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The United Arab Emirates

8 days

Dubai + Rub’ al Khali Desert + Abu Dhabi

City Discoveries + Desert Adventures on our UAE Tour

  • Meet an engaging Emirati citizen and gain a unique insider’s perspective as you get to know the culture and heritage of his native Dubai.
  • Embark on a private cruise to behold the iconic skyline of Dubai and Palm Jumeirah, a remarkable man-made archipelago in the Arabian Gulf.
  • Venture into the fabled Empty Quarter Desert, the largest uninterrupted expanse of desert dunes in the world.
  • At the Falcon Hospital in Abu Dhabi, watch as specialized veterinarians and technicians care for up to 200 of these amazing birds of prey.
  • Trace the history of Abu Dhabi from tribal settlement to 21st-century metropolis at Qasr al-Hosn, the symbolic birthplace of the Emirate.
  • Be among the first to tour the new Louvre Abu Dhabi, set a striking landmark designed by the renowned French architect Jean Nouvel.
  • Sit down to High Tea 1,000 feet in the air at the Observation Deck of Jumeirah Etihad Towers.
  • With 7 nights in luxury hotels; 9 meals; comprehensive sightseeing with your choice of included activities in the famed Empty Quarter Desert; all transfers + entrance fees; and all gratuities except your Private Guide

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Our VIP Arrival Service in Dubai

Taj Dubai - Dubai, United Arab Emirates

On arrival at the airport, our exclusive VIP Arrival Service whisks you from the terminal to a comfortable lounge where you can relax while entry formalities are handled – and your checked luggage is retrieved and brought to you. Upon completion of immigration and customs, you’ll be escorted by private car to the luxurious Taj Dubai in the heart of the city. The rest of this day is yours to relax and enjoy as you wish.

Begin your guided sightseeing at the famous Gold and Spice Souk before taking an Abra ride to the Bastakia area to view the traditional wind towers and the old Fahidi Fort. Our morning ends at the Sheikh Mohammed Center for Cultural Understanding. Here in this traditional wind-tower house, we’ll sit down to a congenial lunch of authentic Emirati cuisine. Your engaging private guide and special local guest will be on hand to continue this morning’s exploration into the culture, stories and daily life of Dubai.

Less than 100 years ago, Dubai was a sleepy trading post known primarily for the pearl trade. But in just a few generations, it has morphed into a truly cosmopolitan global city, a major world transport hub, and a regional financial center. Its skyline is recognized around the world and you will take in the breathtaking views from the Observation Deck atop the Burj Khalifa. Designed by the American architectural firm of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill and soaring 2,722 feet, it’s the world’s tallest freestanding structure. At the Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, an innovative 160-foot long walk-through tunnel takes you 35 feet under water through a 2-million gallon aquarium; you’ll have 270° views as thousands of marine animals including hundreds of sharks and rays swim all around you!

This evening enjoy dinner at abd al Wahab, one of our favorite local restaurants.  Meals B+L+D

Showcasing Dubai’s 21st-century engineering and architectural wonders, your privately guided tour begins today at Souk Madinat Jumeirah, an evocative re-imagining of an authentic Middle Eastern marketplace complete with winding streets, pillared arcades, merchant stalls and boutiques selling both high-end luxury goods and traditional artisan-made crafts. Tantalizing food stalls, street musicians and the ringing sounds of craftsmen at work complete this experience of an old world, Arabian bazaar. Finish your guided sightseeing at Dubai Marina and Palm Jumeirah – an astounding manmade archipelago in the Arabian Gulf and home to iconic landmarks like the soaring Atlantis Resort.

Later this afternoon, a relaxing cruise will offer a different perspective of the iconic landmarks of Dubai and the Palm Jumeirah. Relax onboard and take in the many impressive sites that grace this manmade archipelago and the shores of the Arabian Gulf – including the sprawling Madinat Jumeirah, the impressive Atlantis resort and of course the iconic, sail-like silhouette of the Burj Al Arab!  Meals B

