For a trip to the United Arab Emirates, credit cards are accepted in many cities and hotels in major cities. However, if you are planning a trip to more remote regions, then you should not do without enough cash.
Pay by credit card in the United Arab Emirates
For a trip to the United Arab Emirates, secure access to cash and considerations about using credit cards are a key part of travel planning. Credit cards are widely accepted as a form of cashless payment in major cities, especially hotels, rental car companies, upscale restaurants and some shops. Globally accepted card providers such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Diners Club are suitable for choosing the right credit card for the United Arab Emirates, whereby Visa and MasterCard are widely accepted in the country.
In the United Arab Emirates, however, hypermodern and old worlds, as rarely in other countries of the world, meet directly. You will find impressive top-class hotels with up to seven stars, shiny limousines and impressive shopping malls, as well as the traditional Arab markets, also known as souks. For example, no credit cards are accepted in the souks, because here, as was the case centuries ago, people haggled and traded vigorously and of course only paid in cash. For this reason, and also when traveling to more rural regions of the country, it is particularly important to have access to sufficient cash. All credit or Maestro cards bearing the Cirrus or Maestro symbol are accepted at all ATMs worldwide for cash withdrawals. ATMs are available nationwide, but most banks charge cash withdrawals fees. The cost of this is set by the bank in the United Arab Emirates.
Allow charges for using the credit card
Your bank will charge you a percentage fee for foreign currency use for using a credit card in the United Arab Emirates for cashless payment. Typically the fee is between 1 and 1.75%. Sometimes the hotel or the shop charges an additional card payment fee. In such cases, paying with cash is cheaper. You can withdraw cash from ATMs nationwide in the United Arab Emirates. You can use the credit card or Maestro card for this and receive the amounts directly in the local currency, dirham. Cash machines are usually located on larger streets, at banks and in shopping centers.
Alternative means of payment for the United Arab Emirates
For the trip and the stay in the United Arab Emirates, cash can already be exchanged in the local currency in Europe. The cheaper exchange rates can be found directly in the country, which is why taking cash in USD is sufficient. It is not necessary to bring US dollars into the country, as changing USD in dirhams is not a problem. Currency exchange offices usually offer more favorable conditions than banks. You can also easily change your euro notes into the national currency of the United Arab Emirates directly at the airport or in hotels.
Paying with an EC card is usually more expensive in the United Arab Emirates than with a credit card, which is why a mix of cash and credit card is the cheapest for paying in the country. Travelers checks can also be easily exchanged in the United Arab Emirates. However, since the course for travelers checks is not particularly good, cash withdrawals at ATMs and cashless payments with a credit card are recommended as the best payment option.