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Shopping in Dubai

Shopping is undoubtedly one of the Dubai’s greatest draw cards, with the city often regarded as the ‘Shopping Capital of the Middle East'.

Key areas

The souks, or traditional markets, are one of Dubai's greatest attractions. They are located on both sides of the Dubai Creek, with the most impressive on the Deira side.

Markets

Dubai’s souks offer an atmospheric shopping experience with sights, sounds and aromas that hint of yesteryear. The Spice Souk, Al-Sabkha Road, is more of a tourist attraction, while the buzzing Gold Souk, Sikkat al-Khali Street, offers some great deals on gold necklaces, rings, bangles, earrings and brooches, with gold prices among the lowest in the world. The gold souks are strictly regulated, so there is little chance of customers being ripped off in terms of quality, although prices do vary greatly and bargaining is essential.

The Electronics Souk, near Beniyas Square, might sound a slightly incongruous idea but this is Dubai, which means that, with shopping, anything goes.

Shopping centres

If you love shopping, make it your mission to visit the "Big Five" which are BurJuman, Deira City Centre, Dubai Mall, Ibn Buttuta and Mall of the Emirates.

Opening hours

Dubai’s shops are rarely closed although Friday morning is the one exception, when most stores are shut as it’s the holy day. Larger malls are open 1000-2200 and often even later during festival periods. Dubai’s souks are open Saturday-Thursday 0700-1200 and 1700-1900,  and Friday from1700-1900.

Souvenirs

Spices, gold, designer wear and electronics goods are among the popular souvenirs purchased in Dubai.

Tax information

There is no sales tax in Dubai and the airport is renowned for having one of the finest duty-free opportunities in the world.
This is open to both arriving and departing passengers.

Featured Hotels

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Desert Palm Dubai

Set away from the hustle and bustle of Dubai proper, the Desert Palm Dubai is a peaceful spot that conspicuously lacks the bling that characterises many of the city’s ultra-luxe hotels. Gorgeous gardens and a full-size polo field surround it, while the onsite spa is particularly good.

InterContinental Dubai Festival City

Set in one of Dubai’s many shopping, culinary and entertainment destinations, InterContinental Dubai Festival City offers a luxury yet affordable experience. It is also conveniently located by a massive Event Centre, with exclusive direct access to Dubai Festival City Mall.

Jumeirah Emirates Towers

These two ultra-modern skyscrapers are among the tallest buildings in the Middle East. Part office, part hotel, each state-of-the-art room is geared towards business guests and have all the essentials, including super-speedy Wi-Fi. Although most of the rooms are ultra-modern, the deluxe rooms come with their own opulent chaises longue.

Grand Hyatt

Few business hotels come with a lobby floor decorated with mosaic tiles made from real gold but then again this is Dubai. Away from the lobby things are a bit less bling and very comfortable – think huge cushions and beds with crisp white sheets. It also boasts good restaurants and an excellent spa.

Citymax

Citymax has targeted the budget market in a bold way, opening large properties in Al Barsha and in the heart of the central Bur Dubai district. Its Al Barsha hotel is conveniently close to Mall of the Emirates and boasts comfortable, clean rooms – all within striking distance of the beaches and nightlife of the Marina.

EasyHotel Dubai

Sunglasses at the ready – Dubai's EasyHotel is almost entirely decked out in the Easy brand's trademark bright orange and white. That said, the hotel is comfortable and super-cheap, and offers free Wi-Fi in all of its rooms. The main downside is the location – Jebel Ali is about 25km (16 miles) from Jumeirah.