Leaving the glittering skyline of Dubai behind, this morning’s privately chauffeured drive takes you deep into Rub’ al Khali – the fabled Empty Quarter Desert. Uninterrupted by any tree or vegetation, rolling windswept dunes of fine khaki and orange-colored sand, sometimes soaring hundreds of feet high, stretch endlessly toward the cloudless horizon. Rising like a mirage in this vast silent landscape is the luxurious Anantara Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort. On arrival, settle in to your spacious air-conditioned room with its captivating views of the desert, private terrace + garden, complimentary WiFi, and a sumptuous bath with oversized round soaking tub and rain shower.
The balance of your afternoon and evening is free to experience the exceptional desert setting of Qasr Al Sarab. You might also lounge by the pool, indulge in a spa treatment or join one of the guided activities offered by the resort. Three dining venues offer a range of international cuisines including Middle Eastern, Mediterranean and a fine steakhouse.  Meals B

“It was very still with the silence we have driven from our world.” So wrote the British explorer Sir Wilfred Thesiger as he sat atop a dune here in Rub’ al Khali. It’s been 70 years since he made that observation, but little has changed in the Empty Quarter. And today you’ll have a chance to tailor your desert exploration to your personal tastes and love of adventure. Our resort offers a variety of expertly-guided small group expeditions and excursions - and you can choose one of these to enjoy with our compliments:

+ Desert Walk: With a variety of terrains and routes available near our resort, this guided nature expedition can be tailored to your taste for physical challenge. Sunrise and sunset are the best times to experience the majestic beauty of the desert. Along the way, your expert guide will share great insight into the history, culture and animals of the Empty Quarter.
+ Falcon and Saluki Show: The ancient sport of falconry and hunting with Salukis are ancient time-honored traditions in the United Arab Emirates. In addition to observing first hand and learning about the skill and grace of these creatures, you’ll engage with local residents for an authentic cultural experience.
+ Dune Bashing: Thrill seekers will love this action-packed 4x4 expedition! Setting out in the early morning or late afternoon, skilled professional drivers will take you across the desert dunes for an unforgettable adventure.

After an early breakfast, journey through the desert to Abu Dhabi where you’ll check in to the luxurious Anantara Eastern Mangroves Hotel and Spa. Then join your guide to visit the unique Falcon Hospital which provides critical care for up to 200 of these amazing birds of prey. Learn about the enduring importance of falconry in the local culture and watch as these birds are treated by specialist veterinarians and skilled technicians – including pedicurists who care for the birds’ sharp talons! A flying demonstration by healthy falcons reveals their extraordinary grace and power.
As you continue your privately guided sightseeing, you’ll be spellbound by the new additions to Abu Dhabi’s glittering skyline and the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Visible from all of the bridges that connect Abu Dhabi with the mainland, this is one of the world’s largest mosques – topped with 80 white marble domes that are supported by 1,000 pillars and punctuated by graceful 350-foot tall minarets. In the heart of the city, Union Square will fascinate you with its unusual sculptural landmarks inspired by the rich customs and traditions of the United Arab Emirates. Continue along the lovely waterfront Corniche and finish your sightseeing at the city’s liveliest markets. Hidden among the fruit and vegetable vendors at Port Zayed, Abu Dhabi’s Date Market is a bustling alley where merchants specialize in the remarkable variety of dried fruits and dates popular throughout the Middle East; don’t’ be surprised if you are invited to sample some of these tempting treats! Not far away, the Fish Market is filled with freshly caught seafood brought in that day by the city’s fleet of dhows. Other businesses specialize in cleaning and preparing the fish to their customer’s exact tastes – grilled, fried, or seared!  Meals B

With your personal guide, today’s tour plumbs the old and new facets of this vibrant desert city. You’ll begin at Qasr Al Hosn; this is the symbolic birthplace of the Emirate and traces its origins to the middle of the 18th century when Bani Yas tribesmen built a simple coral and stone watch tower to protect their settlement and coastal trade routes. Later, succeeding generations of the ruling Al Nahayan family added imposing walls, towers, entrances and residential quarters – transforming Qasr Al Hosn into an impressive fort and finally the iconic palace it is today. On-site exhibits tell the fascinating story of Abu Dhabi and its people through the evolution of the city’s oldest building.
Newly opened to visitors in 2019, Abu Dhabi’s Presidential Palace is next on the day’s itinerary. Inside the Palace complex, you’ll visit Qasr Al Watan. Also known as the Palace of Nations, this glorious landmark pays homage to the region’s heritage and design – with soaring white domes, lovely Arabian gardens, a vast marble-inlaid courtyard and the Great Hall – sumptuously decorated using white, yellow and blue to symbolize the landscapes of the UAE. Inside there are also exhibits celebrating the region’s customs and traditions.
Today’s sightseeing also includes the newly-opened Louvre Abu Dhabi, set in a striking waterfront building designed by the accomplished French architect Jean Nouvel. This is a ground-breaking cultural partnership with the Louvre in Paris and includes the sharing of artwork and important temporary exhibitions that will range from the ancient world to the modern era.
You’ll finish your sightseeing on a high note at the Jumeirah Etihad Towers Observation Deck. On the 74th floor nearly 1,000 feet in the air, you’ll enjoy High Tea and spectacular views of the city.  Meals B


