My First Experience With Car Rental in Dubai

Dubai, a city renowned for its towering skyscrapers, luxurious lifestyle, and vibrant cultural scene, has always been at the top of my travel bucket list. When I finally got the chance to visit, I knew that to make the most of my time, I needed the freedom to explore at my own pace. This led me to the decision to rent a car during my stay. Here’s a detailed account of my first experience with car rental in Dubai, offering insights and tips for anyone considering the same.

Arrival at Dubai International Airport

Upon landing at Dubai International Airport, I was immediately taken aback by the grandeur and efficiency of the facility. Having pre-booked my rental car through Friends Car Rental, I was eager to get started on my adventure without any delay. One of the major conveniences was the option to rent a car at Dubai Airport, which saved me the hassle of finding transportation to the city.

Picking Up the Car

After collecting my luggage and clearing customs, I headed to the car rental desk where I was greeted by a friendly representative. The process was quick and efficient. Within minutes, I had the keys to my car and was ready to start my Dubai journey. The seamless process set a positive tone for the rest of my trip.

Exploring Dubai with My Rental Car

Having a rental car in Dubai provided me with unmatched freedom to explore the city’s diverse attractions. From the architectural marvel of the Burj Khalifa to the historic Al Fahidi District, my itinerary was packed, and having a car made everything easily accessible.

The Benefits of Renting a Car in Dubai

  1. Flexibility and Freedom: Renting a car allowed me to explore Dubai at my own pace. I could make spontaneous stops, extend my stay at certain attractions, and venture off the beaten path whenever I felt like it.
  2. Comfort: Traveling in the comfort of my own car, especially with the city’s sometimes extreme temperatures, was a huge plus. I could control my environment, take breaks when needed, and store my belongings securely.
  3. Cost-Effectiveness: Contrary to my initial assumption, renting a car turned out to be quite economical. The cost of taxis and other transportation options would have added up significantly over the course of my trip.

Navigating Dubai’s Roads

Dubai’s road network is well-developed and maintained, making driving a relatively pleasant experience. Here are a few things I noted during my time on the road:

1. Traffic Rules and Regulations

Dubai has strict traffic regulations, and it’s important to adhere to them to avoid fines. Speed limits are clearly posted, and there are numerous speed cameras. Familiarizing yourself with local driving laws before you arrive is highly recommended.

2. Parking

Parking is generally easy to find, though it can be expensive in some areas. Many attractions and malls offer ample parking spaces, and valet services are common at hotels and shopping centers.

3. GPS and Navigation

Using a GPS or navigation app is crucial for getting around. Dubai’s extensive and sometimes complex road network can be challenging to navigate without it. My rental car came equipped with a reliable GPS system, which made my travels smooth and stress-free.

Day Trip to Abu Dhabi

One of the highlights of my trip was a day excursion to Abu Dhabi. The drive from Dubai to Abu Dhabi takes about 90 minutes and is a pleasant journey along a well-maintained highway. Visiting the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque was a profound experience, and having my own car allowed me to explore Abu Dhabi at my own pace.

Renting a Car with a Driver in Dubai

For one of the days, I decided to rent a car with a driver in Dubai to experience the city from a different perspective. This option was perfect for a relaxed sightseeing tour. The driver was professional and knowledgeable, providing insights into the city’s history and culture that I wouldn’t have gotten otherwise.

Tips for Renting a Car in Dubai

  1. Book in Advance: To ensure availability and get the best rates, book your rental car in advance. Friends Car Rental offers an easy online booking process.
  2. Choose the Right Car: Depending on your needs, choose a car that suits your travel plans. For city driving, a compact car is ideal, while for luxury and comfort, a premium vehicle is the way to go.
  3. Check for Inclusions: Make sure your rental package includes necessary insurances and unlimited mileage if you plan on doing a lot of driving.
  4. Understand the Fuel Policy: Make sure you know how the rental business handles fuel. For some hires, you have to return the car with the gas tank full. For others, it’s not necessary.
  5. Carry Essential Documents: Always have your driving license, passport, and rental agreement with you when driving in Dubai.

Exploring Dubai’s Iconic Landmarks

Having my rental car enabled me to visit some of Dubai’s most famous landmarks with ease.

1. Burj Khalifa

Driving to the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, was straightforward. Parking at The Dubai Mall, which is connected to the tower, was convenient. The view from the top was breathtaking, offering a panoramic vista of the city.

2. The Dubai Mall

The Dubai Mall is a destination in itself. With countless shops, restaurants, and entertainment options, I spent an entire day exploring. The mall’s parking facilities were extensive and made access easy.

3. Jumeirah Beach

A drive to Jumeirah Beach was a perfect way to relax and unwind. The beach’s pristine sands and clear waters provided a refreshing escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. Parking was available nearby, making it an effortless visit.

4. Dubai Marina

Exploring Dubai Marina with its stunning waterfront, luxury yachts, and vibrant nightlife was another highlight. Driving there allowed me to explore at my own pace and stop at various points of interest.


My first experience with car rental in Dubai was nothing short of fantastic. The convenience, flexibility, and freedom it provided made my trip all the more enjoyable. Whether you’re visiting for business or leisure, renting a car in Dubai is a decision you won’t regret. It allows you to explore this magnificent city and beyond at your own pace, making your journey truly unforgettable.

From the moment I decided to rent a car in Dubai, the process was seamless. The ability to pick up my car directly at the airport, explore the city’s diverse attractions, and even take a day trip to Abu Dhabi made my experience thoroughly rewarding. For anyone planning a trip to Dubai, I highly recommend considering a car rental from Friends Car Rental. Whether you need a vehicle for city driving, luxury travel, or a chauffeur-driven ride, they have options to suit every need and preference.