A motorist takes parking ticket from Mawaqif machine at a parking area on Muroor street in Abu Dhabi. Image Credit: GN Archives

Abu Dhabi: All parking spaces across Abu Dhabi city will become paid from August 18 onwards, the Abu Dhabi Department of Transport announced on Tuesday.

The department has urged motorists and vehicle owners to obtain residential parking permits before the implementation date in order to avoid fines and penalties.

The move is being undertaken in order to organise parking spaces across the city and ensure the smooth flow of traffic, while also eliminating improper parking practices.

Motorists will also be able to reduce the time spent in looking for parking spaces, the statement said.


Paid parking was first introduced in the capital in 2009 amid rampant complaints of insufficient parking spaces.

Since then, parking has been made paid sector by sector, starting from the busiest areas in downtown Abu Dhabi, and with pavement markings indicating areas where the scheme has been implemented.

Turquoise-and-black or turquoise-and-white markings differentiate between the two types of parking spaces – standard and premium – charged at Dh2 and Dh3 per hour respectively.

The department also set up parking structures in various neighbourhoods to further ease the parking shortage. Similar rates apply to parking within these structures.


The pavement marking system will, however, be scrapped from August 18, and each parking sector will be separated using signage.

This means that motorists will have to pay to park in areas where paid parking had not yet been implemented, like Al Muroor and Al Bateen, for instance. In addition, residents living in these previously-unpaid areas must also obtain residential parking permits unless they want to pay daily and hourly parking fees.

A response from the department on which areas exactly will become paid from August onwards is not yet available, but the statement specified that the move to implement paid parking applies to Abu Dhabi island.

No change has been announced for parking in areas off the island, such as in Khalifa City and Shakhbout City, and the Department has also not clarified whether motorists will be able to use parking tickets from one sector when parking in another.

Residential parking permits

In order to avoid paying hourly rates to park near their areas of residence, tenants and property owners, as well as their first-degree relatives living in the same home, can apply for residential parking permits.

Those without residential permits also cannot park in the spots marked as residential between 9PM and 8AM every day.

A maximum of two permits are issued per residence, specific to the vehicle and the sector where the residence is located.

Residential parking permits for expats costs Dh800 for the first permit, and Dh1,200 for the second. Permits can also be obtained twice a year, with Dh400 being the cost of the half-yearly permit for the first car and Dh600 for the second car.

Emiratis living in villas can park free of cost near their residence, and those living in apartments are eligible for upto four free residential permits following approval obtained from the Department.

To obtain residential permits, motorists must submit the land plan, a copy of the attested tenancy contract, a copy of their Emirates ID, a copy of vehicle registration, and their latest water and electricity bill to the Department’s customer service centres.


Paid parking in Abu Dhabi

Parking is currently paid in many areas on Abu Dhabi island

Parking fees must be paid between 8AM and 12 AM every day

Standard parking: Turquoise-and-black pavement parkings, charged at Dh2 per hour

Premimum parking: Turquoise-and-white pavement markings, charged at Dh3 per hour for a maximum of four hours

Dh15 to park in standard parking for a whole day.


For the new signage-based parking system from August 18 onwards, details are yet to be announced

Residential parking

Allows expatriate motorists with permits to pay a yearly fee to park near area of residence

Available for up to two cars per expat residence: Dh800 for residential parking permit for first car, Dh1,200 for residential parking permit of second car. Fee can also be paid biannually

Attention non-residents

Non-residents cannot park in spaces marked for residents between 9PM and 8AM every day

Residential permit

To obtain a residential permit, submit the following documents to the Department of Transport: Land plan (often provided by the landlord), a copy of the attested tenancy contract, a copy of the Emirates ID, a copy of vehicle registration, the latest water and electricity bill

Where to apply  

Department of Transport customer service centres at the Department headquarters in Al Maqtaa from 7AM to 3PM, at the Abu Dhabi Police Traffic and Patrols Directorate between 7AM and 3PM, at the Abu Dhabi main bus station from 7AM to 9PM, at the Abu Dhabi City Municipality from 7AM to 3PM and at the Abu Dhabi City Municipality Mussaffah branch between 7AM and 3PM.

Motorists can also apply for residential parking permits online on dot.abudhabi.ae

Parking near villas

Emiratis living in villas eligible for free parking near their residence.

Emiratis living in apartments eligible for 4 free residential permits in their area of residence following approval from the Department of Transport