Back to Dubai for Departure

You’ll be escorted to the Dubai Airport for your onward journey.  Meals B

United Arab Emirates MapSearch


Date RangeFrom
01 May 2024 - 17 September 2024$7,099
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18 September 2024 - 24 September 2024$7,099
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25 September 2024 - 18 October 2024$7,499
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19 October 2024 - 24 October 2024$7,499
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25 October 2024 - 25 October 2024$8,299
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26 October 2024 - 31 October 2024$8,299
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01 November 2024 - 24 November 2024$8,299
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25 November 2024 - 01 December 2024$8,299
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02 December 2024 - 09 December 2024$8,299
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10 December 2024 - 16 December 2024$8,299
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17 December 2024 - 19 December 2024$8,299
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20 December 2024 - 20 December 2024$8,299
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21 December 2024 - 26 December 2024$8,999
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27 December 2024 - 28 December 2024$8,999
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29 December 2024 - 31 December 2024$8,999
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01 January 2025 - 04 January 2025$8,999
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05 January 2025 - 18 January 2025$8,299
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19 January 2025 - 25 January 2025$8,299
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26 January 2025 - 05 February 2025$8,499
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06 February 2025 - 10 February 2025$8,499
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11 February 2025 - 12 February 2025$8,499
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13 February 2025 - 17 February 2025$8,499
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18 February 2025 - 20 March 2025$8,499
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21 March 2025 - 27 March 2025$8,499
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28 March 2025 - 31 March 2025$8,499
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Family + Friends

Travel is one of  life's most rewarding experiences, perhaps even more so when it's shared with those you love! Take advantage of our Family & Friends offer and Save $100 per person anytime you book 4 or more people on the same A+R program.

About Your Journey

Get Ready To Expand Your Horizons
With so much diversity concentrated in a relatively small geographic area, it should come as no surprise that your journey will encompass a wide variety of activities and experiences. As you explore the Arabian Peninsula, you might travel by comfortable air-conditioned sedan, step aboard a traditional wooden abra, like the ones that have been plying these waters for generations, or set out across the desert in a 4WD vehicle to experience authentic Bedouin ways. You’ll marvel at towering 7-star hotels, impressive mosques, ancient forts and ingeniously constructed wind-tower homes that date to the region’s earliest days.

Come with an open mind and a spirit of adventure, and be ready to switch gears during your stay as we show you the spectacular modern wonders, scenic beauty and enduring cultural ways of the United Arab Emirates.

Your Health
Recommended inoculations for travel may change and you should consult your practitioner for current recommendations before your upcoming journey. It is your responsibility to ensure that you meet all health entry requirements, obtain the recommended inoculations, take all recommended medication, and follow all medical advice in relation to your trip. Inoculation requirements can be found on the Center for Disease Control (CDC) website at Also check the World Health Organization (WHO) website before you travel internationally.

Prescription Pharmaceuticals: If you are traveling with medications, we recommend you carry a typed list of all prescriptions and over-the-counter medications when navigating airport security. Some countries require visitors to provide a list of all medications as a requirement of entry. Whenever possible, consider packing the prescriptions and medications in their original containers. In addition to satisfying Customs and Immigration authorities, this practice is an invaluable precaution in the event you must refill your prescription during travel. It’s also advisable that you carry only the amount of prescription/medication that you’ll need for your visit plus a small number of extras.

Persons visiting the United Arab Emirates (UAE), are required to complete an “Issue of Permit to Import Medicines for Personal Use” if traveling with drugs that are considered narcotics, controlled or semi-controlled. Click on this link to access a list of medications requiring pre-approval:

 If you are unsure if your medications require pre-approval, consult with your physician and/or the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) prior to travel.

