Dubai is a futuristic and exotic city, with friendly inhabitants, where hospitality is taken seriously. For a metropolis of its size, it is very safe and surprisingly cosmopolitan, with inhabitants of about 150 nationalities choosing to live and work there. However, it is a Muslim country and you must retain some information in order to avoid cultural clashes.
A Muslim country
the first thing to keep in mind is that the United Arab Emirates is not a democracy. Instead they are a confederation of religious monarchies ruled under the Islamic law. If you request legal assistance, please remember that the authorities of the country are not obliged to contact your consulate or provide representation.
Non-Muslims can consume alcohol in licensed establishments in Dubai. Most of these restaurants and nightclubs operate inside large hotel complexes where, in fact, the rules of behaviour are generally more relaxed. Nevertheless, it remains illegal to consume alcohol or be drunk in public. And when it comes to drive while drunken, tolerance is zero.
Modesty is the key word. This means that while in Dubai, you should keep your legs covered to the knees or avoid showing your shoulders, for example. And be aware that these rules do not apply only to women - even men should never be naked in public spaces. The exceptions are private beaches and swimming pools.
Demonstrations of affection
Walking hand in hand on the streets is tolerated between husband and wife, but kissing and hugging in public is considered offensive. And although in the overwhelming majority of times, in Dubai, the police are tolerant when it comes to tourists, it is obliged to act upon complaints, so it is best not to risk it.
During Ramadan, in Dubai, all the rules are observed more intensely. Remember that it is illegal to eat in public between sunrise and sunset, for example. However, most establishments continue to operate normally within hotel complexes and shopping centres. After all, the constitution of the emirate provides for religious freedom.
In Dubai, Islam is a way of life and visitors are expected to be sensitive to the traditions of the United Arab Emirates. Follow these tips, ask for advices at your hotel whenever you have questions and we guarantee that you will have a 100% positive experience in this amazing city!