Dubai Airport DXB

Dubai Airport Guide – Easy Passenger Handbook

Dubai International Airport (DXB) is your gateway to one of the world’s most vibrant and dynamic cities. Dubai Airport, known for its modernity and efficiency, caters to millions of travelers from all corners of the globe.

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned traveler, our travel handbook is your ultimate resource to make the most of your time at Dubai Airport. From visa requirements to navigating the terminals, from baggage rules to exciting shopping and dining options, we have covered it all. This comprehensive guide is carefully crafted to provide you with essential information, insider tips, and helpful services available at DXB.

Start Here: Before your adventure in Dubai begins, it’s essential to check the visa requirements for your nationality. Click below to verify your traveler’s passport needs.

It is essential to adhere to the official and current visa policy of the United Arab Emirates to ensure a clear understanding of the prerequisites for visiting the country before your intend to visit the United Arab Emirates.

Visa policy of the United Arab Emirates

Visa Exemption or Free Visa on Arrival: Nationals of certain countries can either enter the UAE without a visa or obtain a free UAE visa on arrival.

Freedom of Movement (No Visa Required): Citizens of the following countries have freedom of movement and can enter the UAE without a visa: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia.

Visa-Free for Specific Periods: Nationals from the countries listed below can stay in the UAE for the specified duration without a visa:

180 days: Albania, Mexico.

90 days within any 180 days: EU countries (except Ireland), Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Barbados, Belarus, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Georgia, Honduras, Iceland, Israel, Kiribati, Liechtenstein, Maldives, Montenegro, Nauru, Norway, Paraguay, Peru, Russia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, South Korea, Serbia, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Switzerland, Uruguay.

90 days within any 12 months: Brazil.

Visa-Free for 30 Days: Citizens of the countries listed below can stay in the UAE for 30 days without a visa: Andorra, Australia, Brunei, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, Kazakhstan, Macao, Malaysia, Mauritius, Monaco, New Zealand, San Marino, Singapore, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Vatican City.

Applying for a Tourist Visa

If you need a visa to enter the UAE, don’t worry! You can Apply for a UAE Visa Online, which is straightforward. It is recommended to apply for a visa before your arrival to ensure a smooth journey. Check the United Arab Emirates E-visa processing time to make sure you have enough time.

In case you have any visa-related queries at the airport, visit the immigration and visa office in Dubai Airport Terminal 3, arrivals near Entrance 1. The center operates 24/7 to assist travelers with their visa concerns.

Visa Duration and Costs

A typical short-term tourist visa usually lasts for 30 days from the date of entry, while long-term visas are valid for 90 days. The visa cost may vary depending on the type and duration. It’s essential to familiarize yourself with these details and plan accordingly.

Arriving at Dubai Airport

Terminal Information

Dubai International Airport (DXB) is a bustling hub connecting travelers from around the world.

DXB consists of three terminals, each serving different airlines:

  • Terminal 1: Home to many international airlines.
  • Terminal 2: Mainly serves regional and budget airlines.
  • Terminal 3: The largest and handles most international flights.
Map Dubai Airport Terminal 3
Map Dubai Airport Terminal 3

Information of each terminal

Click, to open:

Dubai Airport Terminal 1: Home to Many International Airlines

Dubai Airport Terminal 1 is a bustling hub that serves as the base for more than 60 international airlines, excluding Emirates and Qantas. With its state-of-the-art facilities and efficient services, Terminal 1 can handle over 20 million passengers annually.

Levels of Dubai Airport Terminal 1:

Level 1: Departures

  • Departures: This level houses the check-in counters and the oversized baggage check-in for departing passengers.
  • Services: Passengers can find self-service kiosks, a lounge for unaccompanied minors, special handling services lounges, ticket sales counters, cashier desks, immigration counters, retail areas, food court, and free Wi-Fi (for the first hour).

Level 2: Arrivals

  • Arrivals: This level handles the immigration and customs procedures for arriving passengers.
  • Services: Passengers will find E-gates, baggage services lounges, baggage carousels, porter services, lounges, and arrival kiosks.