Click on this link to access the UAE MOHAP website for details and registration instructions:  
You may email if you require assistance.

Medical supplies including CPAP machines for sleep apnea can be brought as an additional carry-on with most airlines.  If you are traveling with a CPAP machine, please let Alexander+Roberts know in advance and consider bringing a backup battery in case of inconsistent electricity supply. Distilled water is available in most destinations. Make sure you have all appropriate adaptors, although newer machines have universal power supplies that can adapt to various voltages. Bring extra supplies (especially cushions) and replacement parts as repairing the machine while travelling may not be possible.

Physical Activity
 Ancient sites worldwide were constructed well before building codes or the existence of safety and accessibility standards. And in order to maintain the architectural and historical integrity that attracts visitors in the first place, many of the sites have been intentionally left in their natural state. As such, you will encounter uneven terrain, irregular steps, and a lack of handrails, barriers, ramps and cautionary warning signs where you might expect them back home. Therefore, it is extremely important for you to take great care and caution when exploring these sites. Pay attention to all instructions and do not wander away from your guide, especially off designated paths into unmarked terrain. When exploring on your own, heed all regulations, be extra mindful of your surroundings and note any conditions that could increase the risks (poor visibility, wet slippery surfaces, etc).

For travelers with mobility issues or physical challenges, be prepared for less accessibility than we enjoy in the United States. Hotels may be limited in the provisions made for such travelers and some do not have elevators. Airports are not always fully equipped with modern jetways, and ramps for wheelchairs are often absent.

We regret that we cannot provide individual assistance for guests who need mobility assistance.  Nor can we ensure that local vehicles will be wheelchair-equipped. For these reasons, a qualified companion must accompany guests who need such assistance.
Physical limitations requiring special attention and/or equipment must be reported when making reservations. We will make reasonable attempts to accommodate special needs but cannot provide individual assistance.  Should issues become apparent on tour that impact other guests, we may require individual assistance be obtained or require the guest to return home early at the guest’s expense.  

Your International Flights
If you have not already made your international flight arrangements, you should consider taking advantage of our excellent relationships with outstanding international carriers including Lufthansa, British Airways, United Airlines and Emirates. We can book your air in Economy, Premium Economy or Business Class with advice on seat availability - and even advance seat assignments on many carriers and routes. Booking your international air with A+R will allow us to directly assist you with any flight disruptions, delays or cancellations while on-tour.

A Word about Hotels
As in other parts of the world, check-in time for most hotels is around 3:00PM and check-out time is typically 11AM. Should you arrive early to find that your room is not yet ready, the hotel will likely be more than happy to store your luggage securely for a few hours. That leaves you unencumbered to explore a bit at your own pace - or to relax with a cup of tea or coffee either in the lobby or at a nearby cafe.

Similarly, if you have a late departure flight, hotels will store your luggage after you’ve checked-out, leaving you free to explore and relax until it’s time to go to the airport. Depending upon how busy they are, hotels may allow you to occupy your room for another hour or two without charge; check with the front desk to determine if this is possible for your day of departure.

If early check-in or late check-out is required, advance arrangements can usually be confirmed for the cost of an additional night. Please notify us or your travel agent if you wish to confirm either.

Dubai and Abu Dhabi have an arid subtropical climate due to its location within the northern desert belt. The skies overhead are generally completely blue with little cloud cover resulting in weather that is generally hot and humid. The months of June through September are generally extremely hot and humid with maximum temperatures averaging above 100°F. During this time, sandstorms occur intermittently, in some cases reducing visibility to a few feet. Short and irregular rainfall is typical for the Middle East, with most of the rainfall in Dubai occurring between November and March. This period also sees dense fog on some days. On average, January is the coolest month in the year.

Money Matters
The unit of currency in the UAE is the Dirham (AED). Exchange rates can vary widely but one US dollar roughly equals about 3.7 AED.

Credit cards are accepted at major hotels, upscale restaurants and in the larger stores. You will find ATMs in the major tourist areas, but we recommend that you do not depend on your ATM card or debit card for your money. We recommend that before you travel you inform both your bank and your credit card company which countries you will be visiting. It is also a good idea to inquire about fees for transactions abroad.

