When you’re in Dubai and you get a good look at the five-star hotels that dominate the skyline, the huge malls, cars worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, and the restaurants devoted to the rich and famous, it can be easy to assume that Dubai is out of your budget. However, with a bit of research, you’ll find plenty of experiences that won’t break the bank.
Keep in mind that regardless of your budget, if you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel, and a hospital stay overseas can have a catastrophic impact on your finances if you’re uninsured. Be sure to take travel insurance with you before you go to Dubai or anywhere else outside of your home country.
Here are just a few budget-friendly experiences you can enjoy in Dubai:
Cheap, delicious food
We all know that Dubai is a melting pot, but this is true for both the cuisine and the people who live here. There are plenty of budget versions of your favourite dishes as long as you know where to look, so check out Ravi which is located in Al Satwa and known for its incredible Pakistani curry and huge naan breads, or visit Zaroob or Zaatar Z Weit for delicious Levant street food like Shawarma.
If you’ve thought about heading to Dubai, you’re probably well aware that the expensive bars are known to be the place to go for the wealthiest among us. However each week you’ll find a ladies night at almost every bar (usually Tuesday or Wednesday), and guys will enjoy Maya which is located at Le Royal Meridien on Sundays, while girls will love Left Bank every Wednesday.
Shop ’til you drop
Most people are aware that Dubai is the biggest mall in the world, but it’s also pretty pricey. Instead, go to the Creek and haggle in the traditional souks like you’ve travelled back in time 100 years. You’ll find frankincense, gold, and spices like cinnamon and saffron in Deira, and if you head to the Bur Dubai bank you’ll find the best Arabian style slippers, pashminas and more. Be sure to haggle hard!
It’s easy to assume that Dubai is all about its six-lane highways and skyscrapers, however you’ll find Al Safa Park is a great place to visit if you’re looking to relax and enjoy the outdoors. The park was built back in the days where the tallest buildings were just two-stories high, and you’ll now find many free barbeque pits for a nice lunch, and families love to visit and soak up the sun. Be sure to check out the flea market which is here weekly.
Learn about Dubai
For those who like to learn about history, head to Dubai Museum and you’ll see just how fast Dubai has grown and changed in the last 40 years. You’ll get to learn all about how life was for the Emiratis and Bedouins in the past, and the museum is well worth a visit.