When is the cheapest time to fly to Dubai?
If you like it hot, hot, hot, then you'll be wanting to fly out during Dubai's peak summer season. That's between May and October, when temperatures will frequently hit above 40 whopping degrees. Most tourists flock to Dubai during these months precisely so they can chase these lovely summer highs. And the highs don't stop there! The best news is that hotel prices are actually at their cheapest during these summer months! Book your 2023 / 2024 trip during the Dubai summer and you'll be taking advantage of the cheapest prices. Sorted.
When is the best time to book flights to Dubai?
It's best to book your flight to Dubai in 2023 / 2024 as soon as you have a fixed arrival date, When you've got that it's go go go! Some airlines, like British Airways, let passengers book their flights 11 months in advance, with the lowest possible fares up for grabs during this time. At any rate, you should definitely look to grab those flights at least six months ahead to avoid the most expensive prices.
How long is the flight to Dubai?
Dubai is actually the shortest long-haul flight from the UK, making it a pretty attractive option if you're looking to book a holiday in 2023 / 2024. If you're setting off from a busy London airport, you can expect to be in the air for just under seven hours. If you're flying from Glasgow, it can be seven and a half. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the onboard snacks and entertainment. And don't forget the travel pillow!
Flying to Dubai International Airport (DXB)
Dubai International Airport is one of the biggest in the Middle East, with both regional and international flights arriving and departing daily. For direct flights, Emirates and British Airways run a number of routes from across the UK. Indirect routes are usually operated by Turkish Airlines, Etihad Airways, Gulf Air, Lufthansa, and SWISS. Often, flying direct to Dubai in 2023 / 2024 can actually be cheaper than flights with a stopover, so it's better to try and fly to Dubai direct where possible. These direct routes typically run from London Heathrow and Gatwick, but a limited number of direct flights are run from smaller, regional airports like Manchester and Birmingham if you'd rather have less travel time from home to plane!
But if you do choose to fly indirectly, there's plenty of flexibility when it comes to planning your trip. Common stopovers on flights to Dubai include Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Istanbul, and Bahrain. And while this does extend the duration of your flight, you can also think of it as a chance to visit another city before touch down in Dubai. Two for the price of one?
On arrival and getting around the airport
So, Dubai has three main terminals. Depending on your flight, you could arrive at Terminal 1, which is for international flights, Terminal 2, which is for your regional and low-cost airlines, or Terminal 3, which is typically reserved for Emirates and Qantas flights. If you need to travel between terminals, there's a free shuttle bus service and a free metro to get you where you need to be. Once you're through security, you'll find a wide range of services to make your trip that little bit easier, including Wi-Fi, currency exchanges, shops, car rental, and even home check-in services, depending on the details of your flight. Wanna shop? Browse one of the many, many boutiques. Brought your trunks with you? Head to the pool, and then slip in a cheeky massage. Peckish? There's a bunch of restaurants on offer. Just want some good old sleep? Catch some ZZZs in one of the state-of-the-art sleep pods.
Getting to the city from Dubai International Airport (DXB)
So, you've touched down in Dubai and grabbed your bags. You're rearing to go and explore, but what next? Well, there's a few ways to get around. One of the most popular ways to travel is the metro, which you can hop straight on from Terminal 1 or 3. The metro runs every 10 minutes and can take you to the heart of Dubai in about 25 minutes. Nice one. But if you get in at Terminal 2, you can grab a bus as they leave from all three. You'll need a Nol card though, as drivers here don't accept cash! You can top the Nol card up just like an Oyster and use it in the same way across other transport. Depending on the terminal, this option will normally take around an hour to reach The Dubai Mall in downtown Dubai. But there's always a taxi, of course, which you can catch from each terminal. Oh, and care hire!
Why visit Dubai?
Once you're all settled in, Dubai is yours to explore. This lavish part of the world turns everything up to 11 with glitzy skyscrapers, world-renowned architecture, and amazing shopping and entertainment destinations.
Dubai's alluring skyline has some of the world's most distinctive architecture. The globally recognised Burj Khalifa towers over the city, big time. The biggest skyscraper in the world, it's a whopping 830 metres tall - so, to be honest, you can hardly bloomin' miss it! Cast your eyes out to sea and you'll catch the Palm Islands, host to some seriously amazing restaurants. The Dubai Marina, meanwhile, is another spot you absolutely MUST visit. This glitzy corner of Dubai is overlooked by some of the city's biggest 'scrapers and is bordered by the lively Beach at JBR. Fancy heading out to sea? Hire a surfboard or windsurf your merry way over the crystal clear waters of the Gulf. And if you're really feeling up to it, why not skydive from the top of some of these whoppin' big buildings? Or maybe for something a bit more peaceful, have a gentle cruise around the marina.
It's no secret that Dubai loves nothing more than glitz and glamour. So, if you're feeling like you need to turn your summer 'fit up a notch, you're defo in the right place. The Dubai Mall is the second biggest shopping centre in the world, with more than 1,200 stores and restaurants to choose from. Now, that's some proper retail therapy right there.
Basically, Dubai does things big. From the world-famous architecture and stunning skyline to the amazing attractions and entertainment - and don't forget that sun - a trip to Dubai is your ticket to one of the world's leisure capitals.
What's happening in Dubai in October?
There's a bunch of familiar faces in town this month, as well as house music festivals and late night riding at the world's biggest waterpark, Aquaventure.
Trevor Noah comes to town as part of his Off the Record stand up tour. Catch him at the Coco-Cola Arena, with tickets from AED295.
Aquaventure After Dark is back this year, and sees the world’s largest waterpark open during the evening with entertainment, live music, food, and – obvs – all the rides.
13th – 15th October
Defected Dubai is a three-day house music festival hosted by Defected Records in 3 spots across Dubai, including a large warehouse party in a never-before-used location at JA The Resort. Look out for Roger Sanchez, Alex Mills, Dennis Ferrer, Hannah Wants, and more.
Temperatures rise (can it get any hotter in Dubai?!) when Sean Paul takes over the Coca-Cola Arena on the 21st of October. Doors open at 7.30pm, and you can grab tickets from AED150.
You can go for a proper spin down memory lane with a Dizzee Rascal gig at Emirates Golf Club on the 28th of October. Tickets from AED225.
1st – 31st October
This October sees Dubai’s first Calligraphy Biennale, organised by the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority. Running month long, drop in at spots across the city to have a look at works by more than 200 local and international artists, as well as get involved in some workshops.
1st – 31st October
Dubai’s first permanent show in its own fancy pants, specially-made ‘aqua theatre’ where rain floods the stage and then drains away just as quick, La Perle by Dragone combines choreography with stunts, aerial acrobatics, and motorcycle tricks in a story that pays homage to the UAE’s pearl diving history. Head to V Hotel in Al Habtoor City.
Don't forget before you fly
When you arrive, you'll be issued with a 30 day tourist visa at immigration control - you don't need to make any advance arrangements for this.
And it's good to note that there are some pretty tight rules around public decency in Dubai that you should always be aware of and respect.
Oh, and it might be a bit obvious but...Dubai is a little bit on the hot side. Pack for the weather - whilst staying appropriate! - and you'll have a much nicer time of things.