We all have had that day when our time has come to go out onto Dubai's roads which can appear as a frightening task if you are not habitual with fast and large roads. Here are some top tips on driving in Dubai and what to expect on the roads- the good, the bad and the ugly- and how to stay calm and safe whilst behind the wheel in Dubai.
Many drivers do not keep a safe distance. Consider the three second rule – always stay three seconds away from the car in front. This will adjust for speed. You will find that you have left a safe space and someone else will sneak in and fill it- it's going to be up to you to pull back a bit to maintain the safe space again.
There are numerous accidents on Dubai streets and traffic reaches stand still normally on the two sides of the streets, the gawpers on the opposite side cause tail backs there as well. However, remember, it's really unlawful to rubberneck in Dubai so keep in mind not to gawp too long.
You will encounter numerous powerful cars on the roads in Dubai from giant 4x4s to the suped-up sporty numbers and some of those prefer to go really very fast. This has enhanced over the years as there are fewer cars doing this now than in the past, the SZR appears like a race track however the launch of speed cameras and the minimum speed limit to 100 has actually helped. Even so, there will yet be the strange speed freak that drives as if they are playing a computer game. It is advisable to stay out of their way.
Flashing your headlights usually does not signify “after you” – as in other countries. It usually denotes get out of the way I am coming through ready or not. At times this might be the police and you are believed to move out of their way. Normally that driver is raring to go by using this technique. You can ignore this by being out of the fast traffic lane and use your back mirror a lot- you will see the speed freaks coming. Thus, you can move over earlier than they get to the flashing headlights period. If you can't move over then stay calm and don't panic and move over just when it is secure to do so.
There are road hazards that you might not have encountered in your home country so be careful! Camels and goats are often found on the roads outside of Dubai- you should always be alert of the road. Slow down if you see camels as if you slay a camel with your car you have to compensate the owner blood money.