Things to Know Before You Go to Abu Dhabi, UAE

      Want to make the most out of your vacation? Get the answers you need about when to go, what to pack, and what you need to know before you . There are lots of things you should know and plans you should make before you leave for UAE. Here is a list of essential information and things to know before you go to Abu Dhabi.


      Abu Dhabi has got a sub-tropical, arid climate and enjoys sunny clear days year round. The best time to visit Abu Dhabi is during the winter months from November to April, when the temperature averages 24°C (75°F). Summer, from May to October, is very hot, often reaching 49°C (120°F) in July and August with night-time average of 28°C (82°F).


UAE Time Zone: GMT + 04.00
International country code: + 971 (United Arab Emirates)
Area code (Abu Dhabi): 2, Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates.


      Though Arabic is the official language in the UAE, English is widely spoken by the residents of Abu Dhabi. Most airlines, hotels, malls and restaurants employ multilingual staff. Taxi drivers are conversant in English, Arabic, Urdu or Hindi.


      Though Islam is the official religion, Abu Dhabi, like any other emirate of the UAE, is tolerant of other religions. Other religions are respected.


      UAE currency is Dirhams (Dhs), also referred to as AED (Arab Emirate Dirham) which is divided into 100 fils. Money exchanges (bureau de changes) are available all over Abu Dhabi in all major malls and popular shopping centers and offer rates that are often better than the banks. Money Exchange centers are usually open Saturday to Thursday, from 8am to 1pm and 4.30pm to 8.30pm and on Friday evenings.


      Nearly all major retail establishments, hotels and car rental companies accept credit card payment in Abu Dhabi; however it is advisable to carry some loose local currency, in dirham, to use at smaller local stores. International Credit cards like American Express, MasterCard and Visa are widely used in Abu Dhabi.


Normal Office Time: Sunday/Thursday, 8:30 am to 1:00 pm. and 2:00 pm. to 5:30 pm. 
Friday and Saturday normally closed.
Banks: Saturday/Thursday, 8:00 am to 1:00 pm.


      Tap water is safe to drink, but it is advisable to drink bottled water which is served in hotels and restaurants.


      Medical treatment is also available at private and government hospitals and most hotels have in-house nurses or doctors on call.


      The electricity supply in Abu Dhabi and Dubai is 220/240 volts at 50 Hz. Most sockets are three pin, although adapters for two pin plugs are available at most hotels. Adaptors can be purchased in local supermarkets


      Taxi is the most common and preferred method of getting around the emirate. There are around 7,000 taxis doing their service in Abu Dhabi. Women's Taxis were introduced recently in the city. Abu Dhabi Department of Public Transport has launched bus services all over the emirate, as well as in the city. The buses in Abu Dhabi are operated around the clock and fares are very cheap, costing as little as Dhs.1 for travel within the city.  If you need to book a 'rent a car' online, you can use our  search template to compare the car rental prices in Abu Dhabi and book the best deals online.


      The city is home to some of the most modern shopping malls where you can enjoy shopping, dining and watch entertainments. In souks prices can drop dramatically on bargaining. The major outlets in shopping malls quote fixed prices and bargaining is no longer possible. Visit the Madinat Zayed Gold Souk to purchase reasonably priced pieces of jewelries before you drive back to the airport


      It is illegal to eat, drink or smoke in public view during Ramadan fasting hours. The law also applies to everyone and it is not allowed to eat or drink while travelling in a car or bus. For travelers, it is an interesting time to be in Abu Dhabi as hotel prices usually fall and it can be worth visiting the city during Ramadan. Star hotels usually have some restaurant facilities for non-fasting guests hidden from public view.