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World Travel Guide > Guides > Middle East > Oman > Muscat

Muscat Weather

29°C

Local time Muscat

Currency

Travel to Muscat

Flying to Muscat

Oman Air operates direct flights to Muscat from the UK. Alternatively, there are plenty of indirect options involving one change, including flights with Emirates, Etihad Airways, Gulf Air, Qatar Airways and Turkish Airlines. There are no direct flights from the USA. Cheaper flights to Muscat are usually available during the summer months when temperatures are scorching hot.

Flight times

From London - 7 hours 35 minutes; New York - 15 hours (including stopover); Los Angeles - 19 hours (including stopover); Toronto - 16 hours (including stopover); Sydney - 17 hours 30 minutes (including stopover).

Travel by road

A modern infrastructure of roads links most cities in Oman with Muscat. Traffic drives on the right and the minimum driving age is 18. The speed limit on major highways is 120kph (74mph), reduced to 100kph (62mph) within city limits, and enforced by speed cameras. In built-up areas, speed limits are usually 60-80kph (37-50mph).

Road accidents are common but most drivers follow the rules. It is possible to drive to Muscat from the UAE, crossing desert landscape through one of three border posts. Extra insurance is generally needed to take a UAE hired car over the border and the car has to be returned to base.

An International Driving Permit is required though often a national driving licence is accepted.

Emergency breakdown services

The Royal Oman Police (tel: 9999) respond to emergency calls but many roads outside the capital area are infrequently used and waiting times are long. It is important to carry water and to stay with the car if stuck in remote areas.

Routes

Highway 1 travels along the coast from the United Arab Emirates into Muscat. Highway 17 continues southeast of the city near the coast, while Highway 15 heads inland.

Coaches

Public transport is provided by Oman National Transport Company (ONTC) (tel: +968 2412 1500; www.ontcoman.com). Buses connect Muscat with all parts of the country from the main station on Al-Jaame St in Ruwi. ONTC runs a daily service between Dubai and Ruwi bus station in Muscat.

Time to city

From Dubai - 5 hours.

Travel by Rail

Services

There are currently no rail services in Oman, but there are plans to construct a rail network connecting the country with the rest of the Gulf region. See www.omanrail.om for updates.