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Compare travel insurance for Dubai

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 Dubai? 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 Dubai? Let’s take a look.

Written by
Rebecca Goodman
Insurance expert
Last Updated
9 MAY 2023
7 min read
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Do I need travel insurance for Dubai?

Travel insurance for Dubai is mandatory if you need a visa to enter the UAE. This is not a requirement for British passport holders, which means travel insurance is optional.

However, it’s highly recommended you take out travel insurance for your trip to Dubai. The right travel insurance policy could protect you against many of the risks you may face while travelling. For example, you won’t have access to free medical treatment in Dubai. This means, if you fall ill or suffer an injury, you’ll need to pay the expensive medical fees yourself, which can cost thousands of pounds.

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.

How much is travel insurance for Dubai?

You’ll need worldwide travel insurance for the Emirates region, which includes 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 will travel insurance to Dubai cover?

Travel insurance for the UAE, which includes travel cover for Dubai, will typically cover:

Medical costs

If you were to suffer a medical emergency, your medical expenses 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.

Lost, stolen or damaged luggage

This could cover costs up to a certain limit if your personal belongings 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.

What isn’t included in Dubai travel insurance?

Here are some examples of 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.

Customers with pre-existing medical conditions

If you have a serious health condition, your travel insurance is likely to be more expensive. Whatever happens, don’t lie to an insurance provider, because this could mean your claim is rejected. When you declare any medical conditions on our website, we’ll only show you quotes from insurance providers who will cover them, with no exclusions.

If your condition is more serious, MoneyHelper has a directory of insurance providers who may be able to provide quotes over the phone. You can call them on 0800 138 7777.

Dubai entry requirements

Your passport should be valid for at least six months from the date of entry into the UAE.

Do I need a visa for Dubai?

If you hold a British passport, you’ll receive a free visitor/tourist visa upon arrival into the UAE. This visa is valid for up to 40 days.

Dubai covid restrictions

At the time of writing, there are no coronavirus restrictions or testing requirements for entering the UAE.

You can find the latest FCDO travel advice and entry requirements for Dubai here.

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 sports 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

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.

Travel tips for Dubai

Here are some tips for travelling in Dubai:

  • 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 (AED) and cash machines are readily available.
  • Drinking alcohol — Tourists are only allowed to drink alcohol in licensed venues. Drinking in public is strictly forbidden.
  • Smoking — Smoking is permitted in designated areas. However, electronic e-cigarettes are illegal.
  • 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%)
  • Clothing — In public, it’s expected that people dress conservatively. This includes covering shoulders, upper arms and upper legs.
  • Public displays of affection — The United Arab Emirates is a conservative country and public displays of affection are prohibited. Behind closed doors, sex outside of marriage is illegal. If you’re travelling with an unmarried partner, you may be required to sleep in separate rooms.
  • LGBTQ+ travellers — Homosexual relationships are illegal in the UAE and same-sex marriages aren’t recognised. All sex outside of marriage is illegal. Public displays of homosexual affection could risk arrest and prosecution.

Compare Dubai travel insurance

Just give us a few details about your trip and we’ll do the rest. We’ll compare Dubai travel insurance quotes from a range of providers and show you great deals that meet your needs.

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