Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Diners Club are generally accepted in hotels and larger stores but some retailers offer better bargains for cash.
The official currency is the UAE dirham (Dh). One dirham is divided into 100 fils. Notes come in denominations of five, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000. Coins are Dh 1, 50 fils, 25 fils, 10 fils and 5 fils. The government has issued new coins that are smaller than the old ones. Both types remain legal tender. The UAE dirham is fully convertible and pegged to the US dollar at a current exchange rate of US$ = Dh 3.67
Global links, including GSM mobile telephones, pagers and Internet connections are world-class and inexpensive. Local and foreign television, radio, newspapers, magazines and books are readily available.
Pre-paid GSM mobile telephone SIM cards are available at the airport, and at Etisalat offices and business centres throughout the country.
The standard of health care is high throughout the UAE. However, it is expensive, so it's important to get decent travel insurance. The Emirate is clear of all epidemic diseases and is largely mosquito free. No specific vaccinations are required to enter the country however it would be wise to check beforehand if you are travelling from a health-risk area.
Film is readily available, as are processing facilities and colour prints can be produced in 15 to 30 minutes. We recommend you ask permission before photographing people in general and Muslim women in particular. Airports, docks, telecommunication equipment, government buildings, military and industrial installations should not be photographed.
Safety & Lifestyle
The UAE's low crime rate makes it one of the safest places in the world to visit – even for women travelling alone. It is however advisable to take the normal precautions to safeguard yourself and your valuables. Dubai is the most liberal place in the UAE and people here are used to Western dress and ways. However, modest dress is recommended in public places. Beachwear is acceptable at beach clubs and hotel pools.
Alcohol is freely available in restaurants, nightclubs and bars in hotels or in member-only places such as country clubs and sports clubhouses (which often admit paying guests). Restaurants outside hotels do not have a licence to serve alcoholic beverages.