Understanding Dubai Rules

Dubai’s tourism industry has significantly contributed in spreading understanding and peace in the Middle East. Dubai is made up of an expansive number of ethnicities, nationalities and people with a wide range of faith, who all work together to make a very harmonious society. There are a few rules in Dubai to keep in mind when visiting, but it is not as strict as some are led to believe.  This article highlights a few rules and Dubai laws to keep in mind, but rather than stopping you from having a fantastic time on your trip to Dubai, actually help to keep Dubai one of the safest destinations in the world to visit.

Further information can be found in Free Guide Book:

Beachgoers, both men and women, can wear normal swimwear on the beach. Bikinis for women are acceptable, although the bikini bottoms shouldn’t be a thong. Swim shorts for men are fine. Nudity is not permitted, and women should not go topless.

Public displays of affection are discouraged in Dubai, even between married couples. Handholding or innocent affection is fine but keep the passionate kisses and heavy petting behind closed doors when you are here to avoid trouble.

Understanding Dubai Rules

Like in many countries, illicit drugs are strictly illegal. Possessing, purchasing or offering any sort of prohibited substance, in any amount, is illegal and attracts harsh penalties. If you are on medication, it is best to check if it is on the banned medication list before visiting: http://www.uaeinteract.com/travel/drug.asp


Alcohol can be consumed in Dubai at the many bars and clubs and Dubai has a vibrant nightlife. However, you can’t drink outside of licenced venues and you need to be careful not to demonstrate drunken behaviour in public.

Dubai has tightened up its smoking laws in the past decade and it is not permitted in government offices, shopping centres and shops. Restaurants often have smoking and non-smoking sections or don’t allow it at all.

The symbols of the state
Everyone must show respect for the images of the United Arab Emirates’ rulers, banner, and national insignia.  Keep in mind that the misuse of any of those images is against the law.

Seat belts and mobile phones
Drivers and travellers must wear their seat belt, although it is not enforced in the backseats of a car. Not buckling up can attract a fine. There are no rules on Child Car seats so you may have trouble finding a taxi with them if you are travelling with young children. Using a mobile phone whilst driving is illegal.

Littering and spitting
Spitting in public and littering (including cigarette butts) is viewed as an offense and subject to fines. Be careful of how you dispose of your trash in the desert as we strive to keep it beautiful for all.

Understanding Dubai Rules

Photographs of individuals, and particularly photographs of ladies and families, should not be taken without their consent. Taking photographs of individuals is a touchy issue in Dubai’s culture so its best to stick to photographing Dubai’s beautiful scenery or a few selfies of you and your travel companions. You will have plenty of snaps for Instagram after your holiday!

The UAE is one of the safest destinations in the world and its rules and customs support this. Keep these few of these things in mind and make the most of your vacation in Dubai. For more information, please download our Free Guide to Dubai Rules and Etiquette for Tourists here.