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News archive about the Salik road toll in Dubai, UAE
For the most recent news, see the Salik UAE
road toll page.
Sunday 20 January 2008 - no Salik Tags available and Garhood Bridge Salik toll gates moving
- Several reports of a shortage of Salik Tags with people saying that they are not available at Abu Dhabi petrol stations, and few or no petrol stations on the way from Abu Dhabi to Dubai had Salik tags in stock. The RTA helpline was apparently as unhelpful as ever, saying that they had no reports of shortages, and those who wanted to complain should come to the RTA in Dubai (a trip that could involve driving through a Salik toll point).
- Similar complaints were heard from visitors from other emirates, and Oman.
- More complaints about the online recharge facility slow or not working.
- To test things out, we bought a Salik tag in December 2007. Almost 2 months later, we still haven't received an SMS with Salik account details.
- The Salik gates on the way, or after, the Garhood Bridge will be moved to the top of the new Garhoud Bridge says Engineer Maitha Bin Adai, CEO of the RTA Traffic and Roads Agency.
Tuesday 01 January 2008 - Salik is a success
A couple of days after the RTA seemed to imply the implementation of Salik was a shambles, by cancelling fines, they then said Salik was a success with a 20% reduction in traffic congestion on the Garhoud Bridge and Sheikh Zayed Road, and 50% some days. Presumably that means if you took an hour to cross the Garhood Bridge from the Trade Center before Salik (a 5 km trip), it now only takes 48 minutes. Joyful news indeed.
29-31 December 2007 - Salik fines waived
- The RTA said they would waive Salik fines from 01 July to 31 October for all motorists, whether or not they had registered with Salik, as a "goodwill gesture". Dubai residents who had diligently followed RTA instructions and abided by the Salik rules, fumed. Salik-busters were delighted.
- The RTA backed down the next day and said only registered Salikers would have their fines waived. Non-registered Salik users would still be whacked. Motorists who'd registered with Salik still fumed and demanded refunds of all the Salik tolls they'd paid, in blogs and newspaper letter pages.
- The RTA also said motorcyclists would be completely exempt from any Salik charges until 31 December 2007, whether registered or not. Any motorcyclists who have paid a fine can fill in a form at the RTA to claim them back. The RTA still didn't say where motorcyclists should stick their Salik tags ... some motorists had a suggestion though ...
Monday 10 December 2007 - Salik expansion again
- Emirates Business 24/7, a new UAE business newpaper launched 09 December 2007, reports that the Salik system is due to expand, based on comments from an anonymous RTA official that an expansion was under review. Which sounds the same as what was reported in November 2007.
- The newspaper report says electronic Salik toll gates will be installed on Al Khail Road, Al Ittihad Road, Business Bay Bridge, Emirates Road, Maktoum Bridge, and in Shindagha Tunnel by 2009. The following year, more Salik tollgates will be installed on additional Dubai Creek crossings that are still to be built.
Saturday 08 December 2007 - Emirates Islamic Bank provides Salik payment
Emirates Islamic Bank (EIB) now allows their customers to make Salik payments at branches, online, and via ATM machines. At least, they say they do.
Wednesday 28 November 2007 - RTA makes no comment on Salik expansion
Arabian Business asked the RTA about the Salik expansion rumours and received a "no comment".
Sunday 25 November 2007 - Salik expansion coming?
- A UAE Arabic newspaper carried a report that an expansion of the Salik toll gates was being studied with additional toll points possibly located at Business Bay Bridge, the Floating Bridge, Maktoum Bridge, Shindagha Tunnel. The report was based on an internal RTA letter to their Salik committee asking them to study and report on a Salik phase 2 proposal. The RTA would not comment on the story.
- In August 2007, the Arab News (a Saudi based paper) carried a story of Salik expansion rumours, which the RTA denied at the time.
Wednesday 21 November 2007 - Dubai Taxis to ask for Salik exemption
Emirates Today reported that the Dubai Taxi company CEO, Abdul Aziz Malik, was going to ask the RTA to exempt taxis from Salik tolls on the basis that empty taxis are still charged, so they cause traffic congestion by trying to avod Salik toll gates. He said an exemption would fit with the RTA's motto of "smooth and safe transport for all". Dubai Taxi is part of the RTA, so you'd expect Mr Malik probably won't be put on hold for too long when he makes the call.
Monday 19 November 2007 - School buses charged Salik tolls after all
The Khaleej Times reports that school buses are being charged Salik tolls after all, despite the RTA originally saying that school buses would be exempt. The newspaper report quoted an RTA official saying that the matter was under investigation and a decision would be made on whether or not to exempt school buses, but didn't explain why the RTA had reneged on their original exemption.