Foreign currency and US dollar traveler’s checks can be exchanged for local currency at your hotel, banks and money changers. In general, you will get the best rate of exchange at banks and authorized money changers. However, the convenience of changing money right in your hotel may be worth the slight loss. Some banks charge a per-check commission for currency exchange, so cash the largest denomination you can.

For your on-tour convenience, we have included all gratuities except for your Trip Leaders or guides. This includes drivers, baggage porters and restaurant staff for all included meals; certainly, if any of these services are exceptional and go above-and-beyond, then feel free to tip additionally.

For your Trip Leaders or guides, many of our guests find it helpful to have some guidelines; in that spirit, we recommend tipping them $10 to $15 per person, per day.

Although not included in your Tour Fare, please remember that these gratuities are always at your discretion. They are appreciated as recognition for excellent service, but whether you tip, and how much, is entirely up to you.

When you’re out enjoying meals and activities that are not part of your A+R itinerary, here are tipping guidelines in accordance with local practices:

•    Upscale restaurants: 10% to 15% is a good tip
•    Spa Services: Add 10% to 15 %.
•    Taxis: Most people will round up their cab fare to the nearest note and let the driver keep the change

Tourist Tax
Please be advised that the city of Dubai has imposed a tourist tax, or “Tourism Dirham” that must be paid directly by guests to their hotel. This tax is assessed per room per night and must be paid at time of check out. Since it is impossible for this fee to be paid in advance, it is not included in the cost of your program.

The fees are as follows:
•    AED 20 (approx. US$5) per room or bedroom per night for stays in 5-star hotels and Deluxe hotel apartments
•    AED 15 (approx. USD $4) per room or bedroom per night for stays in 4-star hotels, Superior hotel apartments and Deluxe Holiday homes

About Electricity
Electric current is 220V at 50 Hz AC and outlets support two round-pin plugs or three round- or flat-pin plugs. An adapter plug and a converter may be necessary to charge your electronic devices, and are usually available from the front desk. For more information on plugs and sockets, review the information at:  

Internet and Phone calls
If you plan to bring your cell phone when you travel, please check with your carrier to ensure that your plan covers international calls and/or mobile data from the countries you will visit on your trip and whether there may be money saving plans available from your carrier that can be arranged in advance. Alternatively, local prepaid SIM cards for your phone are usually available at the airport where you arrive and can be used to tap into local service providers. Wi-fi is available at many hotels either complimentary or for a fee. Waiting until you have Wi-Fi access allows you to use email and other applications without using mobile data. Check with the front desk upon check in regarding access details.

 If you need to place an international call from your hotel room, please check first with the Front Desk about their rates. Hotels often contract with outside vendors to provide direct-dial service for overseas calls – and the rates can be unexpectedly high!

The dialing code for the UAE is +971; you’ll need to prefix the local number with this dialing code when calling from outside of the UAE.

Is the Water Safe to Drink?
Tap water in the UAE is generally safe to drink, but we recommend staying with bottled water to avoid any issues.

Meal Time!
The culinary traditions of the United Arab Emirates have their origins in the limitations and opportunities imposed by geography and climate. As befits a Bedouin culture rooted in nomadic herding, meats and dairy products feature prominently in UAE cuisine. Vegetables don’t thrive in the arid UAE climate, and so are used sparingly. Spices like thyme, turmeric, saffron and cardamom are used often in Emirati cooking, and the spicy dishes are often accompanied by cooling side dishes or garnishes of yogurt, cucumber or mint. In many homes, meals are cooked together in one pot as a stew. In addition to gah-wa (coffee), red tea with mint is often served after meals to aid in digestion.

In the cosmopolitan cities of Dubai and Abu Dhabi, swank global chain outposts and celebrity-chef-branded restaurants are patronized by wealthy Emiratis and foreign visitors alike. There are also legions of inexpensive restaurants geared toward foreign construction workers and service industry employees from around the world, eager for a taste of home. Alcohol is quite expensive and is only served in restaurants attached to licensed hotels or clubs. The fact that almost every food item must be imported to this desert state adds to the bill. People eat late in Dubai, with few diners at the fancier establishments sitting down before 9:00PM. The weekend falls on Friday and Saturday, so booking in advance is essential on Thursday and Friday nights and for Friday brunches.

