If you are considering booking a self-catering holiday apartment or villa in Dubai make sure it is properly licensed. The new law for Holiday Home Rentals in Dubai has been in effect since June 2014, making it illegal to rent a home for vacation rentals without holding a valid permit issued by the DTCM - Dubai Tourism Department.
LICENSED HOLIDAY HOME RENTAL COMPANIES
Holiday Home permits are only issued to local operators based in Dubai, if you are dealing with a person or company outside of Dubai please check first if they hold an operators license and a unique official permit for the property you are about to book. If they do not have both of these, we suggest you steer well clear. Whilst websites like HomeAway, TripAdvisor and AirBnb make it easy to rent a holiday home in Dubai direct from the owner, many owners are still not aware of the new local rules.
It’s also illegal to rent part of your home, like a spare bedroom, accommodation sharing is strictly not allowed as a commercial activity in Dubai. We recommend avoiding this type of rental to stay on the right side of the local laws.
The internet is a great place to research and find cheap accommodation in Dubai, but can also turn into your worst nightmare if you get caught out booking with the wrong host. As the local authorities roll out the new rules it is becoming more difficult to operate without a local licence, good news for the protection of visitors like you
MAKE SURE YOUR PAYMENT IS SAFE
Be careful, internet scams where fake listings are added to online classified portals can catch you out if you are not alert. You will probably call a mobile number, be asked to pay for your booking by direct bank transfer, and then when you arrive you find your booking or property does not exist! Events like this, although rare, can occur where the real owner is not aware about you or your booking. If you have booked with a properly licensed operator based in Dubai then you are guaranteed your booking is legitimate, the property holds a permit, and the company is registered locally.
We also recommend that you always make payment by credit card whenever possible, especially if you are outside of Dubai or the UAE. Your credit card company acts as a guarantee that they have checked th...
Dubai Ramadan Night Market
If you love shopping, then you already know Dubai is a hotspot for some of the most exclusive brands from across the globe. However during Ramadan you can now shop throughout the night, between Iftar and Suhoor, so buy some last minute gifts, walk off your food or just pass time between all the interestingly colourful stalls.
At the Ramadan Night Market retailers from across the world will be offering a wide variety of product’s and everything you need for Eid, bringing their own cultural heritage to this cosmopolitan city. If you don’t want to shop you can still enjoy the market with new experiences and loads of exciting activities and events planned for the entire family.
Bring the Kids
Shop till you drop while your kids have a ball at the Ramadan night market’s very own “Kids Play Area” which is fully equipped to handle the naughtiest of your little ones. From face painting, sand art, bouncy castles, nail art, mini basketball court, wall c...
If you’ve been contemplating the idea of holidaying in Dubai for a little while, this list is certain to sway you. There are hundreds of reasons why the thriving city is worth a visit, but we’ve decided to tempt and tease you with just 17.
1. It’s one of the safest places in the whole world
2. It’s home to amazing shopping malls…
Poco a poco under CC by SA 3.0
3. …and incredible food
GillyBerlin under CC by 2.0
4. The beaches are beautiful…
Fabio Achilli under CC by 2.0
5. ...and offer breathtaking sunsets
Kemal Kestell under CC by ND 2.0
6. The weather is always warm…
7. …yet you can still ski in real snow all year round!
Todd vanGoethem under CC by ND 2.0
8. The architecture will wow you!
Bhargavi Jannu under CC by 2.0
9. And transport is cheap!
Fabio Achilll under CC by 2.0
10. The nightlife is buzzing...
The Palm Jumeirah is one of Dubai’s most iconic landmarks, and is instantly recognisable from an aerial view thanks to its fanned palm shape from which it gained its name. But if you’re thinking of booking one of our luxurious Palm Jumeirah villas, what is there to see and do on this iconic man-made island?
Well, quite a lot actually. Here’s our pick of the best things to do on the Palm Jumeirah.
Fly High with a Helicopter Ride
(image: Desert Safari Dubai)
The only way to really appreciate this island’s unique topography is from the air, so get high and make the most of the wonderful views by booking a ride with Emirates Helicopter Tours. This can be a little pricey but a helicopter ride is an unforgettable experience like no other.
There’s a helipad located at the Atlantis Resort on the Palm Jumeirah where you can either get a private or shared flight for up to 6 people. And whatever your budget, there will be a price option for you, with varying flight durations from 15minutes to an hour long.
Splash Around at a Waterpark
If you’ll be travelling with family or you’re simply a big kid at heart, you’ll love a trip to the number one waterpark in the Middle East and Europe found right here on the Palm Jumeirah.
Spend a day at Aquaventure sliding down the Tower of Poseidon and Tower of Neptune rides, float along the river rapids and enjoy some family fun in the children’s play area. This is the perfect place to cool down during a hot summer day in Dubai.
