The Guides

Public transport system in Dubai

A guide to the public transport system in Dubai

Time to park your car and explore the state-of-the-art public transport system that the city offers

Words by Ankita Bhowmick in The Guides · Jun 24th, 2019

The public network system in Dubai is quite extensive and well connected. Controlled by the Road and Transport Authority (RTA), it joins the major locations of the city and is majorly depended upon by residents and tourists as their mode of transport. 

Public Transport in Dubai can only be used with the help of a smart card called 'Nol Card', which lets one access all modes of public transport that include buses, trams, water buses, and the metro system.

Luxhabitat helps you have a detailed look at the public transport system in Dubai.

Dubai Metro

A guide to the public transport system in Dubai

The modern and fully automated rail system of Dubai Metro is also the first urban train network in the Arabian Peninsula. It is an affordable and convenient mode of transportation that is hugely relied upon by the residents for commuting on a daily basis. 

The metro service features 2 lines, the Red and the Green. The Red Line covers stations between Rashidiya and UAE Exchange (formerly known as Jebel Ali).  This line remains active from 5.00 am until midnight during Saturdays to Wednesdays and till 1.00 am on Thursdays. On Fridays, the train operates from 10.00 am until 1.00 am. The Green Line, on the other hand, covers the stations between Etisalat and Creek. It operates from 5.30 am till midnights during Saturdays to Wednesdays and till 1.00 on Thursdays. On Fridays, the operation hours are between 10.00 am and 1.00 am. Transfer between the lines can be made at two interchange stations of that of Union and Burjuman (formerly known as Khalid Bin Al Waleed). The trains are quite frequent and arrive around every 4 minutes during peak hours and every 7 minutes during the off-peak hours.


A guide to the public transport system in Dubai

Commuters can hail taxis from the roadside or even can choose to book them in an advance. When compared to many other metropolitan cities around the world, Dubai Taxis are comparatively more affordable. They are metered so as to avoid ambiguity when it comes to the fares. Also on offer is a Smart Taxi App which allows commuters to book the nearest taxi from their smartphones based on the location. The app is available on iOS as we all on Android devices. Dubai Taxis can also be booked by calling 04-2080808.


A guide to the public transport system in Dubai

Dubai offers a very extensive network of buses that connects 87% of the urban area of the city and makes every corner of it accessible for the commuters. The well-maintained air-conditioned buses are very affordable and are suitable for the areas that are not covered by the Dubai Metro. The buses also connect Dubai to the other emirates of the UAE, a service which no other mode of public transport in Dubai provides.


A guide to the public transport system in Dubai

Linking the Dubai Metro and Palm Monorail, The Dubai Tram runs along Al Sufouh Road and Jumeirah Beach Road. It was launched in 2014 and is considered to be the first type of tram service outside Europe that works on the underground power supply. The Dubai tram network covers a distance of 10.6 km with 11 stations. Featuring air conditioning and Wi-Fi connectivity, each tram is divided into seven cabins. Using the trams are ideal when it comes to the densely populated areas of the city like Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) and Dubai Marina.

Dubai Ferry

A guide to the public transport system in Dubai
Photo Credit: RTA

The best mode of transport to visit the city’s historical sites and striking coastline, Dubai Ferry covers 5 major routes and helps passengers enjoy marine transport in a comfortable and fully air-conditioned environment. Used majorly by tourists, the ferry offers them views of some of the stunning developments of the city, including the Burj Al Arab and the Palm Jumeirah with the iconic Atlantis Hotel.

Dubai Abra

A guide to the public transport system in Dubai

Derived from the Arabic verb “abara” which means to cross, Abra is a half-boat, half-raft mode of transport. It is Dubai's one of the traditional mode of transport and is used for cruising around the Dubai Creek, a spectacular 14-kilometre stretch which divides Deira and Bur Dubai.

Dubai also features air-conditioned Abra that combines the style of traditional water transport and the latest technologies. The cruises are comfortable and sail the commuters alongside the Creek Metro Station. Some of them also sail along Dubai Marina.