Level 3: Services and Concessions

  • This level offers various services, concessions, and amenities to enhance the traveler’s experience.

Concourse D:

  • Concourse D is an extension of Dubai Airport Terminal 1 and can accommodate a staggering 90 million passengers annually.
  • It facilitates over 350 daily services to 90 destinations worldwide.
  • Boarding Gates: The concourse has 23 boarding gates, including 4 code F gates for larger aircraft.
  • Airline Lounges: Concourse D is home to five airline lounges, providing a comfortable and luxurious experience for travelers.
  • Concessions: Travelers can explore numerous food, drink, retail, and other concessions at Concourse D.

Transfer Between Terminals:

  • Dubai Airport Terminal 1 is connected to Concourse D by the airport train, an automated people mover that allows seamless movement between the two areas.
  • Terminal 1 and Terminal 3 are connected through a transit area, allowing passengers to move freely after clearing security.
  • Terminal 1 is connected to Terminal 3 by the metro, providing a convenient mode of transportation between the two terminals.

Services and Facilities at Dubai Airport Terminal 1:

  • Restaurants and Cafeterias: A wide selection of dining options catering to various tastes and cuisines.
  • Currency Exchange Offices: Convenient facilities for currency exchange and foreign transactions.
  • ATMs and Banking: Multiple ATMs and banking services to meet financial needs.
  • Car Rental Companies: Travelers can rent cars from various reputable agencies for their transportation needs.
  • Parking Lots: Ample parking spaces for those arriving at the airport by private vehicles.
  • Transportation Access: Easy access to taxis, buses, and the Dubai Metro for further travel.
  • Business Centre: Facilities for business travelers, including meeting rooms and workstations.
  • Children’s Play Area: A dedicated play area for children to let off some steam and have fun.
  • Baby Care Rooms: Specialized rooms for parents to attend to their infants’ needs in comfort and privacy.

Dubai Airport Terminal 1 ensures a smooth and enjoyable experience for travelers, with its comprehensive range of services, modern facilities, and convenient connectivity options. Whether you are arriving in Dubai or departing to your next destination, Terminal 1 aims to make your journey pleasant and memorable.

Dubai Airport Terminal 2: Where Convenience Meets Affordability

Dubai Airport Terminal 2 serves as a hub for scheduled, charter, and special interest flights, especially during special occasions. Approximately 50 airlines operate out of this terminal, making it an important gateway for various travel options.

Location and Capacity:

  • Terminal 2 is located in the north of Terminal 1, accessible from Al-Twar road and Rashidiya.
  • It has a capacity to handle up to 5 million passengers annually.

Levels of Dubai Airport Terminal 2:

First Level: Arrivals

  • This level caters to arriving passengers, handling immigration and baggage claim services.

Second Level: Boarding

  • Boarding Gates: Terminal 2 features 6 boarding gates and remote stands for aircraft.
  • Boarding Lounges: Passengers can access boarding lounges for a comfortable pre-flight experience.
  • Transfer Areas: Transfer desks are available for travelers with connecting flights.
  • Business Class Lounge: Business class passengers can enjoy dedicated lounge facilities.
  • Retail Areas and Food Courts: There are retail spaces and food outlets offering a variety of options for shopping and dining.

Third Level: Departures

  • Check-in Counters: This level houses check-in counters for departing passengers.
  • Staff & Crew Counter: A dedicated area for airline staff and crew members.
  • Special Handling Services Lounges: Lounges offering special services for specific passenger needs.
  • VIP Lounges: VIP passengers have access to exclusive lounges for added comfort.
  • Ticket Sales Lounges and Cashier Desks: Facilities for purchasing tickets and managing travel arrangements.
  • Immigration Counters: Immigration services for departing travelers.

Fourth Level: Arrivals

  • Similar to the first level, this level handles arriving passengers with immigration and baggage services.

Transfer Between Terminals:

  • Transfer between Terminal 1 and Terminal 3 typically takes 15-25 minutes.
  • Shuttle buses operate 24/7, connecting all Dubai Airport terminals for convenient inter-terminal transfers.

