STOCK Salik tollgate Dubai
You can also use the ‘RTA Smart Drive’ app to avoid toll roads while driving. Picture used for illustrative purposes. Image Credit: Bloomberg

Dubai: When was the last time you were about take a turn towards a road that has a Salik toll gate and wondered if there is a toll-free route that you could take instead? Do you find yourself wondering if there might be days when Salik gates may not deduct the toll when you cross?

According to Salik, the toll road operator in Dubai, the Salik gates do not have any toll-free days – whether it is the weekend or a public holidays. However, there are a few situations where you might be able to pass a gate without being charged the toll. Here is all you need to know.


When is Salik free?

Although Salik is not free on weekends or public holidays, you can pass through the Al Maktoum Bridge located on Dubai Creek during certain parts of the day, when the alternative route – the Floating Bridge, is closed to motorists.

Free timings for Al Maktoum Bridge toll gate:

• On weekdays, the Al Maktoum bridge toll gate is free from 10 pm to 6 am.
• During the weekend, the bridge is toll-free, from Saturday 10pm till Monday 6am.

Mamzar toll gate

The Mamzar toll gate in Al Ittihad Road has two gates – Al Mamzar North and Al Mamzar South. If you drive through both the North and South Mamzar toll gates in the same direction within an hour, you will be charged only once.

Salik toll gates in Dubai:
Currently, there are eight toll gates:
1. Al Safa (Sheikh Zayed Road)
2. Al Barsha (Sheikh Zayed Road)
3. Al Garhoud Bridge (Sheikh Rashid Road)
4. Al Maktoum Bridge (Umm Hurair Road)
5. Al Mamzar North (Al Ittihad Road)
6. Al Mamzar South (Al Ittihad Road)
7. Airport Tunnel (Beirut Street)
8. Jebel Ali (Sheikh Zayed Road)

Can I avoid the Salik toll gates?

‘RTA Smart Drive’ developed by Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) is a free GPS (Global Positioning System) navigation app, which has a special feature that allows motorists to ‘avoid toll roads’ while planning their route. Here is how you can use the service:

1. Download the ‘RTA Smart Drive’ app from the Google Play Store or Apple App Store.
2. Open the app, and select the fourth option from the menu bar at the bottom of the mobile screen, which is an icon for a road.
3. Next, select the ‘Go to Search’ option.
4. Tap the ‘Navigate to’ button.
5. You will then have to tap on the settings icon on the right side of your mobile screen and select the option ‘Toll Roads’ under ‘Avoid on Route’. You even have the option to avoid highways on your route.
6. Tap on ‘OK’ and the ‘RTA Smart Drive’ will set your route.

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