Compare Dubai travel insurance

When it comes to man-made wonders, Dubai is one of the world’s most jaw-dropping destinations. There aren’t many places that offer a mall with over a thousand shops or a ski resort in a desert. So how do you choose travel insurance for such a unique holiday location? Let’s take a look.

When it comes to man-made wonders, Dubai is one of the world’s most jaw-dropping destinations. There aren’t many places that offer a mall with over a thousand shops or a ski resort in a desert. So how do you choose travel insurance for such a unique holiday location? Let’s take a look.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: please check the latest government travel advice that sets out what you need to do, if anything, before you travel abroad and before you return home. You should also check the latest travel advice and entry requirements for each country you visit or transit through. Travel rules can change at short notice, so check the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) for the latest information.

Rebecca Goodman
Insurance expert
7
minute read
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Posted 28 JANUARY 2020 Last Updated 11 MAY 2022

Do I need travel insurance for Dubai?

Since the outbreak of coronavirus, the UAE government has made it mandatory that visitors to Dubai have travel insurance that includes Covid-19 cover. You won’t have access to free medical treatment in Dubai so if you fall ill, you need to have a valid travel insurance policy or the means to pay a medical bill yourself.

Most travel insurance providers can cover you if you get Covid before or during a trip but this can vary so always check well in advance to make sure you know what you are and aren’t covered for.

Dubai is generally a very safe city, but as with all tourist destinations there is some pickpocketing. Add to that the risk of lost or damaged luggage and it’s a good idea to have travel insurance that covers your personal possessions. Plus, there are all the usual chances of cancellations and delays, which are far less upsetting when you have travel insurance to give you peace of mind.

Customers with more serious pre-existing medical conditions

If you have a serious health condition, the price you pay for travel insurance is likely to be more expensive. However, there are still many providers out there and you should be able to find affordable cover. Whatever happens, don’t be tempted to lie to an insurance provider, because if you do and then need to make a claim, it could be rejected.

When you declare medical conditions on our website, we’ll only show quotes from insurance providers who will cover all declared medical conditions, with no exclusions. 

MoneyHelper has launched a directory of insurance providers who may be able to provide quotes over the phone if you have more serious medical conditions. Find more information at MoneyHelper or by calling them on 0800 138 7777.

How much is travel insurance for Dubai?

You’ll need worldwide travel insurance to visit Dubai. A worldwide policy takes into account the higher medical costs you may encounter outside of Europe, so it’s typically more expensive than a standard travel insurance policy. 

The cost of your travel insurance to Dubai will depend on the level of cover you need and the type of activities you’re planning to do. Any pre-existing medical conditions could also affect the cost of your premium.

Travel insurance - as with any type of insurance - is a game of risk. Providers calculate the risk of you having a loss, accident or illness and making a claim, which could result in them paying out a sum of money. The more at risk you are of claiming, the more expensive a policy will be. But there are loads of policies on offer, so you should be able to find affordable cover without paying over the odds just because you’re higher risk.

What are the Covid restrictions for travelling to Dubai?

The UAE’s entry restrictions and requirements can change with very little warning, so it’s vital to check the rules with the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) and your airline before you go. 

The FCDO also advises that it’s more important than ever to get travel insurance that provides sufficient cover during the pandemic. Check the FCDO website for up-to-date information on travelling to Dubai. 

You’ll also need to check the rules in the UK - which can also change quickly - to make sure you know exactly what you need to do, if anything, when you return home.

What will Dubai travel insurance cover?

A Dubai travel insurance policy will typically cover:

  • Medical costs – if you were to fall ill or be injured, your medical treatment should be covered. A policy with £2 million of medical cover should also include repatriation back to the UK if needed. Healthcare in Dubai is of a high standard, but you could be refused treatment if you don’t have a valid policy or enough cash of your own to cover medical costs. Considering that a broken leg and repatriation from Dubai to the UK could cost as much as £25,000, it’s vital to have a decent policy to protect you.  
  • Lost, stolen or damaged luggage – could cover costs up to a certain limit if your personal items and luggage are lost or stolen. Policies typically have a single item limit – the maximum an insurance provider will pay out for one single item – so if you’re taking an expensive smartphone or laptop, you might want to add separate gadget insurance to your travel cover. 
  • Missed flights and delays – it’s important to check your policy carefully, as cover for missed connections might not be automatically included. 
  • Cancellation costs - most policies cover cancellation and curtailment as standard, but check the terms and conditions for any exclusions, as these can vary among providers. 
  • Covid-19 – to protect you for cancellation, medical expenses, repatriation and extended stays as a result of covid. Get a travel insurance quote with us and you can compare the levels of covid cover available. Just look for the ‘more details’ option on the quote results page.