Saturday 06 October 2007 - Salik still having teething troubles and how to use Salik for free
- The Gulf News successfully tested a theory that pressing a 1 dh coin against the Salik Tag resulted in no Salik toll fee being charged (and then advised motorists not to do this). The RTA said that if a toll fee is not read from the Salik tag, the number plate of the vehicle is recorded and the fee will be charged.
- Salik fines have been waived for the first 15 days apparently, rather than the first week as reported 28 Sep 2007.
- Some motorists without Salik tags say they have not seen any fines recorded. The RTA says all violations have been recorded, but how long it takes for a fine to end up with the driver is unknown, and the system may be suffering from technical glitches.
Friday 28 September 2007 - Salik fines waived
The head of the RTA, Mattar Al Tayer said Salik fines have been waived for motorists who didn't have Salik tags in the first week of operation - "We have waived all the fines imposed on motorists who used Salik gates without Salik tags during the first week of July," (reported in the Gulf News).
Thursday 20 September 2007 - Salik online recharge system available
- The RTA says that Salik users can now add credit to their Salik accounts online using a credit card, e-dirhams, or via direct debit from your bank account. Minimum recharge amount is 50 dhs.
- Salik subscribers can also check their balance online, and number of toll gate crossings. Personal data can be updated and financial statements printed out.
- Another option for checking accounts is through the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system by dialling 800-72545.
- All the above options are what Salik users are supposed to be able to do. There are, however, still complaints from some users that data is inaccurate ie credit top-ups not showing up, low credit warning messages being received despite having enough credit, and so on.
Wednesday 12 September 2007 - more traffic cones directing you to Salik toll gates
More of those traffic cones appeared on the Sheikh Zayed Road, after the Trade Center Roundabout in direction Garhood bridge - if you're in the left hand lanes, you're stuck there all the way to the Garhood bridge. This caught out a few motorists, forcing them to use the Salik toll gate.
Tuesday 11 September 2007 - Traffic jams are your fault
- Continuing in the same vein as Salik account problems being your fault last month, the RTA has said traffic jams in Dubai (of which there were many this week) are your fault also, with Mattar Al Tayer, the RTA boss, saying "Some drivers deliberately ignore driving and traffic rules, others are just drunk, while some are illiterate and cannot read the variable road signs.This is our biggest problem in Dubai". The drunk driver comment might have been prompted by a car following some alcohol-inspired navigation and driving off the Floating Bridge a few days ago when it was closed. Mr Al Tayer also said that motorists on the Garhood Bridge are now happy after the introduction of Salik.
- Garhood Bridge motorists this past week have been left scratching heads and looking for their reverse gear with several apparently confusing lines of cones on the Bur Dubai side leading drivers in directions they didn't want to go. Mr Al Tayer's point about illiterate drivers appears to have some validity, since large signs over the Sheikh Zayed Road do say "Keep Left" for the Garhoud Bridge.
- Dedicated public bus lanes are due to be introduced by the end of 2007 (there was more news of this sometime in August).
Thursday 06 September 2007 - Traffic congestion will disappear "soon"
- A Gulf News report has the Head of the RTA, Mattar Al Tayer, reassuring us that traffic jams in Dubai will soon be a thing of the past, and asks residents to be patient. For another 3 to 4 years while road development is in progress.
- The new Waterbus service is reported to be under-utilised with only 10% occupancy during the day.
Monday 03 September 2007 - Salik works so well, everyone uses it
A problem that was forecast to occur, has come to light as more schools open up this week after the summer holidays. So many people have started to use Salik, that there are traffic jams on the Salik routes. The Garhood Bridge was reported to be choked up yesterday. The RTA suggests parents send their children to school on school buses.
Sunday 02 September 2007 - Bus lanes and credit cards
- Public buses may get dedicated Bus-Only lanes.
- Not related to Salik, but another irritation for Dubai's motorists, is the news that EPPCO, EMARAT, and ENOC service stations (all the Dubai based ones) will add a surcharge for purchases made with a credit card. ADNOC remains free of surcharges, at least for now.
Thursday 30 August 2007 - Coming soon to a phone near you ... Salikman
- The RTA Salik department is reported to be phoning Salik users who
have not been charged any toll fees, to enquire about their accounts.
So it appears that they are trying to resolve charging errors. At least
the ones which mean they're not getting money.
- There are continued reports of Salik users not being charged, and
Salik non-users being charged. The obvious explanation is that the Salik
database has Salik accounts mixed up. The RTA explanation a couple of
weeks ago was that it was your fault for not filling in the form properly.
