getting around

Abu Dhabi is the largest of the seven Emirates that comprise of United Arab Emirates. Dubai and Sharjah are the other two most famous Emirates in terms of tourism travel and migration. The UAE has the fourth largest GDP per capita in the world.

Transportation to Abu Dhabi and Dubai could be by ships, airplanes or surface transportation from neighboring countries. Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah have international airports as well as harbors. Several international flights have regular services to these airports. Data show that nearly 90% of the population of the UAE is migrant workers, particularly those from Asia. Hence, several cities in India and Pakistan, as well as the capitals of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal are connected by flights to Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah. Flights are also operated regularly from other parts of the world.

Abu Dhabi changed the operations of its national airline, Gulf Air, in September 2003 to concentrate on Etihad Airways, the national airlines of the UAE, operating flights in that name. Dubai established in 1985, its own airline called Emirates. Both Etihad Airways and Emirates have scheduled flights to several places around the globe.

Transportation within Abu Dhabi is mainly by rental cars or taxis or municipality buses. Transportation within the city by buses is quite cheap. Rental car charges are also moderate but transportation by taxi could be quite costly. The oil-rich Abu Dhabi, Dubai and other Emirates are mostly deserts. Hence, transportation from one city to another has to be either by flights or by rental cars. However, transportation to the interior oil installations had to be undertaken only by rental cars. Transportation by rail is being planned and construction work has started about 2 years ago.

Camel racing and football are the two main sports in the Emirates. The UAE football team qualified for the World Cup in 1990, which gave a big boost to football in that country. Other emerging sports are golf and Formula 1 racing. Hence, tourism to the Emirates, particularly to Abu Dhabi is on the increase. As such, flights and surface transportation are gaining importance during the past few years in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Even several Asian airlines operate regular flights to these places from several cities. Since the UAE is considered to be one of the most moderate of the Arab states, travel to the UAE has become frequent. Thus, there is bound to be a significant increase in flights and surface transportation facilities in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. In fact, Emirates of Dubai is one of the 14 fastest growing airlines in the world, with notable improvement in the number and quality of its flights.

All over the world, several travel agencies offer cheap flights to Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Even the major airlines offer discounted flights to both these places. Further, transportation by low fare rental cars is also available inside the UAE. Travel to Abu Dhabi and Dubai, as well as transportation inside the UAE is a pleasant experience, if one can get adjusted to the extreme hot and cold climates that exist there.