Dance the Night Away at N’Dulge Nightclub
Come see why @Ndulge terrace is THE place to be seen!! pic.twitter.com/pNxB5qLe
— N'DULGE Club (@Ndulge) January 12, 2012
If you’re after a more grown-up experience, then spend an evening at the renowned N’D...
At My Dubai Stay, we’re passionate about this fantastic city, and we really believe that everyone should experience all that it has to offer at least once in their lives.
It really does have everything you could want from a holiday destination, and marries the traditional with the ultra-modern while encompassing everything in between. But you shouldn’t just take our word for it, after over a decade of taking care of visitors to Dubai, you’ll have to forgive us for being a little biased.
If you’re going to let anyone convince you to get on that plane, it should be those who’ve travelled the globe, seen it all, and still feel like Dubai is worth coming back to for more.
These guys have seen the world and made it their mission to share their love of travel with anyone who will listen.
They recount their highlights and chronicle their lows, all so we can get the best out of every journey we make, and at My Dubai Stay we often find ourselves perusing their sites for insider tips, little-known hangouts and the not-to-be-missed attractions of all of the cities we hope to be able to visit one day.
This got us thinking, what if we could get some of these expert tips on Dubai and put them together in one place? Wouldn’t that be a fantastic resource for anyone looking to experience all that Dubai’s got to offer?
With that in mind, we reached out to a few of our favourites, and they were more than willing to contribute their thoughts. So, grab a pen, and maybe a cup of tea, and get jotting down some ideas for a Dubai holiday of a lifetime.
Dubai stands for skyscrapers and... the desert! Rent a car for 1-2 days and drive into the desert to get a better understanding of Dubai.
I've headed into the mountains, without knowing where I was going, and I was very positively surprised by this beautiful rocky landscape. It's just like 1.5 hours’ drive, and on the way you could stop at one of the quad rentals and jump some dunes.
Just don't do it with your rental car!
Why not see Dubai and the surrounding desert from a completely different perspective? A hot air balloon ride can take you on a unique, personal journey over an endless ocean of sand dunes and emerald green oases.
From above you can observe oryx, gazelles and wandering camels and witness a breath-taking sunrise with the backdrop of the majesti...
If you’re lucky enough to be in Dubai between 21 June and 29 August then you may want to pay a visit to Dubai Sports World. With a week full of fun activities to take part in or spectate at, you will never have a dull moment!
Here’s what you can expect:
Image via Instagram
The first grass roots programme takes place midway through June. This session is open to the public and with a wide range of sports to engage in, this is definitely something that’s geared towards the beginners so is a great way to try something you’ve always wanted to.
If you love football and are travelling in a group then you may be interested in trying your hand in the League of Champions 7-a-side which takes place throughout June, July and August. These games take place throughout the evening, with a winner announced at each event – however if you to continue your winning streak then you can always come back for more!
Dubai Sports World also plays host to Duplays Ramadan Football 5-a-side cup, entry is AED 500 for individuals of AED 3150. Whether you’re just looking to get some exercise on holiday or just want to do something a little bit different, be sure to get involved if you love football!
You’ll also find Duplays Ramadan Basketball Cup in this spectacular venue. This 3v3 event is very quick, high scoring and a blast to watch or play! At just AED 300 per team entry, it’s well worth entering your family as a day out.
Fancy watching something completely different? Come to Dubai Spo...
Situated just south of the Palm Jumeirah, Dubai Marina is one of the world’s largest and most luxurious waterfront communities.
At 50million square foot, this incredible man-made marina is perfect for exploring by foot or by boat, and there are plenty of places available for you to stop, rest and enjoy the view.
For some great ideas on how to spend your trip Dubai Marina, take a look at our helpful guide, but whatever you do, make sure to stay ‘til after sunset when its beautiful lights can be seen at their best.
Dubai Marina Walk
Dubai is world-famous for its awe-inspiring skyline, but of all these impressive structures, those located at Dubai Marina have emerged as some of the most fascinating.
Take a stroll along the promenade at sunset, however, and these building truly do take on a life of their own. As they light up one by one, you’ll see the spectacle reflected on the water, and believe us, it’s a sight you’ll never forget.
(Image: Bettyx1138 under CC BY 2.0)
Dubai Marina Mall
Dubai Marina Mall has everything you could ever want from an entertainment complex, but it’s its location that makes it that little bit special.
Inside, its mix of high street and high-end fashion boutiques mean you’ll find something to suit all tastes, and if you want to stop for a bite to eat, many of its fantastic restaurants have outdoor seating overlooking the marina – perfect for watching the world go by!
Sky Dive Dubai
Not one for the faint-hearted, but surely the best way to see Dubai Marina is from 1...
Are you planning a trip away to one of our wonderful holiday apartments in Dubai? Well, what are you going to do when you’re there? Sunbathing is always a good idea, and a trip up the Burj Khalifa is a must, but have you ever thought about checking the events calendar to see what’s going on when you’re in the UAE?