Know the Customs + Traditions
We cannot overemphasize the need to respect local villagers and their customs in our sightseeing adventures. The ability to explore freely is a privilege that must not be misused. Some principles of etiquette are outlined below. Please follow them carefully to avoid giving offense.

The people of the UAE offer a very warm welcome to guests. You will find that traditional Arab greetings are still widely observed and it is good manners to exchange greetings and handshakes when meeting. These courtesies should be observed both in commercial dealings (e.g. shopping in the souk) and on a personal level.

The United Arab Emirates is a Muslim country and it is important to respect the local customs. It is highly recommended that women do not wear strappy sundresses, short skirts or shorts, low-necked dresses or tops in public places (e.g. offices, souks, town and shopping areas). The most suitable wear in public is covered shoulders and skirts that fall below the knee. Men should wear shirts and long trousers. Beachwear should not be worn except at the beach or pool area. Shorts are allowed (except in mosques), provided they are knee length. It is customary for women to cover their shoulders and their heads when visiting a mosque.  

Non-Muslims are permitted to bring in four liters of alcohol by air only. Alcohol should not be consumed in public except in licensed hotels. Restaurants situated outside of hotels and clubs are not permitted to serve alcohol. It is illegal to carry liquor in your car. Liquor may not be consumed by people under the age of 21.

Do not take photographs of individuals without their permission. Women in particular do not like being photographed. It is forbidden to take pictures of military facilities, borders and airports.

Public holidays of note (subject to change based on the moon cycle)
New Year’s Day                    January 1st
Eid Al Fitr (3 days)                 June 5th
Eid Al Adha (4 days)                August 12th
Islamic New Year                    September 1st    
Martyr’s Day                        November 30
National Day                        December 2nd
Prophet Mohammed’s Birthday        December 12th

Serving of alcohol is not permitted for a period of 24 hours starting at sunset on the eve of all religious holidays.

Local Time
The UAE is 9 hours ahead of New York and 4 hours ahead of London.
                 Sun - Thurs              Friday & Saturday        
Government    7:00AM-2:30PM                CLOSED                     
Banks                 8:00AM-1:00PM                CLOSED        
Shops        10:00AM-6:00PM            10:00AM-12:00AM    

Some establishments may close for a time in the midday, usually between 1:00PM and 4:00PM. The weekend is celebrated on Friday and Saturday.

Conversing with the Locals
Arabic is the official language of the UAE, but English is widely spoken and you should have little difficulty as a tourist. Menus in restaurants are usually available in English for travelers. Even with language difficulties, people are very friendly and will generally go out of their way to help you.

A Note about Traveling with Minors
 Many countries currently require documentary evidence of a relationship between minors traveling with an adult. Although UAE is not one of them, we strongly recommend that parents traveling alone with a minor carry a notarized letter from the absent parent authorizing the trip, regardless of whether the parent is married or divorced. Never-married parents, parents whose spouse has died, and parents who have been granted sole legal custody of children are encouraged to carry notarized proof of their status, including death certificate where appropriate. Grandparents traveling with grandchildren and adults traveling with children who are not their own should carry letters of authorization from both parents of the children. It is wise to also carry the child’s birth certificate with the original seal. Please visit the state department’s website if you plan to travel with a minor.

Packing Advice to Get You Started
Lightweight summer clothing is suitable for most of the year, but sweaters or jackets may be needed for the winter months, especially in the evenings. Comfortable footwear is a must, especially in the markets and on excursions.

Consider an Easy-to-carry Traveling Bag
It’s good to have a small bag to carry your daytime needs with you while traveling; a backpack is used by many travelers for this purpose. A water bottle is always handy to have in your traveling pack.

The Essentials
Hotels are well-equipped with tissues and toilet paper; however small packets of facial tissues and a small bottle of hand-sanitizer can be handy. Please bring your own lotions, contact lens solutions, cosmetics and feminine hygiene products. Bring extra prescriptions (packed partially in your hand luggage) as well as cold medicine, aspirin and cures for intestinal troubles. You should also bring a good sunblock lotion with you since high temperatures can intensify the impact of the sun. We recommend 30+ SPF. Insect repellent is also highly recommended.

Seeing + Capturing Your Experiences
Make a complete check of your camera equipment before you leave and make sure you have replacement or rechargeable batteries and additional memory cards.

