The complete guide to vehicle fines in the UAE

vehicle fines in Dubai

Vehicle Fines in UAE

It’s no secret that the UAE is home to some of the world’s most fast, exotic, and expensive cars. With a population of nearly 9.5 million, this small country nestled in the Gulf has an estimated ratio of two vehicles for every person.

The fines and regulations applying to drivers in the UAE make the streets a playground for some and a nightmare for others.

Besides its explosive car market, the UAE is reputable for its autobahn attitude with its straight-shot desert highways with speed limits of 120km/h besides an extra 20km grace period. Although these outer-city highways have generous speed limits, drivers regularly exceed them with little regard to the following fines. In the country’s capital city Abu Dhabi, 4,775 cars were seized for speeding over 200km/h in 2014 alone. If the police miss you, don’t worry, the speeding cameras will.

However, the UAE speeding fines aren’t too hefty compared to those in western countries’ home to many ex-pats living in the country. In the UAE, you can exceed the maximum speed limit by more than 60km/h and only receive a 1000AED ($272) fine besides impounding your vehicle for 30 days. You won’t be facing any jail time, driver’s license suspension, or revocation if it’s your first offense.

It isn’t speeding that will get you in hot water in the UAE; it’s a hot temper that will. You are more liable for your traffic etiquette than reckless driving that endangers yourself and others on the road. Responding to the jerk that just cut you off or the person tailgating your car by throwing up a middle finger could land you in jail for up to one month.

Reckless driving isn’t all about speeding and running red lights, though. Applying make-up while driving was categorized as dangerous driving behavior last year, carrying a fine more offensive than the dark bags under your eyes – 1000AED ($272) with the possibility of impoundment. But then again, you could always try to outrun the traffic police officer and settle for an 800AED fine.

As ex-pats continue to move in and out of the UAE, they buy cars and sell them into the US $2.5 billion used car market at a high turnover rate. With about 19 million registered vehicles in the country, UAE representatives have voiced their concerns about pushing for more public transportation options.

They introduced the tram in 2014, paired with some hefty traffic fines to protect their new multi-million dollar transport system. When you think of trams, traffic violations probably aren’t the first thing that comes to mind. But in the first four opening months of the tram, over 1,400 traffic violations involving the tram were committed. To decrease the violations, we introduced new traffic fines that make running a red light cost you anywhere from 5,000 AED ($1361) to 30,000AED ($8168) depending on damage and injuries induced.

While running red lights, speeding, and reckless behavior on the road are fine-worthy actions, others are flat-out merciless. There is nothing more frustrating than running out of gas on the road, other than getting a 200AED ($54) fine for running out of gas. But be especially careful if your car is “noisy,” that’s going to be an extra 500AED ($136).