Safety in Dubai
Dubai is often hailed for its impeccable safety record and the accompanying life of luxury expats can enjoy with no fear of crime. In contrast to other highly populated cities, Dubai has a high standard of safety, and violent crime is extremely rare, but petty crimes do occur and normal precautions should be taken.
Crime in Dubai
Burglaries can and do occur, especially during the summer months when many expat families return to their home countries, leaving houses vacant. On the other hand, it is considered safe to walk around late at night and to take taxis independently.
Women on their own are not considered to be targets or at risk. However, female expats should ensure that they dress modestly as there have been occasional reports of women being harassed; they should avoid travelling alone late at night.
The penalties for breaking laws in Dubai are severe and expats should familiarise themselves with local laws and customs in order to avoid attracting unwanted attention or being punished for behaviour that may not be considered to be offensive back home.
Terrorism in Dubai
Dubai does not have a high threat of terrorism, although some governments have warned of the possibility of extremist attacks in the UAE due to its proximity to other vulnerable countries in the Middle East and its large Western expat community.
Protests in Dubai
The UAE was largely unaffected by the Arab Spring of 2011. Dubai’s wealth and the high standard of living enjoyed by all means that there is not much economic and social dissent against the government and protests and public demonstrations are generally rare.
Road safety in Dubai
Road safety in Dubai is a major concern. Driving is not for the faint-hearted and the emirate has one of the highest road death tolls in the world. Every day there are reports of serious, often fatal, accidents on the highways. Although there are financial penalties for dangerous driving and speeding, they are well within most people's financial means and therefore do not provide a successful deterrent.
Those involved in a traffic collision, however minor, are required by law to contact the police immediately and stay with the vehicle until they arrive. Dubai operates a zero-tolerance policy with regard to drinking and driving. There is no such thing as a ‘legal limit’ and drinking and driving offences are punishable by at least a month in jail.