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How to get a driver's license in Dubai

How to get a driver's license in Dubai

Many expats in Dubai have never touched the steering wheel. Some may have driven ages ago. If you have a driver's license in your home country, then you might want to check on my next article about driving in Dubai and getting your license transferred.

I am writing to those expats who has no driver's license before. If you are looking into getting your license in Dubai, you need to consider your budget. I have never kept a summary of the expenses I had when I was going through it. Let's just say a AED10,000++ (USD2,730) is enough over the course of your driving lessons from the lecture down to the final test. How long will it take? It depends really but I opted for the weekend classes as I am working full time. Evening classes are available also.

Next thing you need to keep in mind is the minimum age requirement in Dubai. If you are between 18-21 years of age, you can apply for a probationary license. Once you obtain it, you need to renew it every year until the said age.

Choose from a list of driving institutions in Dubai in order to get your training. There are 5 authorised driving schools in Dubai which I have listed below with the contact details.

Al Ahli Driving School (+9714 341 1500), Belhasa Driving School (+9714 324 3535), Dubai Driving Center (+9714 345 5855), Emirates Driving Institute: (9714 263 1100), Galadari Driving School (+9714 267 6166)

Now you have to prepare the documents required to open a file in one of the authorised driving schools in Dubai.

1. Passport (original+copy)
2. Residence visa
3. No Objection Certificate from your employer
4. Passport photos - 8 copies

Open a file at an authorised driving school. They will be happy to assist you. First up is attending the lecture classes. That's a total of 4 hours. Then you have to pay again to begin your road classes. After a few classes, you can take the parking test which is the first of the four tests required. You just park the car at the garage compound. You will be tested both parallel and 90 degrees parking. Once passed, continue with few classes and take your theory test. It consists of 35 questions about situations on the road or some signs and symbols. I got 3 mistakes and that put me through to the next phase which is the assessment test. You need to take a few more classes and once you are ready. The instructor will let you know if you pass or not.

The final test you need to take is the road test. Settle your account first and then you will be placed with 2 other students with the officer. I failed my first two road tests but just a piece of advice, it's common in Dubai! There are only few lucky students who pass the road test on their first attempt. So never give up. Think of the benefits and effort you have done. Looking back, it has already cost you some bucks but moving forward, this license will give you added qualification in your career and so on. The benefits are endless.

I have passed my final road test on Boxing Day and it was a big relief. After 3 years of taking the classes and failing a few times. All I can think about is the next challenge ahead of me, the Dubai road. Do not be afraid to learn from the instructors, some say they are not doing their job. I tell you, there are a lot of driving habits in Dubai as we are living in a multi-cultural environment. The good thing is, you will learn from scratch and will be familiar with the roads and signs. Dubai possesses one of the best road infrastructures ever. Huge traffic is very common anywhere so don't complain. Keep in mind that Dubai has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to drinking and driving.

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