Tuesday 28 August 2007 - Rumours of more road tolls denied
- The Saudi-based Arab News carried a report that the Roads & Transport
Authority (RTA) denied yesterday's rumours
of more road tolls being introduced.
Monday 27 August 2007 - More road tolls coming
- There were reports, or rumours, that The RTA had started work on eight
new Salik road toll gates in Dubai, including Shindagha Tunnel, Maktoum
Bridge, Floating Bridge, Business Bay Bridge, Emirates Road, Al Khail
Road, and Nad Al Hamar Road.
- The RTA announced the widened Emirates Road will open on Friday -
the section from Sharjah to Al Awir intersection.
Sunday 26 August 2007 - Government schools start again
- Traffic jams everywhere as UAE government schools start up again.
If you're a lucky one with a Salik tag on your car, you should be fine,
as long as you stay on the Sheikh Zayed Road. Unfortunately, there are
no schools or residential areas actually on Sheikh Zayed Road so everyone
will have to enter and exit at some point. The ones near the Salik toll
points are especially choked up.
- Watch out next week Sunday, and the following Sunday, as all the private
schools start up after the summer holidays. Possible solutions include
skipping school, buying a helicopter, or carpooling (not
that it will alleviate traffic jams that much but with a bit of luck
someone else will drive and you can watch a movie).
Thursday 16 August 2007 - Dubai Water Bus starts again
- The first WaterBus service was launched (again) between Al Gubaiba
Station in Bur Dubai and Al Sabkha Station in Deira. Three more routes
will start up in September. The original first Waterbus service was launched
last month but stopped
a day later because captains couldn't see properly.
Wednesday 15 August 2007 - RTA blames Salik users for not receiving
- The RTA
says it's your fault if you didn't get an SMS with your account
details because you probably filled in the form incorrectly. The RTA
didn't say if any of the data from the 600,000 applications might have
been entered incorrectly into their system when it was transferred.
What do you think? Add your comments to the Salik
Friday 10 August 2007 - Special Salik lanes on Al Ittihad Road
- Al Ittihad road from Garhood Bridge towards Sharjah has two lanes
blocked off for the use of Salik tag holders only, up to Al Mulla Plaza.
Excellent say Saliktites delighted with the reduced journey times from
Dubai to Sharjah. Not at all say the drivers in the other lanes which
are even more choked up now. The RTA said the barricades would not be
- A statement from the RTA said "Traffic coming from the Al Rabat Road
and going north-bound to Sharjah on Al Ittihad Road is prohibited from
using the tunnel under the intersection of Maktoum-Airport Road and Al
Ittihad Road. Also, traffic coming from Baniyas and going towards Sharjah
on Al Ittihad Road driving to the right of the concrete barrier is prohibited
from entering the tunnel under the intersection of Al Ittihad Road with
Abu Hail-Al Quds Road (Al Qiyada Tunnel),".
Thursday 09 August 2007 - Emirates Road expansion
- The Emirates Road expansion will be ready for use by early September
according to the RTA with extra lanes between Sharjah and the Al Aweer
Wednesday 08 August 2007 - Salik tag shortages again
- There are shortages of Salik tags according to a Gulf News report
that found some service stations and banks with no Salik kits. But the
RTA said they hadn't received any complaints and have a hotline people
can phone to get alternative directions to un-Saliked routes.
Tuesday 07 August 2007 - Taxis charging double Salik fees
- Sharjah taxi drivers are reported to be charging passengers a double
fee of 8 dhs for using a Salik route to Dubai. The first 4 dhs is to
get to Dubai, the second is for the taxi so they can use a Salik route
back to Sharjah. Taxis from one emirate are not allowed to pick up passengers
in another emirate in the UAE, which seems to be an unusual way for the
authorities to reduce traffic congestion. Sharjah taxi companies said
their drivers are only supposed to charge a one-way Salik toll-fee.
Monday 06 August 2007 - Floating Bridge causes boat problems on Dubai
- The Floating Bridge has helped reduce traffic jams in Dubai according
to the RTA. Not for boats according to boat owners on the creek who cannot
now fully use the waterway while the bridge is in operation (from 0600
- Salik has helped reduce traffic jams in Dubai according to the RTA.
Not really say those who get snarled up at the Al Barsha exit of the
Sheikh Zayed Road where three lanes of traffic come to a standstill as
everyone tries to exit before the Al Basha Salik toll gate.
Saturday 04 August 2007 - Salik website improved but no recharging
- The RTA announced improvements to the Salik website which did not
seem to include a recharging facility yet. According to their press release,
Engineer Salah Mohd Al Marzouqi, Director of Intelligent Traffic Systems,
said, "The RTA is negotiating with several financial institutions to
add the recharging service on Salik's website."
