Wednesday 21 February 2024 (UAE)

Dubai driving schools

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Driving schools in Dubai

None of the driving schools in Dubai have an excellent reputation, or even a good reputation - there's stories of appalling driving standards about all of them. Listen to a driving safety expert (allegedly), Adam Kechil, on Dubai Eye 103.8 (a Dubai radio station) for his polite criticism of Dubai driving schools (and mostly justified, but still patronising, criticism of Dubai drivers). Catch him broadcasting after 0900 on Sunday mornings (in 2008-2009?). Most of the time he sounds like an RTA spin doctor but he does name two driving schools that are worthy of consideration:

The larger driving schools may be able to get your repeat test organised more quickly eg within a week instead of a month, which is probably the main advantage. If the rumours of monthly quotas for passing the driving test are true, then it would make sense to try and do a driving test at the beginning of the month. Some driving schools in Dubai will pick you up from and deliver you back to home or office.

Lessons of about 45 mins will cost you around 50-100 dhs each. Schools will attempt to sell you a course of 30-40 lessons but you can get that reduced if you know how to drive already - ask them to test you (there may be an additional fee).

There are about 25 driving schools with 3,000 cars in Dubai ready to unleash your pent-up road rage but not at any old time yet since the RTA (Roads and Transport Authority of Dubai) have restricted driving schools to allowing trainee drivers out in public from the hours of 0900-1400 and 1500-1700 on Sat-Thu from November 2006 (previously was 0800-1330 and 1500-1900) which overlaps nicely with the rush-hour traffic generated by those residents working split shifts in Dubai. Other training hours are Fridays 0700-1100, holidays 0700-1700, Ramadan 1000-1300 and 1500-1700. Restricted areas (no training at any time) are Sheikh Zayed Rd, Sheikh Rashid Rd, Ittihad Rd, Airport Tunnel and within residential areas.

If you can find a private driving instructor, you may have more flexible timings. Money saved will not be much. Finding one through newspaper advertisements is a bit of a lottery though - try asking for recommendations.

Bribes to get a Dubai driving licence
Driving lessons at the Dubai Autodrome Race and Driving School

This is an entirely different scenario. A lot more fun but a lot less useful for your daily commuting in Dubai.

The Dubai Autodrome has instructors who will take you for a drive around a race track in one of several different race cars (Audis, Subaru Imprezas) and then you can have a go yourself. It'll cost you between 200 and 1000 dhs depending on what you choose.

Last update Saturday 13-Aug-2011.
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