge of crossing a toll gate is Dh4. Every time a vehicle passes from under a toll gate the Salik account linked with the tag is charged the toll amount. To know more about how to set up your Salik account and activate your Salik tag, read our detailed guide here.
2. Knowledge fee
The Knowledge fee was established as per Law No. (1) of 2018, issued by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. The law was issued by Sheikh Mohammed in his capacity as the Ruler of Dubai.
As per the law, a Dh10 fee is levied on all transactions for government services in Dubai, including federal government services whose revenues are allocated to the Public Treasury of the Government of Dubai.
The Law aims to involve the community in supporting educational and cultural projects in Dubai, as well as create simple and clear procedures for the collection of the Knowledge Dirham Fee.
According to the Law, the fees will not be refunded when transactions are cancelled. They will not be charged for transactions less than Dh50, and for fees set by the Department of Finance. Healthcare Services provided by government entities are exempt from the Knowledge Dirham and Innovation Dirham.
3. Innovation fee
In 2018, Sheikh Mohammed issued Law No. (2) of 2018 on the Innovation Dirham Fee in his capacity as the Ruler of Dubai.
The fee aims to support innovation-related projects and involve the public in supporting innovation. As per the Law, Dubai government entities will charge an Innovation Dirham Fee of Dh10 for all transactions.
The revenues generated from the fee will be allocated to the Dubai Future Foundation (DFF).
4. Housing fees
Dubai Municipality imposes a housing fee, which is equivalent to five per cent of the rent as per the rent contract. The Dubai Housing fee is a charge you need to pay when you own or rent property in Dubai. You will find the fee being charged when you look at the charges broken down in your electricity and water bill. To know more about how the fee is charged on a monthly basis, read our detailed guide here.