- One improvement seems to be additional random charging for driving
through a Salik toll gate - residents of Dubai are saying that Salik
charges appear in their accounts for days when they have not driven through
the Salik checkpoint, which implies that residents don't agree that it
is an improvement.
Tuesday 31 July 2007
- An RTA representative said to the Khaleej Times that the
online system for recharging Salik accounts was expected to be available
by this week but should be available within the next week or so.
Wednesday 25 July 2007 - Floating Bridge closed, no cancer from Salik
- The Floating Bridge in Dubai was closed for two hours in the morning.
"The bridge was closed for about two hours as part of the contingency plan to
conduct some technical experiments during the peak hours so as to ensure that
the emergency system works effectively using the smart traffic systems," said
a senior official at the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) to the Gulf News.
The Dubai Police redirected traffic without knowing why.
"We do not know why the bridge was closed. We just diverted the traffic," said
an official to the Gulf News, which seems odd considering the number of cars
and personnel set to the bridge, and even helicopters and ambulances. The Gulf
News also published a photo showing the Floating Bridge apparently damaged and
"There was no problem or malfunction on the bridge. After the conduction of
the technical experiment we noticed some minor issues, which were immediately
tackled to reflect the RTA's commitment to surpass all types of difficulties
that could hamper the traffic smoothness," said Maitha Bin Adai, CEO of Traffic
and Roads section at the RTA, according to a 7 Days report.
- Rumours that Salik
tollgates could cause cancer were dismissed by
the RTA, the Roads and Transport Authority Dubai. However, there
was no further information on whether or not the RTA would be
renamed as the RTMA (Roads, Transport, and Medical Authority Dubai).
- The same report implied that an RTA offical said the tollgates
only use video cameras, but the RTA website says the
Salik tollgates use
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology.
Saturday 21 July 2007 - Taxis not using Salik, customers not paying
- Taxi customers have been complaining that taxi drivers refuse to take
a route with a Salik road toll, instead doing odd things like
driving through the MOTE (Mall of the Emirates) carpark to avoid
- Taxi drivers have been complaining that customers are refusing to
pay the extra Salik toll fee charge when they do go via a Salik route.
Thursday 19 July 2007 - WaterBus stops operating, Salik helpline available
- The Water Bus that was operational on Monday is reported
to be non-operational due to various issues - one of which
was that the captain couldn't see properly.
The RTA said they plan to start up the WaterBus service next month.
- The Salik toll system continues to please drivers using the toll roads
with the shortened journey times but continues to frustrate users
with text messages that provide incorrect Salik account information.
On the bright side, the Salik helpline has freed up somewhat and
you can now get through to ask about your Salik account.
Monday 16 July 2007 - Floating Bridge opens, WaterBus starts, Salik
- The Floating Bridge across Dubai creek
(a non-Salik route) is reported to be open this morning. This should
alleviate traffic on the Maktoum Bridge.
- The WaterBus is also being advertised as operational today, with ice-cold
airconditioning explaining the iceberg marketing campaign the RTA
has run for the past few weeks.
without windscreens have a solution to the problem
of where to put the Salik tag. Wheels, a UAE car magazine received
a response from the RTA saying that the Salik system would "deduct
the toll by identifying the number plate" for motorcyclists without
Sunday 15 July 2007 - Catboy's Salik song, Emirates Road widening
- Sloasis feat. Catboy (a Dubai based radio DJ) released a Salik song,
sung to the tune of "Don't Look Back in Anger", last week.
It is reportedly taking the charts by storm although Simon Cowell
apparently said "who?" when asked for comment. See www.catboy.net for
- The RTA said they're widening the Emirates
Road (a Salik-free route, for now) from 3 lanes to 6 lanes in
each direction, which will cost AED 333 million, or about half the annual
revenue expected from Salik. The section from Sharjah to Al Aweer
is almost finished and should be ready on 26 August 2007 (it was
started 25 Feb 2006). From Al Aweer Bridge to Arabian Ranches
Roundabout is scheduled to be finished on 15 April 2008. No information
on the route through Sharjah which will probably mean there will be an
even bigger bottleneck at National Paints Roundabout.
Saturday 14 July 2007 - Salik not helping traffic in Dubai
- The Khaleej Times seems to think Salik has bombed - they say "With
Salik failing to help ease the traffic situation in Dubai" after interviewing
some Dubai residents about Salik. Some of whom are already lining
up to catch the Dubai Metro. They'll be waiting a while, the first
Dubai Metro train isn't scheduled to roll out until September 2009.