Services and Facilities at Dubai Airport Terminal 2:

  • Currency Exchange Offices: Convenient facilities for currency exchange and financial services.
  • ATMs and Banking: Multiple ATMs and banking options available for passengers.
  • Parking Lots: Ample parking spaces for travelers arriving at the airport by car.
  • Restaurants and Cafeterias: A variety of dining options catering to different tastes.
  • Car Rental Companies: Various car rental agencies provide transportation solutions.
  • Transportation Access: Access to taxis, buses, and the Dubai Metro for further travel.
  • Business Centre: Facilities catering to business travelers’ needs.

Dubai Airport Terminal 2 offers a blend of convenience and affordability, making it a preferred choice for budget travelers and those seeking a smooth travel experience. With its range of services, modern amenities, and ease of connectivity, Terminal 2 ensures a pleasant journey for all passengers passing through its gates.

Dubai Airport Terminal 3: The Iconic Hub of Emirates Airlines

Dubai Airport Terminal 3 stands as an impressive structure and serves as the primary terminal for Emirates Airlines, one of the world’s leading carriers. With its vast size of over 1,713,000 sq ft, Terminal 3 ranks among the largest terminal buildings globally and boasts the capacity to handle a staggering 60 million passengers annually.

Levels of Dubai Airport Terminal 3:

First Level: Arrivals

  • Baggage Carousels: This level houses baggage claim carousels for arriving passengers.
  • Baggage Services Lounges: Lounges catering to baggage-related services and inquiries.
  • Porter Service: Assistance for passengers with their luggage.
  • Unaccompanied Minors Lounges: Dedicated lounges for unaccompanied minors.
  • Special Handling: Services for passengers with specific needs.
  • Customer Services (Baggage): Assistance and information regarding baggage services.
  • Information Counter: A central point for passenger inquiries and assistance.
  • Medical Clinic: A medical facility for any health-related needs.
  • Hotel Reservation: Services for hotel bookings.
  • Rental Car Desks: Car rental services for passenger convenience.
  • Access to Transportation: Convenient access to taxis, buses, and the Dubai Metro.

Second Level: Boarding

  • Boarding Lounges: Passengers proceed to boarding lounges on this level.
  • Pre-Boarding Amenities: Amenities such as TVs, refreshments, and video games to keep passengers entertained before boarding.
  • Retail Area: A wide retail space for shopping options.
  • Food Court: A vast food court offering various dining choices.

Third Level: Departures

  • Check-in Counters: This level houses 126 check-in counters for departing passengers.
  • Oversized Baggage Check-in: Facilities for oversized baggage.
  • Self-Service Kiosks: Self-service check-in kiosks for faster processing.
  • Lounge for Unaccompanied Minors: A dedicated lounge for unaccompanied minors.
  • Ticket Sale Counters: Counters for ticket purchases and travel arrangements.
  • Immigration Counters: Immigration services for departing travelers.
  • Cashier Desks: Facilities for financial transactions and payments.

Fourth Level: Arrivals

  • Similar to the first level, this level handles arriving passengers with baggage claim and other services.

Concourses at Terminal 3:

  • Terminal 3 consists of three concourses: Concourse A, Concourse B, and Concourse C.
  • Concourse A: Specifically designed for A380 aircraft, increasing the airport’s capacity to 75 million passengers per year.
  • Concourse B and Concourse C: Concourse C became part of Terminal 3 complex in 2016 when Dubai Airport’s Concourse D began hosting 60 international airlines.

Transfer Between Terminals:

  • Terminal 3 and Terminal 1 are connected through a transit area, allowing passengers to move freely after clearing security.
  • Terminal 3 is also connected to Terminal 1 via the Dubai Metro and shuttle buses are available to connect all terminals 24/7.

