The UAE has a tropical weather similar to Florida with a very hot and humid season extending from July 1-October 1. Rain is rare and peaks in February. You will miss the clouds and get tired of sunshine!


Dubai municipality’s 1400 member parks and landscaping team are keeping the city green around the year. They have an ambitious plan to increase greenery from 3.4% of Dubai urban area to 8% by end of 2011.


Business Hours. The government offices work from 8 am to 2 pm and are closed on Fridays and Saturdays. Banks are generally open 8-1 except Fridays. Large multinational companies and embassies are open 8 am to 6 pm and are off Fridays and Saturdays.


Malls are open 10 am to 10 pm except Fridays when they open at 4 pm. Most physicians work from 8-2 pm and 5:30 to 9 pm with Thursday or Saturday taking half a day and Friday off.


Public transportation. In general the easiest way to get around is by taxi They are safe even late at night. They are much less expensive than Europe or the USA. A five minute ride is 10 Derhams and 20 minutes is 35 Derhams. A tip of 1-2 Derhams is widely appreciated. In restaurants a tip of 10-15% is the norm but is not mandatory..


Driving licenses and Regulation. You may drive with your foreign driving license until you get a work visa (Iqama) after which you must obtain a local UAE driving license. Holders of European or American licenses can get the UAE license without an exam or test.


Dubai and Abu Dhabi are cities full of radars and hidden cameras. Speeding tickets carry a 500 Derhams penalty while crossing a red light is a 1500 Derhams penalty and a two week car confiscation. Seat belts are mandatory. Parking tickets are 100 Derhams. Fines can be paid by internet. Parking meters are charged from 7am till 1pm and from 4pm till 9pm. 1-4 PM is free.


Drivers in UAE can be very dangerous so be very careful. It is best to avoid the extreme left lane to avoid tailgaters who can be very aggressive. The right of way at traffic circles is always for the car which is already in the circle; a system North American driver may not be used to.