Friday 13 July 2007 - Salik website overloaded, extra Salik fee for
rental cars, Salik poll
- The RTA responded to complaints about the Salik system by saying their
website gets over a million hits per day, which some say illustrates
they know as little about websites as they do about road tolls. The
RTA did not explain how overloaded web servers were responsible
for difficulties in accessing their telephone helpline but they did
say they have given out a secret helpline number to rental car companies.
- Large rental car companies justified the extra 1 dh charge per Salik
crossing by saying there are administrative costs involved and they
don't know how many Salik toll fees their cars are collecting. We
wonder why they don't use the secret Salikphone the RTA was talking
about. Some small rental car companies said they are not charging
Salik surcharges to their customers.
- ArabianBusiness.com are conducting a poll on their website in which
so far about half the voters said traffic congestion was
worse since the introduction of the Salik road toll system, a quarter
said traffic flow improved and the remaining quarter said
Salik had made no difference. As of this morning, a total of about
780 votes have been cast.
- The Garhood Bridge is still almost deserted.
Thursday 12 July 2007 - unexpected Salik account warnings
- SMS woes continue with Saliked motorists reporting warning messages
even when they have surplus funds in their accounts. The RTA was
unavailable for comment says the Gulf News.
Wednesday 11 July 2007 - Salik recharge problems
- More and more Salikians are wondering if they can be de-Saliked, as
frustrations with their Salik accounts grow. Driving on traffic-free
roads through the Salik toll gates is enjoyable but reported problems
with recharging Salik accounts and incorrect balance messages are
not. Another irritation is the noticeable increase in text message
spam from various banks and shops in Dubai. An interesting coincidence.
- The Salik website theoretically allows you to recharge your account,
but we suspect the one person who claims to have succeeded, possibly
sent their mother
200 dhs via Gmail instead.
- Recharge facilities at service stations are convenient when working
but sometimes queues slow things down, or the Salik recharging machines
prove unable to cope and go on strike.
- Some motorists say they received balance warnings even though they
haven't been through a Salik toll gate yet.
- The RTA
admits there are problems but they're trying to fix the
- Meanwhile, the Salik telephone helpline still hasn't earned the
- If you haven't had your text message from Salik, then according
to them, you can drive through the Salik gates without fear of penalty
until the message comes through. If it's been more than a week, then
you should try to contact Salik since there's a chance the message
went to the wrong phone number. Good luck, we know that's not going
to be easy.
- To best enjoy Salik, we suggest you recharge at service stations
(if one fails, don't fight it, just go to the next
one). Don't bother with the website, the Salik helpline, or email
address for another couple of weeks while the RTA sort themselves,
and their Salik system, out.
- Today's rumour is that the Gulf News and Etisalat
are going to attempt to get the Salik website banned due to its similarities
with Orkut, which was blocked this week because people were using
it for improper liasons. Apparently, the fear is that Salik users
can use other people's login ids, sent to them by mistake, for improper
Tuesday 10 July 2007 - Floating Bridge and Water Bus update
- The Floating Bridge will open next week, providing
another toll-free route across Dubai Creek. It will only be open
between 0600-2200 and connects Khalid Bin Al Waleed Rd in Oud Metha
to Ittihad Road in Deira.
- The RTA also says they will start operating water buses on the creek
from next week. Operating hours 0600 to 0000 (midnight) with a 10
minute wait between buses. The stations on the route followed are
Al Sabkha, Old Deira Souk, Old Dubai Souk, Bur Dubai and Bani Yas.
The RTA Water Bus is not the same as the 'Wonder Bus' - an amphibious
tourist bus that drives on the roads and the creek.
- Salik rates a mention in the 7 Days 7 Wonders of Dubai list - as
part of the Traffic Wonder.
Monday 09 July 2007 - Salik recharging at petrol stations only
- The Salik website is still not able to recharge Salik accounts but
you can do so at petrol stations, and through Emirates
Bank at branches and online. Not at Dubai Islamic Bank yet as far
as we know, perhaps by the end of the week.
- Gulf News headline about the RTA and Salik this morning said "Telecom
firms in talks for SMS recharge". And then in the same
article said "telecom firms already allow their customers to
recharge their mobile accounts by sending an SMS". Which doesn't
make sense. But they didn't say how, and nobody else knows either.
- The Salik helpline will apparently, after 10-20 minutes, answer
your call according to one resident in Dubai.
Will not, say the other 399,999 salikified residents who hung up
after 9 minutes.
Sunday 08 July 2007 - no cap on Salik tolls for taxis
- An advertisement from Salik seen in the
Gulf News today, said that taxis will not be limited to the 24 dhs
per day cap on toll charges. Which presumably means the RTA will
collect all the extra toll fees the taxi companies thought they would
be able to hang on to once a taxi hit the 24 dhs per day maximum.