Did you know?

Tourists are only allowed to drink alcohol in licensed venues – drinking in public is strictly forbidden. And while smoking is permitted in designated areas, electronic e-cigarettes are illegal. 

What isn’t included in Dubai travel insurance?

As with any travel insurance policy, not every eventuality will be covered, so check what’s excluded so you know what your policy may not cover: 

  • Pre-existing medical conditions – it may be difficult to find travel insurance for certain medical conditions, especially if you might need specialist care while you’re away. Remember, you need to be honest and tell your insurance provider about any medical conditions, or it could invalidate your policy. You might need to pay extra or look for specialist travel cover.
  • Drugs and alcohol – you won’t be covered for medical treatment if you’re injured or involved in an accident while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Extreme sports – you might need to take out extra insurance if you’re planning on doing any extreme sports in Dubai.  Standard policies won’t usually cover things like skydiving, swimming with dolphins, horse riding or water sports. And if you plan on playing golf while in Dubai, you may also want to take out specialist golf insurance as your policy might not include this. 
  • Terrorism, natural disasters and civil unrest – some providers may offer emergency medical costs if you’re caught up in a terror attack, but not all do. Check your policy carefully and talk to your provider so you know exactly what events are excluded. 

What should I think about when I compare Dubai travel insurance?

  • Does your travel insurance cover Dubai? If you’re relying on insurance that you get free with your bank account, the answer may well be no – those policies often only apply to Europe and aren’t as comprehensive as separate travel insurance. For Dubai, you need worldwide travel insurance.  

  • Do you have enough cover for your belongings?  Dubai is the shopping capital of the Middle East, so you may well come home with some pricey new possessions. Make sure to factor that in when you choose the level of baggage cover in your insurance policy.

  • Are all your activities covered? Skydiving, dune bashing, sandboarding, quad biking… the list of extreme sports available in Dubai goes on and on. Many of them won’t be insured under a standard policy, so plan your adventures in advance and make sure you have the cover you need before you travel. Find out more about extreme sports travel insurance.

  • How much is the trip worth? If you had to cancel, how much money would you lose? Make sure you factor everything in including flights, hotels, car hire and pre-booked activities. You should have at least that much cancellation cover included in your policy in case you need to claim. Find out more about holiday cancellation cover.  

  • Personal liability - While Dubai is a thriving, modern city, there are certain things which, though perfectly legal in the UK, may not be acceptable there – for example, consumption of alcohol and certain clothing. It’s advisable to read up on what you can and can’t do before you go. You may want to consider a policy that includes personal liability and legal cover, just in case you fall foul of UAE law. 

  • Are you going for business? Business travellers to Dubai might want a travel insurance policy that’s geared to their needs. Don’t worry, we can help you find this too. Find out more about business travel insurance.  

The last thing you want when you go on holiday is to be bogged down by paperwork and small print, but by planning in advance and preparing for your trip, you can avoid losing out financially.

Do I need a visa for Dubai?

Yes, but it’s easy to get. If you’re a British citizen, you can get a 30-day visa on arrival in the UAE. While you’re there, you can extend the visa for a fee at the immigration office. Also note that your passport will need to be valid for more than six months after your date of entry.

Any other tips for travelling to Dubai?

A stunning destination of sunshine and blue seas, Dubai welcomes around 1.5 million visitors from the UK every year. It’s easy to see why people love travelling to Dubai. To make the most of your trip, it’s worth planning what you’ll do when you get there and learning a little about local life. Here’s a few things it’s nice to know before you join that number:

  • Culture: Dubai is a welcoming place, but you might want to brush up on the etiquette and laws in advance. For example, public displays of affection aren’t acceptable in Dubai and could even get you into legal trouble. See what the government of Dubai website has to say about Dubai’s etiquette and culture  
  • Currency: The official currency is the UAE dirham (Dh) and cash machines are readily available.
  • Tipping: You don’t have to tip, but it is common and very welcome. Only food and drink outlets inside hotels can add service charges to your bill (usually 10% to 15%)
  • Vaccines: You should see your doctor at least one month before travelling just to double-check whether you need any vaccinations. In most cases you shouldn’t need anything specific to travel to Dubai or the UAE in general
  • Time difference and flights: Dubai is four hours ahead of standard British time (GMT) and the average flight time to Dubai from London is six hours and 45 minutes

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