Sun, sand, sea and sunsets, a holiday in Dubai is a great way to spend memorable moments with friends. From wallet-friendly accommodation to affordable thrills and spills, the city is an ideal vacation destination for youths and young adults looking for an exotic escape. Whether you’re looking to live like a local, sum each day up with a leisurely stroll under the Arabian sky, capture Instagram-worthy photos, or eat your way through the city, there’s always something to suit every taste and budget. With these wallet-friendly tips, it’s easy to embark on an Arabian getaway with your #BFF without breaking the bank!
SCOOP will like to share with you 4 tips on how you can spend six days, five nights in Dubai for less than SGD 1,800.
#1: Book flight during off-peak season
The earlier you plan your trip, the more affordable your vacation will be. While two-way flights from Singapore to Dubai can cost up to SGD 900++ range, during sales or non-peak seasons they can dip to under SGD 400++! Nowadays, almost all travellers carry their smartphones with them and turning it into a handy travel guide, preferring to research, book flights, hotels and even car rental services while on-the-go.
Credit: Visit Dubai
You may want to consider checking out Visit Dubai to search, compare and book affordable airfares from an even wider range of the city’s airlines. Available to download on both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, make the most of your travel plans with this app by looking for the cheapest dates to fly and best timing to book hotels.
#2: Select an accommodation provider
Stay within the city centre or in Bur Dubai to save on transport.
Three lovely accommodation options for an affordable stay and are accessible by both rail and road.
Offering excellent Emirati hospitality, cosy rooms, fine cuisine and drinks, these boutique three- and four-star hotels provide great amenities without skimping out on comfort or convenience.
For couples and friends who fear missing out on the glamour of glamping, look no further than Arabian Adventures. This beautiful and cosy desert camp promises an off-the-beaten-path experience for SGD 60 – 80, replete with an Emirati dinner and Arabian dance performance that’s worth every dollar!
#3: Stay connected with an overseas SIM
With public WiFi available at most major establishments in Dubai, travellers can easily tap on available networks to surf. For ease of convenience, purchase an Etisalat Visitor Line and top-up card to enjoy data, local calls, text messages and a free Careem ride for SGD 50. There’s an Etisalat booth at the arrival hall of Dubai International Airport for travellers looking to get a 4G prepaid card and top-up card upon arrival.
Book a safe and reliable car ride in seconds with Careem, Dubai’s #1 car booking application. Voted as the Best Local App of 2016 by Google Play Store, this app helps visitors get around the city in a breeze. Whether you’re commuting from theme park and or desert to hotel, forget the hassle of waiting for a taxi or bus – Careem lets you book your ride at a tap. Careem also provides up-front cost estimates right inside the app. To get a fare estimate, download the app and input your desired destination.
If you’re thinking of scheduling your transfer from the airport to hotel and vice-versa, this is the app to use to get to places on time. At the end of your ride, you can chose to rate the driver.
#4: Keep your eyes peeled on itineraries by others
What better way to plan a visit than to check out itineraries done by others! Here’s an itinerary for you to check out some of Dubai’s must-visit places that are also Instagram-worthy…
Experience 19th Century Emirati life when you visit the historic area of Bur Dubai. Home to some of the city’s oldest attractions, the town is a must-visit for an old taste of Dubai.
Spend an entire morning at the Dubai Museum looking at intricately crafted colourful dioramas and enlightening historic exhibits.
Meander the winding streets of the Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood to discover a plethora of cultural activities, museums, art galleries and traditional food.
Visit the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU) and get a better understanding of the culture and customs of the UAE.
Tour the latest urban development, Al Seef, by foot and marvel at the charming walkways and picturesque marinas.
A celebration of youth, artistic culture and creative influences, Alserkal Avenue is the place to be if you wish to be at the heart of the city’s urban culture. The precinct is the first to exist in the United Arab Emirates and comes under the guidance of Pritzker Architecture Prize Laureate Winner, Rem Koolhaas.
Teeming with art galleries, quirky cafes and studios, enjoy an afternoon with your significant other in this precinct that brings to life the hip side of Dubai. Of particular interest is the Salsali Private Museum, Dubai’s first private contemporary arts museum – and a hallmark of a society that prizes globalism, diversity and technology.
Located in the heart of Al Habtoor City, La Perle brings to life a breath-taking fusion of artistic performance, creative imagery and ground-breaking technology. Directed by one of the world’s renowned artistic directors, Franco Dragone, the 90-minute live performance features 65 world-class artists from 23 different countries, each bringing their own unique set of skills to the show; from dance and acrobatics, to aquatic and aerial stunts.
Experience what life in Dubai was like before its meteoric rise from sand to skyscraper city during an overnight stay at a desert camp. Dune bash in a 4X4. Embark on a desert safari experience and enjoy wildlife watching.
Watch the sun go down at a traditional Bedouin style camp where a delicious dinner awaits against a stunning backdrop of gold sand dunes.
