If you're planning to rent a car in the United Arab Emirates, you're in for a treat as you drive through this awe-inspiring country. This article is your guide to understanding the toll road system and the quality of the roads in the UAE.

Quality of Roads in the United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates boasts some of the best quality roads in the region, making for a smooth driving experience. The road infrastructure is well-maintained and continually being improved. There is no vignette system in the UAE; instead, the country relies on a toll road system known as Salik to fund its road maintenance.

Toll Roads and Fees in the United Arab Emirates

There are several major highways in the UAE with toll gates, managed by the Salik system. To use these roads, you'll need to purchase a Salik tag for your vehicle, which you can find at most petrol stations and authorized retail outlets. The tag will be linked to your vehicle, and the toll fee will be deducted automatically as you pass through the gates. Here are some of the main toll roads:

  • Sheikh Zayed Road (E11): This highway runs through Dubai and Abu Dhabi and connects the two major cities. Toll fee: AED 4 (approx. €0.95) per gate.
  • Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Road (E12): This route connects the mainland of Abu Dhabi to the Saadiyat and Yas Islands. Toll fee: AED 4 (approx. €0.95) per gate.
  • Al Ittihad Road (E11): This highway connects Dubai and Sharjah. Toll fee: AED 4 (approx. €0.95) per gate.
  • Al Khail Road (E44): This highway runs parallel to Sheikh Zayed Road and serves as an alternative route for commuters in Dubai. Toll fee: AED 4 (approx. €0.95) per gate.

You can pay for the Salik tag and top up your account online, via a smartphone app, or at authorized retail outlets.

Car Ferries in the United Arab Emirates

While the UAE is primarily a desert nation, it does have a few car ferry services available. One popular option is the ferry connecting Sharjah to Abu Hamour island. The ferry operates daily, and fees are as follows:

  • Passenger vehicles: AED 20 (approx. €4.75)
  • Light trucks: AED 40 (approx. €9.50)
  • Heavy trucks: AED 60 (approx. €14.25)

Make sure to arrive early to secure a spot on the ferry, as space is limited.