- Salik recharge facilities are available at petrol stations and banks
- you need your PIN number to add credit to your Salik account.
- Salik website for online accounts still seems to be struggling to
cope with all the traffic (which is a little ironic when phrased
that way - will we see Salik web tolls introduced one day?), with
users reporting it to be slow to load and respond.
- The Salik password recovery feature on their website is still not
functioning (you're not told until after you try).
- Some residents are also complaining of a noticeable increase
in SMS spam from a variety of UAE companies since supplying Salik
with their mobile numbers.
Saturday 07 July 2007 - no Salik news today
- Almost a week since the introduction of the Salik road toll in Dubai,
and the first Salik-free (relatively) day in the news. What is reported
is a repeat of previous news, and/or a summary of the week.
Friday 06 July 2007 - Salik registration issues and traffic report
- Car rental companies are worried about a build up of fines since they
cannot check the status of Salik accounts while their customers merrily
cruise through the Salik toll gates.
- Confusing reports about whether or not, and where, Salik users can
top up their Salik accounts. Some meBank (an Emirates Bank subsidiary)
customers say they can add credit online, other Salikers say Emirates
Bank and Dubai Islamic Bank don't have the facilities to add credit
yet, and the RTA says you can add credit to your Salik account at
- The RTA again says that Salikers who have not received their SMS
with account details do not need to worry about getting fined for
not having enough credit. But ...
- ... if you have not received your SMS
with account details, it may have been sent to someone else. Some
reports of unSaliked residents receiving an SMS with Salik account
details (obviously not for them). Unknown whether this is due to
a problem with the RTA's system, a data entry error by the Salik
department, or a customer error in filling out the Salik registration
form. With 200,000 Salik tags purchased in three days,
it's not surprising there are errors. One problem is, if you have
not received that text message, how do you know it hasn't been sent
to someone else in error? The Salik helpline is still reported to
- Sharjah traffic report since Salik was introduced is that
traffic has decreased on Ittihad Road but increased on the Emirates Road, Gargash
Road and Caterpillar Road.
- And in the meantime, the buses are collecting more passengers as
drivers give up on navigating Dubai's traffic in their cars and find
another way to avoid paying the Salik toll.
Thursday 05 July 2007 - Salik sending incorrect text messages
- Salik is not on the front page of the news anymore, although
residents are still getting stuck in traffic jams around areas near
the toll gate with the Salik toll avoiders causing overflows on roads
not designed to cope with the increase.
- Some Salikians are reporting text messages informing them their credit
is below 30 dhs after only one toll crossing. Other complaints are
that there are still outlets with no Salik packs, and the Salik helpline
- On the bright side, there are increasing numbers of Salikers happy
with their new traffic-free drive.
Wednesday 04 July 2007 - Salik website problems, too many text messages,
no rental car tags
- Today's rumour is that the Salik toll system only started working
yesterday because some residents say their Salik account doesn't
show toll charges from previous days. Probably another one of those
wishful-thinking kind of rumours.
- Residents waiting for the text message with their Salik account number
and PIN will be pleased to know that the RTA text messaging system
appears to be working very well. Salik users reported a deluge
of SMSs from the RTA from Monday evening until early Tuesday morning
- individuals said they received tens, and in some cases more than
100 text messages, either informing them their credit was
below 30 dhs or saying nothing useful. The RTA's Salik telephone
number was, not surprisingly, busy.
- Many Salikers are saying they are having
difficulties logging in to their Salik accounts at customers.salik.ae.
Make sure the beginning of the URL says https://, not http://, and
use the email address given when registering as the
username to login. You cannot log in to your Salik account unless
you've received an SMS with your PIN number, which is your password.
- Some rental car companies report that they still haven't received
their Salik tags, and that the RTA has for the past few days kept
promising them the Salik tags will arrive "tomorrow". The most
surprising part of this news is that it sounds like the rental car
companies believed that.
- The number of residents happy with the Salik toll system seems to
be increasing. None of them live in Al Barsha or the Greens though,
where residents are still blocked in by Salik avoiders.
Tuesday 03 July 2007 - no Salik tolls at night rumour, no Salik fines
if no sms received
- In a meeting yesterday, organised by the
Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM),
between the RTA and
the Travel and Tourism Group, the RTA apparently said they were considering
the Salik toll charge between 10 pm and 6 am. This was denied
by the RTA today.
- There were reports that the RTA delivered 400,000 Salik tags to sales
outlets yesterday but
press release said they had delivered
a total of 400,000 Salik tags up until yesterday. Maitha
Bin Adai, the CEO of the "RTA's Roads and Transport Authority
department" (isn't that just the RTA?), said
motorists in Dubai had purchased over 200,000 Salik packs in
the three days up until the launch of Salik.
