If you plan on visiting and eventually driving around Dubai, your first priority will be to rent a car. But that is only part of your to-do list. The first thing tourists must do before acquiring a car on lease is to ensure that they have the necessary documents required for the rental process. What are the documents required for rent a car in Dubai? Let’s find out.
Rent a Car Dubai Documents
The documents required to rent a car in the United Arab Emirates differ for residents and tourists. For example, rental car companies in Dubai will usually require residents to produce copies of the passport, residential visa, valid UAE driving license and Emirates ID.
Tourists on the other hand, are required to submit the following documents for rent a car in Dubai:
- Original passport
- Original visit visa
- International driving permit
- Original driving license from their home country
Car rental UAE license considerations
Whether you are visiting Dubai for business or leisure, you need a valid UAE driving license or international driving license if you intend to drive yourself around.
You will still need to obtain a valid International Driving License even if you do have a valid driver’s license from your home country. Both documents must be with you when you drive rented cars.
On the other hand, tourists hailing from countries whose driving license are valid in the United Arab Emirates don’t need to acquire additional licenses.
Valid International Driving Licenses in the UAE
One of the most important documents required to rent a car in Dubai is the license. Expats renting a car in Dubai are allowed to drive on the city’s roads with driving licenses issued in their home countries. These include Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Brazil, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Britain, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Malta, Malaysia, Netherland, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the USA.
Tourists from South Korea, Slovakia, Japan and Quebec (pre-dominantly French-speaking province in East Canada) are required to produce copies of their original and translated licenses.
In addition to the mentioned documents, there are certain considerations that tourists must note before they rent a car in the emirate. These are as follows:
What are the overhead costs?
Charges for renting vehicles in Dubai are based on the duration of chosen rental terms. For example, most rental companies in the city charge for the full rental amount for monthly, weekly and yearly deals with the yearly variety often categorized as long term car rentals in Dubai.
Rental car companies also block the deposit amount – usually AED 1,500 – on credit cards to make up for possible traffic fines or in case their vehicles are damaged by customers. If the customer doesn’t incur any fines or damages the vehicle during the rental term, the deposit amount is released within a few days.
Another consideration with those looking at documents required to rent a car in Dubai is usually related to car insurance. Most car rental companies in Dubai offer standard insurance as part of the rental rates per car —but not all. To keep it safe, always ask the staff at the car hire company if the charges are inclusive of insurance. Most international car rental companies don’t offer full coverage on car insurance. Only a few do, either for an extra charge or for free. Here is a good tip — if your chosen service is allowing you to rent a vehicle for below its market price, the offer probably doesn’t include insurance coverage.
It’s also advisable to acquire additional insurance coverage. For example, if your chosen car rental company only offers a standard insurance package, its best to acquire Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) insurance. It will provide coverage in case you get into an accident and your rental vehicle is damaged. The same applies to comprehensive insurance.
In case of a collision, it’s always advisable to get a police report, especially if the accident in question is not your fault. Indicated through a white or blue slip, the report is useful in avoiding any liabilities.
Who pays Salik charges?
The absence of toll booths in Dubai ensures that road travel is continuous and hassle-free. Toll collection in Dubai is instead done via Salik toll points, an electronic toll collection system which deducts AED 4 from your prepaid toll account. In case of rented vehicles, Salik charges are deducted by the rental service through the RTA Salik system.
That’s all tourists need to be aware of regarding documents required for rent a car in Dubai. If you don’t have a driver’s license, check out our guide for acquiring a Dubai driving license. To improve your chances, join any of our top-rated Dubai driving schools. For a better understanding of the toll system in the emirate, take a look at how the Salik system works in Dubai.