Services and Facilities at Dubai Airport Terminal 3:

  • ATMs and Banking: Multiple ATMs and banking services for passengers’ financial needs.
  • Transportation Access: Access to taxis, buses, and the Dubai Metro for further travel.
  • Restaurants and Cafeterias: A wide variety of dining options catering to different tastes.
  • Currency Exchange Offices: Convenient facilities for currency exchange and foreign transactions.
  • Car Rental Companies: Various car rental agencies providing transportation solutions.
  • Parking Lots: Ample parking spaces for travelers arriving by car.
  • Business Centre: Facilities catering to business travelers’ needs.
  • Children’s Play Area: A dedicated play area for children to have fun and stay entertained.
  • Baby Care Rooms: Specialized rooms for parents to attend to their infants’ needs in comfort and privacy.
  • Baggage Storage: Facilities to store baggage for short periods.
  • Prayer Rooms: Dedicated prayer rooms for passengers of different faiths.
  • Wi-Fi Access: Complimentary Wi-Fi for passengers to stay connected.
  • Dubai International Hotel: Hotel facilities available within Terminal 3 for passengers seeking accommodation during layovers.
  • Airport Medical Center: Medical facilities for any health-related concerns or emergencies.

Dubai Airport Terminal 3 stands as a symbol of efficiency, comfort, and modernity, providing an exceptional experience to travelers, particularly those flying with Emirates Airlines. With its array of services, amenities, and world-class facilities, Terminal 3 aims to make every passenger’s journey through Dubai a pleasant and memorable one.

Transportation Options at DBX

DXB airport is well-connected to the city via taxis, buses, and the Dubai Metro. The metro station is easily accessible from Terminal 3 and provides a convenient way to explore the city if you have a few hours between flights.

Remember to check your layover time and flight details to ensure you have enough time to enjoy the airport’s amenities and activities without any rush. Dubai International Airport strives to make your travel experience smooth and enjoyable, leaving you with fond memories of your time in Dubai. Safe travels!

After landing at DXB, you’ll have various transportation options to reach your destination:

1. Taxi: Conveniently located outside the terminals, taxis offer a quick and direct way to travel to your accommodation. You can pre-book or flag one down on the spot. Uber works fine in Dubai, and it is very convenient for international visitors. Reserve a ride with Uber in advance at Dubai International Airport.

2. Metro: If you prefer public transport, the Dubai Metro operates between Terminals 1 and 3, running every 10 minutes. It’s a cost-effective option for getting around the city.

3. Bus: Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) operates the Dubai Bus that connects the airport to various parts of the city. You can plan your journey and check routes and timings on the RTA website.

4. Car Rental: For more freedom and flexibility during your stay, consider renting a car from the airport. Numerous car rental agencies are available, offering a wide range of vehicles to suit your needs.

5. Private Tour Package: RJ Travel, as a UAE-registered company, all our tours in the UAE start at Dubai International Airport and include Airport Transfers, Desert Safaris, Luxury Hotels, and Day Trips with drivers. Arrive in Dubai during the evening, where our Airport Meet & Greet service welcomes you. Enjoy a seamless transfer to your hotel in Dubai, anticipating the journey that awaits.

Dubai International Airport is well-connected to the city, ensuring a smooth transition from the airport to your desired destination. Whether you’re here for leisure or business, Dubai has something exciting in store for everyone.

Baggage Rules and Tips

Packing Guidelines

Packing for your trip is an important aspect of smooth air travel. To avoid any unnecessary delays or inconveniences at Dubai International Airport, keep in mind the following guidelines:

  • Ensure your bags have at least one flat surface as per the new baggage rules at DXB.
  • If carrying liquids, aerosols, or gels in your hand baggage, place them in a clear, resealable plastic bag. Each item should not exceed 100ml, and the total volume should not exceed one liter. Exemptions apply for medications, baby milk/foods, and special dietary requirements to be used during your trip.

Baggage Allowances and Oversized Baggage

Most international travelers are allowed up to two pieces of baggage, with a total weight not exceeding 32kg. However, baggage allowances may vary depending on the airline and fare type. It’s advisable to check with your airline before you fly to avoid any surprises.

For oversized baggage that exceeds 90cm in length, 75cm in height, or 60cm in width, check-in at the oversized baggage counter is required. Plan ahead and allow extra time for this process.

Baggage Wrapping and Storage

At DXB, you can avail of baggage wrapping services at the check-in areas. It’s a good idea to weigh your bags before wrapping to avoid delays at the check-in counter. For short-term storage, terminals 1 and 3 offer this service 24/7. Please note that it is not available at terminal 2.