- All the Salik applications appear to require manual processing and
data entry. On the assumption that it takes 5 minutes to enter the
data from one form (which is a bit of a wild guess), we figure that
it would take 11 years for one person working 8 hours non-stop per
day to enter all the data from 400,000 applications. To get the job
done in a week will need about 600 people working the same hours.
Anyone looking for a job? And if there was an data entry error rate of
1%, then there will be 4000 drivers with account problems.
- The RTA has said residents who are Saliked,
but have not yet received an SMS with their account number, will
not be fined for driving through Salik checkpoints without toll credit.
At least, until they receive the account number SMS.
- The traffic chaos seen on Sunday has lessened substantially, with
more Salikified residents (Saliktites?) expressing delight and amazement
at the short journey times from Sharjah and other locations involving
routes on the Sheikh Zayed Road through the Salik toll points. Other
(un-Saliked) residents are saying that the number of complaints has
fallen since they can't be bothered complaining any more.
Monday 02 July 2007 - Salik tags not received by taxis, traffic still
- Some traffic jams again around Dubai this morning except for free-flowing
traffic on SZR and Garhood Bridge but much less chaotic than yesterday.
More traffic on the Salik-tolled roads as those who managed
to find a Salik tag yesterday join the other Salikers (Salikis? Salikians?
Salikans?), which means fewer cars stuck in the traffic jams on other
roads. See the 01 July 2007 news below for more details of badly
companies complained they could not use Salik roads because the
RTA hadn't delivered their Salik stickers yet. The RTA complained
it was the taxi companies fault. Customers complained they couldn't
- Bentley Continental, Aston Martin, and Jaguar
XK series cars are also on the list of cars that need special
instructions for attaching the Salik stickers. The cars are not listed
on the Salik website document but you can get a leaflet at service
stations ... James.
- The RTA said yesterday that
of women working for them had increased to 183 with 26
women in senior positions, which has nothing to do with Salik, but
it may not have been the best time to release that news.
Sunday 01 July 2007 - Salik system in operation from midnight, traffic
chaos and other problems
- The Salik website now has a login page
for registered users at customers.salik.ae where
you can check your fines, view a
list of your trips through Salik toll gates, and top up your Salik
account. For first time login, username is
the email address you gave them when registering, and password is
the PIN number that Salik sent to your mobile phone. You'll be
asked to change your password.
- Despite some residents expecting, or hoping, for a last minute reprieve,
the Salik toll system started up as promised. One driver was waiting
for the midnight start to be the
first violater through the toll
gate according to the Gulf News. Although he had a Salik tag,
he was told it could be 10 days before it would be registered, which
sounds somewhat contrary to information issued by the RTA so
- Emirates Bank said their customers
can recharge Salik accounts through their internet banking service
and meMOBILE SMS service. And anyone can recharge their Salik account
at ATM and CDM machines by the end of the week. They also claimed
they have Salik cards available at their branches, some of which
are open till
8 or 9pm,
there were bound to be long queues.
- As expected, toll-free roads providing alternative
routes were chaotic in the morning, while Garhoud Bridge was relatively
deserted. Business Bay bridge was apparently not too congested. Roads
around the Al Barsha area were clogged with people trying to avoid
the MOTE Salik checkpoint. Al Wasl Road and Jumeirah Beach Road were
reported to be busy but not too congested, except for around
Souk Madinat and Al Sufouh. However
reports are that many more unrelated routes throughout
Dubai were horribly congested. Sounds like a good day to stay at
- A rumour doing the rounds is that none of the cameras are installed
yet and Salik will take effect from 15 July 2007. Another rumour
is that Salik will be dropped on 15 July 2007. These are more likely
to be wishful thinking than rumours of any substance.
- Afternoon update - Traffic congestion during
the evening rush hour with slow trips home from the
office unless you used Garhood Bridge and Sheikh Zayed Road. Some
examples of journey times (not confirmed) without Salik: MOTE to
The Greens - 1 hour, Trade Center to the Airport - 1.5 hours, anywhere
in Al Barsha - all day. And with Salik: Jebel Ali to Deira 30 mins
(on SZR), Deira to SZR 15 mins, Sharjah to Dubai 20 mins, Mirdiff
to DIC/DMC 30 mins.
- Some rental car companies still had not received their Salik tags,
and the RTA said again that it was the rental car companies' fault
for not applying sooner or correctly.
- Many more outlets were reported as having sold out of Salik stickers.