Here’s our pick of the best family-friendly events in Dubai, during summer 2015:
Dubai Events 2015
Dubai Summer Surprises 2015 – 23rd July to 5th September
Everyone likes surprises, right? Well, most seem to here in the UAE, as the Dubai Summer Surprises (DSS) series of events is the highlight of the city’s summer calendar.
But what exactly is DSS? This 6 week event has run since 1998 and provides fun entertainment and activities for all the family.
This festival draws in huge crowds of tourists and local bargain hunters, as 6,000 shops offer bargains in conjunction with the annual event. Dubai’s malls will all hold their own events for children, perfect to entertain them while you adults shop.
Dubai Pro Wrestling Live! – 12th June
(image:Dubai Pro Wrestling’s Facebook)
If you have older children or teenagers who love WWE fight nights on TV, then they’ll be dying to attend this professional wrestling showdown.
See the smackdown between stars, such as Savage Sam, Lord Socrates, Blue Lightening and let’s not forget, female Arab wrestler, Joelle. Who will win the fight at the HM Fitness Centre? You’ll have to buy tickets to find out!
Modhesh World 2015 – 9th July to 29th August
(image:Modhesh World’s Facebook)
Are you a bit of a bargain hunter? Then we’re sure you’ll love to explore the local shops when holidaying in exotic climes. Perhaps you’ve always been tempted to travel with a half empty suitcase and to stock up on essential items once you arrive at your destination? If this sounds like you, then you’ll love Dubai.
Dubai is famed for its great shopping in its ginormous modern malls, but for a sense of the real United Arab Emirates, spend a day meandering through the stalls at one of the area’s traditional Arab souks.
Here is a brief look at each of Dubai’s souks and what bargain buys you can expect to find there:
Souk Al Bahar
Are you planning a vacation to stay in one of our amazing holiday apartments in Dubai? Then we’d recommend you make the short walk downtown to the Souk Al Bahar.
Made of ornately carved stone, this market place is far from the usual concrete squares we have become accustomed to in the UK. In fact, Souk Al Bahar is rather chic. Visit here for your souvenirs, antiques and carpets.
This modern bazaar is a mere stone’s throw away from the Dubai fountain, the Dubai Mall and the surrounding restaurants and bars, making it the ideal spot for refuelling after a busy afternoon flexing your bartering skills.
(image:Joi ItounderCC BY 2.0)
If you’re like a magpie and love all things that glitter, you will be mesmerised by Dubai’s Gold Souk. Found on Sikkat Al Khail St, just 2 minutes from the Palm Deira metro station, this market sells nothing but gold (and the occasional piece of silver).
It’s estimated that over 25 tonnes of gold is for sale here at any given time, with its hundreds of stores selling almost every jewellery design imaginable. Whether you’re in the market for some bling or not, a walk through these glimmering walkways is a must.
Get a taste of Egypt in the middle of the United Arab Emirates by visiting the Wafi City Souk in this standout hotel and residential complex complete with pyramids and hieroglyphics. Wander through the many streets or step inside one of the area’s best restaurants for a meal.
Plan your trip around the 9:30pm light and sound show, or if you’re planning a visit during cooler months, there is a free outdoor movie screening night every Sunday.
Foodies will love the colours and aromas that surround this magnificent spice market. Get the metro to Al Ras and you’ll find this bustling souk on...
When you imagine a holiday to Dubai what do you think of? Posh hotels, expensive souks and long walks down the beach?
Dubai is an extreme sports paradise! Don’t believe us, well here are eight awesome things to do in Dubai:
How about an adventure down under? No, not Australia… under the sea! There are plenty of reefs, wrecks and rocky islands to explore off the coast of Dubai, all with an abundance of marine life.
Whether you’ve been scuba diving before or if this is your first time, there are plenty of guides, schools and tours available to ensure you have the best possible underwater experience.
Motocross Adventure Touring
Dubai has a great big desert that’s perfect for motocross, so if you’re a petrol head with a passion for sandy, speedy adrenaline then this is definitely the place to go.
The dunes provide an awesome natural playground for you to rip around, launch bikes over and generally mess around in. If you think you’ve had fun on a motocross bike before then you ain’t seen nothing yet!
Sand Surfing in Dubai
Sticking with the desert for a bit longer, but motocross isn’t the only way to enjoy the possibilities that the sand dunes present.
Sand surfing is extremely popular here with both the locals, tourists and even sports superstars, like Caroline Wozniacki.
There are plenty of tours available that take you to some of the best dunes available, so wherever you stay in Dubai you’ll be well located to make the most of this activity.
Image by Wikimedia under CC-BY-3.0
Another one for the petrol heads here, but if you’ve always dreamed of blasting a Ferrari around a track like a slightly slower version of the Stig then this is where you need to be.
Home to Ferrari World, you have your pick of...