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Country Travel

Here you will find a most important informations about United Arab Emirates

United Arab Emirates Map

Simple Facts
Country made up of seven emirates: AbuDhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah

Area
83000 sq. km. includes approx. 2000 islands

Location
Bordered in the North by Arabian Gulf, to the east by The Gulf of Oman and Sultanate of Oman, to the South by the Sultanate of Oman and Saudi Arabia, and to the West by Quatar and Saudi Arabia.
Lies between Latitudes 22 & 26,5 North and Longitudes 51& 56,5 East

Population
Almost 2,5 milion

Religion
The dominate religion is Islam

Language
The official language is Arabic. English, Hindi, Urdu and Farsi are widely spoken

Currency
Dirhams, 1 Dh = 100 files, 1 US$=3,67 Dh

Climate
Between November and March warm sunny days with average temperature of 26 C (79F) and cool nights with average temperature of 16 C (58 F). Summer months are hot and humid with temperatures up to 41 C (105 F)

Visas

Most visitors to the UAE need an entry visa. This is the best obtained through a sponsor within the UAE. British passport holders with the right to abide in Great Britain may obtain a visa at the airport upon arrival. Transit visas are valid for 14 days, tourist ones for 30 days and visit visas for 30 days but can be renewed for up total 100 days. Citizens of GCC countries may enter without a visa. Persons travelling on Israeli passport or who have Israeli stamped passport will be denied entry. The fine for overstaying is 100 Dh. per one day.
Duty Free Allowances
Visitors are allowed 2000 cigarettes or 400 cigars or 2 kg of tobacco and reasonable quantity of perfume. Customs There is no restriction of the amount of currency that can be brought into the UAE and no customs duty on personal effects.

Getting around


Car rentals
There are car rental offices in each of the emirates offering all makes and sizes of cars. Cars can either be rented alone or with driver. Rates vary but are around Dh 120 a day for a small car and up to Dh. 1000 a day for a chauffeur driven limousine. You will need to provide a copy of your passport and driver's license if payment is by credit card.

Driving license

Individuals from the following countries do not need an international license: ECC countries, Canada, Japan, North Korea, South Korea, Turkey and USA.
Helicopter hire
Helicopters and fixed wing aircraft can be hired in AbuDhabi, Dubai and Sharjah. You need a license from the authorities to access the airport and must submit a flight plan. Rates range from US$ 1200 to US$ 6000 per hour.

Transportation

Taxis form a common means of getting around town. AbuDhabi and Dubai have plenty of metered taxis that can be hired for Dh 5-20. There are many unmetered taxis as well, so it is best to agree upon the fare in advance. For long distance journeys, it is common to share taxis.
Utilities

Electricity
The electricity supply is 220/240 volts at 50 Hz. Visitors from Europe can use their appliances although outlet adapters may be necessary. Appliances from the USA will need transformers.

Water
Water comes from desalination plants and is safe to drink. Many people still prefer to drink bottled water that is available in shops and restaurants.

Telecommunications

Telephone service is excellent through the UAE. Calls within cities are free. There is small charge for calls within the rest of the country. Pay phones are operated with a phone card that is issued by the Telecommunication Company in various amounts and is then used as a debit card. These are generally available at a variety of outlets in the town. Major hotels have fax and telex services and can arrange for modem access if necessary.

Television
There are nine television stations in the UAE. Some broadcast in Arabic, some in English and some have special programs in Urdu, Hindi, and French. Several additional stations are available via satellite and cable.

Radio
Stations broadcasting in Arabic and English transmit 24 hours a day.

Shopping-Business hours

Shops are generally open from 9.30 am to 1 PM. And from 4.30 PM to 9.30 pm on Saturday through Thursday. Many shops in the malls are open all day, which offers, foe shopping without crowds. On Friday, the Islamic holiday shops do not generally open until 2.00 PM or later.

Bargaining
Part of the tradition of shopping in the UAE is bargaining over the price. In other shops except for truly fixed prices stores a bit of negotiating will bring a reduction of price. If you have to ask for the price of something it means the price is not fixed. Credit Cards Most hotels and finer restaurants accept credit cards such as American Express, Visa, MasterCard and diner Club. Some larger shops do as well.


Health matters


Immunization

No health certificate or special immunizations are required when travelling to the UAE unless you have been in cholera or yellow Fever affected area 14 days prior to visiting. It is wise to check with your travel agent before traveling, however, should the situation change.

Coping with the heat

For eight months of the year the Emirates is hot and along the coast humid. It is important that the visitor take precautions not to over exert. All hotels and restaurants are air conditioned as are most shops but outside it's still hot. Try to limit going in and out of the air conditioning and make sure to drink plenty of fluids when outside for a long time.

Clothing
Local dress for both men and women loosely covers the head, arms and legs. Fabrics are lightweight and of natural fibbers. There are no restrictions of a dress code for visitors. Summer clothing is suitable all year around with sweaters or light jackets being needed at night in the winter months.

Medical care
Even the smallest emirate is now equipped with a modern hospital so there is no need to worry about the availability of health care. Most major cities have several hospitals and abundance of private clinics, should you be in need.


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