Services at Dubai International Airport

Wi-Fi and Internet Access

It is very important to stay connected while traveling, so Dubai Airports ensures you have access to reliable Wi-Fi throughout your journey. Having access to Wi-Fi enables you to make the most of your time at the airport, whether it’s catching up on work, sharing travel memories, or simply staying entertained.

DXB Airport WIFI: Enjoy unlimited, high-speed Wi-Fi by connecting to the “DXB Free Wifi” network. Stay in touch with your loved ones, check important emails, or simply browse the web while waiting for your flight.

Restaurants and Shops

Dubai Airport DXB is not just a transportation hub; it’s a destination in itself. Indulge in a delightful culinary experience and discover a wide array of dining options to suit every taste and craving. From local delicacies to international cuisine, all restaurants and food outlets cater to diverse palates.

Whether you want to savor traditional Emirati dishes or sample flavors from around the world, DXB has something for everyone. Treat yourself to gourmet meals at upscale eateries, grab a quick bite at casual cafes, or simply relax with a cup of coffee at cozy lounges.

After a satisfying meal, embark on a shopping spree through the airport retail wonderland. From luxury boutiques to global brands, you’ll find a wealth of shopping opportunities at DXB. Explore the duty-free shops for exclusive deals on perfumes, cosmetics, electronics, and more. Souvenir hunters will be delighted by a variety of local crafts and mementos to take home.


DXB features numerous lounges catering to both economy and business/first-class passengers. These lounges provide a serene atmosphere to relax, work, or freshen up between flights. Access can be granted through airline loyalty programs, class of travel, or paid access.

Porters and Trolleys

Arriving or departing, porters are available to assist with your luggage at DXB. If you’re departing from Terminal 3, you can find porters at the entrance. For arrivals at Terminal 3, they are located near the baggage reclaim carousels. Please pay the fixed cost of AED 40 directly to the porter for regular trolley assistance. If you require a family-sized trolley, the cost is AED 100.

Free trolleys are conveniently provided at various locations across the airport, making it easy to transport your belongings without hassle.

Baggage Delivery Service

Emirates Airlines offers a convenient baggage delivery service within the UAE. To avail this service, visit the baggage counter in the Arrivals hall of Terminal 3, near Exit 1. The cost for delivering up to four bags within certain locations in the UAE ranges from AED 200 to AED 250, with each additional bag costing AED 10.

Medical Facilities and Assistance

At DXB, a world-class medical facilities and response teams are available 24/7 to assist you in case of any medical emergencies. If you need medical assistance, approach any of the airports May I Help You team or call the designated clinic numbers:

  • Terminal 1 Clinic: Located below Gate C13 or Fox 7.
  • Terminal 3 Clinic: Located between Fox 22 – 23 at level 0 (Ground Floor).

Special Assistance for People of Determination (POD)

Inclusive Facilities for Guests with Disabilities

Dubai Airport (DXB) is dedicated to providing a seamless and inclusive experience for all travelers, including People of Determination (POD). As directed by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, guests with disabilities are known as ‘People of Determination‘ in the UAE.

The airport is designed with inclusive facilities to ensure that guests with limited mobility, visual impairments, hearing impairments, and hidden disabilities can travel comfortably and with ease. From parking to boarding gates, elevators to restrooms, every touchpoint is designed with spatial considerations to accommodate the needs of all passengers.

If you require special assistance during your journey, their dedicated team of Guest Experience Ambassadors is here to support you. They are readily available to provide guidance, assistance, and personalized care throughout your airport experience.

To further enhance accessibility, DXB features Smart Gates for UAE residents, allowing seamless passport control without scanning documents. Additionally, guests with physical impairments can request assistance with porters available at entrances, departures, and after Passport Control at arrivals.

Security Tips and Customs Rules

Ensuring Smooth Airport Security Checks

Ensuring the safety and security of all travelers is of utmost importance at Dubai Airport (DXB). While they strive to make the security process as efficient as possible, they kindly ask for your cooperation to ensure a smooth and hassle-free journey.

