Can women drive in Dubai ?

women drive in Dubai

If you’re a woman considering taking a trip to Dubai, you may be wondering if women can legally drive in the city. The answer is yes – women can drive in Dubai.

This is great news for female travelers and expats looking to explore the country. In recent years, there have been numerous initiatives to increase female participation in the workforce, and having the right to drive is an important step forward in achieving gender equality.

In this article, we’ll discuss why this is such an important development and provide some practical tips on how you can take advantage of it if you decide to visit or live in Dubai. We’ll cover topics such as laws that make driving possible for women, car rental options, and other useful information for female drivers in Dubai.

Understanding the Driving Law in Dubai

The good news is that yes, women can drive in Dubai! In 2018, the country officially loosened restrictions on women driving. This historic change was part of a larger effort to improve the general support of women in the modern Middle East.

It’s important to note that, while you will have no trouble renting a car or obtaining a driver’s license, you should be aware of one potential caveat: In Dubai, there are still some roads that are off-limits for females. This means that if you want to get from point A to point B by driving, it is important to plan your route carefully.

Your best bet for avoiding any potential issues is to pay special attention when selecting your vehicle of choice and drive only in areas where women are allowed. That said, with such a momentous shift in policy and law taking place, it’s likely that these restrictions will continue to be loosened over time. You can rest assured knowing that you can safely drive in many parts of Dubai!

Where Are Women Allowed to Drive?

Can women drive in Dubai?

In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Dubai is one of the most liberal cities in the region when it comes to female drivers. Women can obtain a driving license at the Roads and Transport Authority and are legally allowed to drive in the emirate. There are even female-only drivers, typically provided by taxi companies, that are available to hire.

It’s important to note, however, that while women may drive freely in Dubai, there are still restrictions when it comes to other parts of the UAE. For example, women are not allowed to drive outside of Dubai without a male companion or driver. In addition, when renting a car, some rental companies may require for a woman to have a letter from their sponsor authorizing them to drive.

The Necessary Documents and Qualifications

If you’re planning to drive in Dubai as a woman, you’ll need to ensure that you have the necessary documents and qualifications. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) requires all drivers – regardless of gender – to prove their competence before being allowed on the roads.

To obtain a license, you will need to provide:

  • A valid Emirates ID card
  • A valid passport
  • A non-objection certificate from your employer
  • Proof of address

You will also need to pass a theoretical test which consists of multiple-choice questions about road safety and traffic laws in the UAE, as well as practical driving tests tailored to the type of vehicle you intend to drive. Once these tests have been passed, you can apply for your license at any one of the Dubai Traffic Police’s licensing centers. The process is swift and straightforward so it shouldn’t take too long before you receive your license in the mail.

Etiquette Tips for Female Drivers in Dubai

The local culture in Dubai can be quite conservative, and female drivers are expected to observe certain rules of etiquette when behind the wheel. These include:

Respect Local Dress Code

It is important for female drivers to respect the local dress code and cover up as much as possible when driving. Modest clothing such as long sleeves, long skirts and headscarves are acceptable, and it is best to avoid revealing clothes while driving.

Limited Overtaking

In Dubai, it is considered impolite for female drivers to overtake another vehicle unnecessarily. This means that it is best to avoid tailgating or aggressive driving when driving in the city.

Avoid Eye Contact

Female drivers should be aware that eye contact should be avoided when interacting with other drivers on the road. As such, it is important not to make eye contact with male drivers who may be seen as disrespectful in some circumstances.

By following these etiquette tips, female drivers in Dubai can ensure they have a pleasant experience on the roads and respect local customs at the same time.

Avoid Getting Fined on the Roads

If you’re driving in Dubai, it’s important to know the rules of the road – or risk a hefty fine. While most road rules in Dubai apply to everyone, there are certain things that women should be particularly aware of.

Driving Licenses

In the UAE, only men over the age of 21 are eligible for a full driving license. However, female visitors to Dubai will still be able to drive if they have a valid international driving license from their country of origin.

Road Etiquette

Women are expected to be courteous on the roads and avoid aggressive behavior such as tailgating and using abusive language. It is also important to remember that some roads in Dubai have specific restrictions for women – such as speed limits and no-entry areas.


Women should ensure they have all relevant documentation with them at all times when driving in Dubai. This includes a valid driver’s license, vehicle registration card and insurance details. Additionally, it is important not to drink alcohol whilst driving – this could result in a large fine or even jail time if caught.

Traffic Safety Tips for Women Drivers

Heading out on the roads in Dubai can be intimidating for women drivers, especially if you are new to the area or coming to visit. To make your journey safer, here are a few tips to keep in mind when driving in Dubai:

Be Visible

When driving in Dubai, it is important to be visible at all times. Make sure to drive with your headlights on during the day and night, and wear bright clothing so that other drivers can easily spot you. Additionally, you should always be aware of your surroundings and drive defensively.

Keep Your Documents Ready

In Dubai, it is essential that all drivers carry valid driver’s licenses with them while they are on the roads. You should also make sure you have other documents required for driving such as a car registration and insurance papers. Having these documents handy will ensure a smoother ride and help avoid any unnecessary hassles along the way.

Know Your Way Around Town

Having a basic knowledge of Dubai’s streets and roads is essential for any driver, but especially so for women drivers who may not be as familiar with the area. Get an updated map of the city or invest in a GPS system to help navigate your way around town. This will also come in handy if there are any unexpected detours or closures along your route.


In conclusion, it is now possible for women to legally drive in Dubai. The ruling is a historic moment that marks a new era of gender equality in the UAE. With the right paperwork, insurance, and license, women can now enjoy the same privileges that men have had in the past. Furthermore, car rental companies and driving schools in the UAE have opened their doors to women and provide services that they need to obtain a driver’s license. All in all, the progressive ruling is a significant step forward for the women of Dubai.

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