Camera drones are not allowed for use on our tours as they can detract from the experiences of your fellow travelers. If, however you plan to bring a drone for use in your free time, please pay close attention to the local aviation laws.  Most historic sites and national parks explicitly prohibit the use of personal drones, so it is your own responsibility to acquire any necessary permission and adhere to local laws should you plan on traveling with a drone.  

On-Tour Hunger Pangs
High-protein snacks are good for both the air trip as well as for your activities while traveling: nuts, raisins, granola bars and peanut butter are popular with many of our travelers.

A Few Final Tips
Some handy items we recommend include: an extra pair of glasses, an alarm clock, zip-lock plastic bags and a bottle opener.

Reminders about Your Baggage
Baggage restrictions vary by airline, and we ask you to review the airlines on your itinerary and review baggage restrictions on their website to determine the maximum number of bags and weights that are allowed.  In Economy, passengers are limited to one bag.  Keep in mind that the flights that are included on your tour are in Economy and are limited to one checked bag with weight limits.  So when packing for your trip, consider the bag and weight restrictions on all of your flights, not just your international arrangements.

Most airlines charge travelers for additional bags and excess weight so we advise you to pack as lightly as possible. Most of our hotels offer laundry services.

TSA Packing Tips
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) publishes a comprehensive list of items that are Permitted and Prohibited in carry-on and checked baggage. You can find the complete list online at

For vacation travelers, the important thing to remember is that only one small bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes can be in your carry-on bag when you pass through security. Each item is limited to 3.4 ounces (100ml) - and all containers must fit inside a clear, 1-quart sized, zip-top bag. If you have containers that are larger than 3.4 ounces, they must go inside your checked baggage.

Medications, baby formula/food and breast milk are allowed in reasonable quantities exceeding the 3.4-ounce limit, and they do not have to be in a zip-lock bag. You should declare these items at the checkpoint, and keep in mind that TSA Officers may need to inspect them.

Other Recommendations:

•    Jewelry, cash, tablet devices and laptops should be in your carry-on baggage. Tape your business card to the bottom of your laptop for easy identification if it gets separated for inspection.
•    Avoid accessories and jewelry that contain metal as they may set off the metal detector at the check point. This saves having to take them off and put them back on as you pass through security.
•    Wear slip-on shoes that can be easily removed and placed on the conveyor built to be x-rayed at the security check-point.
•    If you wish to place a lock on your checked luggage, it must be of a make and model approved by the TSA.
•    Do not pack wrapped gifts and do not bring wrap gifts to the security check point.

A Few Words about Safety + Security
Traveling abroad is no different than visiting a new city in the United States: use common sense precautions to safeguard your person and your possessions at all times. Remember to wash your hands frequently and use hand-sanitizer. Local areas are very safe to walk any time of day or night as the vigilance of the police and the severity of Islamic prosecutions represent an effective deterrent. Be aware of your environment, especially in very crowded areas.  
•    Do not go out and about with your passport unless specifically instructed to do so by your local guides.
•    Keep your extra cash and passport in the in-room safe of your hotel. In the few instances where they are not available, then store these items in the safety deposit box at the front desk.
•    Always make a copy of your passport, credit cards and e-tickets and keep them separate from the originals so that they can be more readily replaced if lost or stolen. Leave extra copies with someone at home who you can reach while traveling. Or consider scanning these documents and emailing them to an address that you can access while abroad.
•    If you don’t already own one, consider investing in a money belt that can be concealed under your clothing. This is a good place to keep the cash and credit cards that you need for personal expenses while sightseeing, shopping and touring.
•    Do not display large amounts of cash in public.  Carry your purse with the strap across your chest, not dangling from your shoulder or arm.
These measures will save you countless time and trouble should your credit cards, airline tickets or passport be lost or stolen.  
Some Helpful Web Links

U.S. Department of State
Travel documents and tips; State Department Travel announcements; Consular Information for countries you will visit
Center for Disease Control and Prevention
General health information for travelers and health information on specific destinations

Transportation Security Administration (select Traveler Information)
Tips for travelers going through security at the airport

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (select Travel)
Helpful information for returning U.S. citizens travelling abroad

Calling the U.S. from Abroad
AT&T’s USADirect service offers convenient telephone access to the U.S. from around the world

Currency Converter

For information about your tour: itinerary, customer reviews, visas, Travel Protection Plan, payment and cancellation details