Dubai Transportation Guide

Dubai has a well-developed public transportation system, including metro, tram, bus, and water transport. You can easily reach the bustling city center or the beautiful waterfront scenery by using public transport. If you are visiting Dubai for the first time, you must get this transportation guide!


The all-in-one card: Nol card

In Dubai, you don't have to worry about transportation problems. You can visit all the attractions by relying on public transport alone! There are many types of transportation for you to choose from, not only metro, tram, bus, but also water transport, and even self-driving. Each mode can ensure the smoothness of your itinerary.


The first thing you need to do when you arrive in Dubai is to get an all-in-one card: Nol card. When you take public transport, you can easily swipe your card and enjoy Dubai. The cost is much cheaper than taking a taxi, and it saves you the trouble of buying tickets and getting change with cash.


Nol card is divided into four types: gold card, silver card, blue card and red card (ticket). The blue card is a real-name card, and the red card is a paper ticket. You can buy Nol cards at bus stations and metro stations nearby, metro ticket offices, RTA customer service centers, etc. Different cards have different fares.




For tourists who have just arrived in Dubai, the starting point of their trip is the airport. There are Nol automatic ticket machines at terminals 1, 2 and 3 and the duty-free zone in Dubai. You can get an all-in-one transportation card and start your journey afterwards.



Dubai Metro is divided into red line and green line. It is the longest driverless urban transportation network in the world. It adopts car compartment grading and is controlled by computer. In Dubai Metro, you can enjoy comfortable seats, high-speed WiFi, and even audio-visual entertainment system!


The red line has 29 stations and is 52.1 kilometers long. The starting station is Al Rashidiya station and the terminal station is Jebel Ali station. The main stations include Airport Terminal 1 station, Airport Terminal 3 station, Burj Khalifa/ The Dubai Mall station, Mall of the Emirates station, etc., connecting many famous attractions.




The green line has 20 stations and is 22.5 kilometers long. The starting station is Etisalat station and the terminal station is Dubai Creek station. The main stations are Union station, Dubai Creek station, etc. If you want to go to the old city area to experience the traditional Arabic charm, you can take the green line to get there smoothly!


⏰ Operating hours:


  • Red line - Saturday to Wednesday: 5:00-24:00; Thursday: 5:00-next day 1:00; Friday: 10:00-next day 1:00
  • Green line - Saturday to Wednesday: 5:30-24:00; Thursday: 5:30-next day 1:00; Friday: 10:00-next day 1:00
  • Official website:
  • Payment method: Use Nol card to pay           




1. The first compartment of the train is a VIP compartment, and the second compartment is a special compartment for women and children.

2. Smoking, eating, drinking water and littering are not allowed on the train.



Dubai Tram is 10.6 kilometers long and located near Dubai Marina. The compartments are clean and comfortable, and it is a very convenient way of transportation. The tram has 11 stations and connects with the metro. The main stations are Dubai Marina station, Jumeirah Palm Island station, etc. If you want to enjoy the fresh scenery along the coast, you can take the tram.




⏰ Operating hours:


  • Sunday to Thursday: 6:00-next day 1:00,
  • Friday: 9:00-next day 1:00
  • Official website:




1. Like the metro, the tram also has different types of special compartments.

2. Smoking, eating, drinking water and littering are not allowed on the train.

3. The tram only operates in zone 2 and does not involve crossing zones, so no matter how many stations you take, the fare is the same. That is, silver card costs 3 dirhams, red card costs 4 dirhams, gold card costs 6 dirhams.




Dubai Bus has a total of 119 routes covering most areas of the city. It is the cheapest way of transportation. There are 1518 buses running on Dubai's roads every day, divided into three types: standard buses, extended buses and double-decker buses. Dubai bus platforms are equipped with air conditioning, so you can keep your mood happy while waiting for the bus.


Important bus stations include: Gold Souk station, Al Ghubaibah station, etc.




⏰ Operating hours:


  • The operating hours of each route are different, please visit the official website for details.
  • Official website:




1. Smoking, eating and drinking are prohibited on the bus.

2. Press the button before getting off the bus so that the driver can stop in time.

3. Get on the bus from the front door and get off from the back door.



Water Transport

Water transport is a characteristic mode of transportation in Dubai. There are currently three options: water bus, Abra and ferry. Come and enjoy the Dubai Marina with many skyscrapers, the quiet and elegant Dubai Creek and the golden beach of Dubai coastline!


The water bus route is around Dubai Marina. It has a panoramic cabin. Along the way, you can see the beautiful scenery on the shore. It will be especially nice to take it in the evening.


Abra comes from the Arabic word "Abara", which means "crossing the river". It is the most traditional mode of transportation in Dubai and a symbol of history and culture. Take a quaint wooden boat to cruise Dubai Creek, and the air is filled with the unique aroma of spices. Close your eyes and you will feel like you are back in the past. This unforgettable experience only costs 1 dirham.

If you want to explore the coastline of the city, then taking a ferry is a good choice. Dubai Ferry has five routes, with comfortable environment, cruising between the banks, and enjoying the magnificent buildings on both sides.


Water bus:


⏰ Operating hours: Saturday to Thursday: 10:00-23:00, Friday and public holidays: 12:00-24:00




1. Dubai Marina Walk-Marina Terrace

2. Dubai Marina Mall-Marina Promenade

3. Dubai Marina Walk-Dubai Marina Mall

water bus





1. Bur Dubai Abra Station-Deira Old Souk Abra Station (round trip) (operating hours: 6:00-24:00)

2. Dubai Old Souk Station-Al Sabhkha Abra Station (round trip) (operating hours: 24 hours)