A Guide To Safe Driving in Dubai


Though Dubai is the second largest of the 7 emirates in the UAE, driving inside the city is not easy at all. The city is buzzing with activity always. With traffic at its peak most of the times and strict traffic rules and regulations in place, Dubai can be a nightmare for you to drive around, especially if you are new to the city. However, once you get used to these rules and develop a good understanding of the roads, you will be thrilled to drive around the beautiful roads and landmarks here.

Given below are some important tips that you have to keep in mind always, while you are driving in Dubai. These act as guidelines for you so that you reach your destination safely without causing any problem to yourself or others.


This is one of the serious problems that you should be aware of while driving in Dubai. The laws may tell you that it is illegal to overtake vehicles on your lanes while driving. However, in real life, the situation is something else! When you are driving, you should always be watchful and have a check on your side mirrors to know if somebody is overtaking you.

If a person is honking continuously and dangerously coming close to your vehicle, the best tip would be to allow him to overtake you. One of the main components of safe driving in Dubai is to let the other person pass through without any fights or commotion.

2.Minimum distance must be maintained

When you are driving in Dubai, you have to maintain a minimum distance from the car in front of you. This will give you, the motorists and the other vehicles nearby enough time and space to adjust their speeds and apply emergency brakes if there is a need. It is very saddening to note that not many people follow this rule while driving in Dubai.

Many road accidents happen here because of not maintaining the minimum distance requirement. If you make this mistake, you are immediately fined. You may have to cough up a hefty fine of 400Dhs if you don’t follow this rule. Also, you will get 4 black points in your driving career, which can affect your insurance and other requirements. Even if you find other cars cutting in the distance created by your car, you shouldn’t budge. You should always try and adopt the 3-second rule while calculating the distance you have to leave from the car in front of you.

3.Driving on proper lanes

An important lesson that you have to learn while driving in Dubai is lane discipline. The roads have clearly marked lanes on them, and each lane is designed for specified speed limits. You will find the fastest lane on the extreme left of the road. You should use this lane only if you plan to drive at top speeds. If not, you should leave this lane for fast drivers.

If you accidentally use this lane and you see a vehicle approaching at top speed at your back, you should immediately switch on the right indicator lights and give way for it. You need to follow the speed limits of the lane that you are driving in so that it becomes easy for you and others to drive seamlessly. You might find multiple giant-sized 4x4s and sports luxury cars zooming by at top speed in the lanes. When you spot them, the best tip would be to give them room to go by and continue on your journey.

4.Headlights usage

The main purpose of headlights is to provide you with better visibility while driving on dark roads. However, it is a shame that drivers in Dubai and most of the other countries don’t use these headlights for their intended purposes. How many times have you noticed cars at the back of you flashing their headlights very dangerously? While you may find it irritating, you may not want the reason why they are flashing their headlights, especially if you are new to driving in Dubai.

The drivers who flash their headlights are impatient, and they are sending you a message that they want to rush ahead of you. They try to attract your attention by flashing their headlights brightly. When you are put in a situation like this, the best thing would be to change lanes safely and give them room to move ahead. We would never advise you to get into a quarrel with your fellow-drivers because it is not safe to do so.

5.Driving in extreme weather conditions

You will be surprised to know that not many drivers in Dubai know how to drive when the weather becomes foggy, cloudy or rainy. This is because Dubai and most of the other emirates have only hot weather all through the year. When the weather turns unpleasant all of a sudden, the safest thing you should do is to switch over to a slow lane very carefully and keep driving at a slow pace.

Don’t rush or panic. Keep driving slowly with your headlights switched on properly. If the weather conditions deteriorate, you should immediately pull over at a safe place like a garage and wait till the weather improves again, before you start to drive.

6. Using hazard lights properly

When you spot hazards while driving, you should immediately switch on the hazard lights in your car to alert your fellow-drivers on the road. Some of the strange hazards that you might spot only in Dubai and other parts of UAE are camels and goats crossing the roads! When you spot camels, you have to slow down right away because these animals are huge and they can damage your car extensively. Also, if you accidentally kill a camel, you have to pay an exorbitant sum to the camel owner.

You could also use the hazard lights if there is a technical snag in your car. By switching on these lights, you are letting others know that there is a problem with your car and you need help for the same. You should always remember to use these hazard lights only in case of emergencies. Never misuse these, because you could be fined a huge sum for this mistake.

7.Stopping at pedestrian crossings

One of the most important points that you should know about driving in Dubai is that the city gives a lot of importance to its pedestrians. All cars are expected to stop at a safe distance before the pedestrian crossings to give enough room and comfort for the people to cross the roads safely. When you speed by without stopping, you could be fined up to 500Dhs for the same. You could also end with 6black points in your driving record. That’s a huge price, indeed! So, take care of the zebra crossings while you are driving, enjoying a safe drive in Dubai.

8. Indicator lights while changing lanes

While changing lanes, it is very important to switch on the indicator lights in your car, so that the motorist coming at your back is aware of your motive. When you change lanes suddenly, you leave no room for preparation for other motorists, causing them to panic and thereby creating accidents as well.

If you have to change lanes because of a problem in your car, you should switch on your hazard lights. In short, you should let the other motorists know of your plan, so that they have enough time to slow down, adjust their speeds and apply emergency brakes if needed. Failure to switch on indicator lights could attract a fine of around 200Dhs and 3 black points for you.

9. Stay away from trucks

You might find a lot of heavy-duty trucks plying on the roads of Dubai, while you are driving. Our only tip to you to stay away from these trucks as much as possible if you want to drive safely. Never expect these trucks to give you signals such as hazard lights, indicator lights, and so on. They move very fast and more often than not, the truck drivers are too tired to follow these rules. They keep driving for very long distances; therefore, it is you who needs to be prepared to manage these vehicles well, while driving safely in Dubai.

10.Disciplined driving

Never swear at your fellow motorist or show obscene hand gestures while driving in Dubai. The people and police department of Dubai are very sensitive, and they get offended easily when you do these. The police could also revoke your driving license for this mistake! Even if the other person is at fault, you should never be tempted to show him the finger or use cuss words at him. This could land you in serious trouble. Swearing is considered to be an unpardonable mistake across the UAE. So, you need to respect the rules of Dubai and keep your temper in check, if you don’t want to lose your right to drive around the city.


Category: Safe Driving
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