The head of the RTA (Mattar Al Tayer) said they had sold 185,000
Salik tags by yesterday, while another official (Salah Mohammad Al
Marzouqi) said they had sold 160,000 tags. There are 650,000
cars registered in Dubai.
- A deluge of vitriolic messages and phone calls were fired in to
radio stations today, complaining about Salik and especially the
RTA (but we should remember that the general public are not "traffic
experts" according to the head of the RTA). Many messages were from
residents stuck in the new car parks created on some of Dubai's roads.
It wasn't all bad though, a number of residents were delighted at having
much shorter journey times along the SZR.
Saturday 30 June 2007 - Salik tags from ADNOC petrol stations
- The last day of toll-free motoring in Dubai. Expect gas stations to
be busy with the last minute rush to buy Salik tags - if you can
find one. If you can avoid driving anywhere near the Salik toll points
tomorrow, do. Especially the alternative routes, which
people will use to avoid paying the Salik toll charge.
- ADNOC FOD (the blue petrol stations you see in Abu Dhabi
and other emirates except for Dubai) has
been authorised by the RTA to sell and recharge Salik
accounts in Abu Dhabi and the Northern Emirates. The news releases
did not say when Salik cards would be available at ADNOC stations.
- Dubai rates as the most congested city in the Arab world says a
survey by GulfTalent.com, completed amongst 5000 drivers in 14 Middle
Eastern cities during May 2007. Average communting time
per day ranges from 46 minutes in Jeddah to 1 hour 45 minutes in
Dubai. Dubai also ranks at the top of the list for difficulty in
finding a parking space.
Friday 29 June 2007 - motorcycles must use Salik tags
- Hertz, Budget, Diamondlease are reported to have received their Salik
stickers yesterday, Thrifty were expecting them today. In an outstanding
display of responsibility avoidance, the RTA
blamed the companies for the delays, saying they had
applied for their Salik tags incorrectly.
- Press reports today seemed to indicate that yesterday's rumours of
different tags for motorcyclists, were incorrect, with the RTA saying motorcyclists
should stick the Salik tags on the
windscreen if they have one, and in the same way as other motorists
if not. That unhelpful advice should result in many bewildered motorcyclists
scratching their helmets.
tags for some cars need to go in slightly different locations
- reported in the press as though it's a new thing but document has
been available on Salik website for a few days at least.
Thursday 28 June 2007 - taxi windfall from Salik
- Someone figured out that taxis are on a potential
windfall from Salik.
Once they've clocked up 6 crossings in a day, they no longer have
to pay since the maximum charge per day for each vehicle is 24 dhs.
Even if taxis have reached the limit, they'll still charge
passengers the 4 dh Salik toll fee. Taxi companies are saying
they're not looking to make a profit. Er, right. Watch out for
taxi drivers keen to make a detour through a toll gate even if
your intended route wasn't going anywhere near one.
Wednesday 27 June 2007 - Salik teething problems
- More reports of outlets running out
of Salik tags. The RTA says 140,000 have been purchased already
but from the lack of Salik tags displayed on Dubai's
cars so far, you would be forgiven for viewing that figure with a
degree of skepticism. Another 60,000 are being delivered to outlets
are also reports from purchasers that they have not received the
activation code by sms. The RTA says don't worry, the Salik cards
are activated automatically anyway.
- Motorcycles will possibly have different
stickers which will be available in the next few days.
- If you
work for the DCCI (Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry), you're
lucky - they'll provide you with a Salik tag.
cars and Salik update: Avis said they'd provide Salik tags
but charge an extra 25% per toll crossing (5 dhs)
and Hertz said they'd charge 4.50 dhs.
Sunday 24 June 2007 - Salik launch delay rumour
- A Zawya
Dow Jones report claimed that
the RTA was going to meet to discuss and possibly defer the 01 July 2007 start
date for the Salik road toll. But press sources in Dubai asked the
RTA about it and were told that the 01 July start date is confirmed,
and the ZDJ report was just a rumour. The head of the RTA reportedly
said it was "fabricated". Of course, in Dubai, rumours occasionally
turn out to be true.
- Some rental car companies were saying
to ZDJ that they still haven't received their Salik tags yet.
- There are also reports of Dubai residents saying that service stations
have run out of Salik tags.
General Salik information
See the Salik page for background, where to get a Salik tag, how to
avoid the Salik road toll and other Salik related information. This
page will have latest news about Salik road tolls in Dubai, UAE. Or
visit the Salik
Road Toll discussion for more questions, answers and
news. Add your comments, ask your questions.
- See also the Salik
Road Toll discussion to read more, and add your comments or questions.
- Looking for the official Salik website? It's at www.salik.ae.
- Salik account login is at customers.salik.ae (use
your email address the first time).