Pull up an Arabian carpet and sit and gaze into the starry night sky as you learn all about the different ways of surviving in the desert.
Just a short drive from Downtown Dubai, the Dubai Safari Park spans over 119 hectares of land. The park is divided into three sections: Asian Village, African Village and Open Safari Village. Each of the dedicated sections recreate the different habitats suitable for its varied and unique wildlife, including 2,500 animals from over 250 different species from around the world. Of particular interest are the Arabian oryx, Gordon’s wildcat and gazelle – wildlife species you won’t find anywhere else!
A medley of colours, the Dubai Garden Glow is the world’s largest – and most unique – themed garden. Featuring over hundreds of glow-in-the-dark displays created by artists from around the world, Dubai Garden Glow welcomes visitors of all ages. Most of the garden’s structures are fashioned from recycled materials; a commendable effort to encourage conservation.
Located in the Hajar Mountain Range, just 130 kilometres south-east of Downtown Dubai, Hatta Heritage Village promises warm Bedouin hospitality and plenty of opportunities for couples, families and adrenaline-junkies to enjoy diverse leisure experiences. Revel in the splendour of the town’s serene and breath-taking landscape and immerse in a bounty of exciting activities.
The beautiful attraction offers a myriad of activities for travellers seeking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. With attractive highlights like an adventure centre, interactive tourist hub, cosy mountain lodges and airstream trailer hotels, there’s something for everyone! Spend an entire day at this culturally unique attraction.
Check out Hatta Damani Lodges and Hatta Sedr Trailers for a glamping experience. Both are nestled between the picturesque Hatta mountains, both properties offer incredible ecotourism experiences that appeal to nature-lovers in search of a memorable vacation.
Hatta Damani Lodges consists of three types of cabins, each offering an exclusive idyllic mountain lodge experience set among Hatta’s rich and diverse ecosystem that spans across extensive mountain and biking trails. The lodges are in close proximity to Hatta Wadi Hub, helping guests wind down from the day-long adrenaline rush by relaxing in front of the bonfire or enjoying a scrumptious barbeque meal at any of the cosy purpose-built huts.
Featuring cosy trailers each with its own terrace garden, Hatta Sedr Trailers lets visitors bask under the Arabian night sky. Guests are free to access the common area that’s equipped with a fire pit and barbeque facilities, and enjoy an unblocked view of the charming Hatta Dam banks.
Overnight stays are also available at Hatta Campsite, a dedicated site for camping where tents can be set up for an indoor-meets-outdoor experience. Alternatively, visitors can choose to hop over to Hatta Caravan Park and enjoy the beauty of the great Arabian outdoors.
A theme and waterpark paradise, you can spend an entire day at the Dubai Parks and Resorts. The first integrated resort in the region, Dubai Parks and Resorts offers visitors endless hours of exhilarating fun. Featuring over 100 incredible indoor and outdoor rides and attractions across three theme parks, MOTIONGATETM Dubai, Bollywood ParksTM Dubai, Legoland® Dubai and Leogland® Waterpark, the leisure destination promises visitors an adrenaline-pumping experience.
See and experience the wonders of the world at this multicultural festival park. With over 45 country pavilions waiting to enthral visitors, Global Village is the place to be for travellers looking forward to savouring an international experience. Take your time in exploring the park, shop for clothes and fabrics, and taste cuisines from all corners of the world.
A theme park for all ages, Aquaventure Waterpark, the largest of several waterparks in Dubai is home to record-breaking rides and attractions. With rides like the 27.5-meter Leap of Faith plunge and the region’s longest zipline, the Aquaventure Waterpark promises visitors an adrenaline-pumping experience. Visitors can also swim with sharks, hand-feed Cownose stingrays, play with dolphins, splash around in the lazy river or relax at the spa.
Enjoy beachside bliss at La Mer, the city’s latest beachfront district that’s also an Instagram-worthy photo spot. Offering plenty of laidback fun under the sun, this waterfront destination is a great place to enjoy affordable Arabian, Asian and Western cuisines at affordable prices.
You can even revel in the glorious rays of the Arabian winter sun and enjoy a host of cool activities. Check out the pearlescent white sand beach, which stretches 2.5 kilometres, and indulge in some retail therapy at the many shops and cafes.
If you are tired of eating out and your hotel or apartment allowed you to cook, why not consider doing your grocery shopping at Union Co-operative Society Hypermarket (Union Coop)?
Union Coop has been established since 36 years ago and it has been one of the longest standing and most charitable supermarket in UAE. Union Coop’s 13 outlets offer a wide range of products from electronics to hardware and house hold appliances other than food. Union Coop plays an active role in moderating the prices through promotional campaigns and offering real-value offers which focus on helping the community. Their groceries are fresh and definitely more affordable than most other supermarket in Dubai.
This article is contributed by Dubai Tourism.