Here are some essential security tips to keep in mind:

  1. Place Loose Items in Hand Baggage: Before approaching the security checkpoint, place items like mobile phones, wallets, watches, and keys in your hand baggage. This will help expedite the screening process.
  2. Laptop and Electronics: Keep your laptop and other large electronics easily accessible, as they will need to be placed in a separate security tray for screening.
  3. Remove Metal Buckles and Heeled Shoes: If your belt has a metal buckle or your shoes have heels, take them off and place them in a security tray for inspection.
  4. Liquid Containers: All liquid containers must be placed in a clear, resealable plastic bag within your hand baggage. Each container should not exceed 100ml, except for essential medication, baby milk, and special dietary requirements.
  5. Prohibited Items: Make sure you are not carrying any prohibited items in your hand luggage. Familiarize yourself with the list of restricted items to avoid any complications during security checks.

Adhering to Customs Regulations

As you arrive in Dubai, it’s essential to adhere to customs regulations to ensure a seamless entry into the UAE. Here are some guidelines to follow:

  1. Declare Restricted Items: If you are unsure about any items in your possession, declare them at customs upon arrival. Certain items, such as narcotics, gambling tools, and offensive materials, are strictly prohibited.
  2. Respect Islamic Culture: Dubai follows Islamic customs and traditions. Please avoid bringing any printed materials or items that contradict Islamic teachings or decency.
  3. Check Visa Requirements: Ensure you have the necessary visa documentation for your stay in the UAE. All visitors require a visa unless they are from visa-exempt countries.
  4. Entry Requirements for Items: Some items, such as pets, certain foods, and plants, have specific entry requirements. Familiarize yourself with these regulations to avoid any issues.

Lost and Found

Handling Lost Luggage Within the Airport

At Dubai Airport (DXB), they understand that losing your luggage can be distressing. If you find yourself in such a situation, rest assured that their dedicated Lost and Found team is here to assist you in locating and retrieving your belongings.

Here’s what to do if you lose your luggage at DXB:

  1. Report Lost Luggage: If you notice that your luggage is missing upon arrival, proceed immediately to the Lost and Found office at the airport. Their helpful staff will guide you through the necessary procedures.
  2. Provide Details: Be ready to provide detailed information about your lost luggage, such as the color, size, brand, and any unique identifiers that will help us locate it efficiently.
  3. Keep Your Documents: Keep your baggage tags, boarding pass, and any other relevant documents safe, as they will be essential for the retrieval process.
  4. Stay in Contact: The Lost and Found team will stay in contact with you throughout the search process. They will try to reunite you with your belongings as quickly as possible.

Important Contact Information

In the unfortunate event of lost luggage, please reach out to the following contact numbers for immediate assistance:

Terminal 1 and 2: +971 (0)4 216 1999

Terminal 3: +971 (0)4 504 5007

Before You Go

As you’ve reached the end of our comprehensive Dubai Airport Guide, we hope you now feel well-prepared and informed for your journey. Dubai Airport is more than just a transit point; it’s an experience of its own.

Remember these key takeaways for a seamless travel experience:

  1. UAE Visa Requirements: Ensure you have the necessary visa for your travel to Dubai. GCC nationals enjoy freedom of movement, while others may need to apply for a visa in advance.
  2. Dubai Airport Terminal Information: Familiarize yourself with the three terminals at DXB and their respective airlines to navigate smoothly.
  3. Baggage Rules and Tips: Pack wisely, adhere to baggage rules, and take advantage of helpful services like baggage wrapping and storage.
  4. Wi-Fi and Internet Access: Enjoy unlimited, free, high-speed Wi-Fi at both DXB and DWC to stay connected throughout your journey.
  5. Security Tips and Customs Rules: Prepare for security checks by following our tips and respect customs regulations to have a trouble-free entry into Dubai.
  6. Special Assistance: Dubai Airport is committed to inclusivity and provides services for travelers with disabilities.
  7. Lost and Found: In case of lost luggage, report immediately to the Lost and Found office for prompt assistance.

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