Best way to pay for things in Dubai?

Emanef
Emanef Posts: 165
First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
Forumite
Hi guys

We're off to Dubai for a week in a couple of weeks and I'm just trying to work out the best way to pay for things out there. 

We have around £80 in AED that we'll take so that should cover us for cash, but how best to pay for most things on card/contactless? 

We have debit cards with HSBC, First Direct, Santander, Revolut and Monza and also a Halifax Clarity Credit card. Which would be the best to use for purchases and also taking out cash if we do need to get some? 

We lived out there for a few years so know that most things can be paid with card/contactless, but it's been nearly 8 years so I'm completely out of touch with charges, converting, etc!

Thanks!

Comments

  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,776
    First Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic First Post
    Forumite
    Emanef said:
    We have debit cards with HSBC, First Direct, Santander, Revolut and Monza and also a Halifax Clarity Credit card. Which would be the best to use for purchases and also taking out cash if we do need to get some? 
    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/credit-cards/travel-credit-cards/ summarises the market - the Clarity or FD debit will probably be best, but Santander might also be good if it's a Zero card....
  • saajan_12
    saajan_12 Posts: 3,564
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post Combo Breaker
    Forumite
    What you do you plan on doing out there (or at least what will you be spending money on)? 
    If hotels, restaurants, tourist attraction tickets, car hire, metro that can all be paid by card / contactless. 

    There might be some souks that prefer cash, but all the ones I've been to took card still. 
  • Emanef
    Emanef Posts: 165
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Forumite
    eskbanker said:
    Emanef said:
    We have debit cards with HSBC, First Direct, Santander, Revolut and Monza and also a Halifax Clarity Credit card. Which would be the best to use for purchases and also taking out cash if we do need to get some? 
    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/credit-cards/travel-credit-cards/ summarises the market - the Clarity or FD debit will probably be best, but Santander might also be good if it's a Zero card....
    Thanks, that's great, I hadn't seen that, that's a really useful tool! 

    I'm surprised that First Direct is one of the best, very good to hear though! Our Santander is a 123 Lite, not sure what that is, but looks like the First Direct is the one to use. 

    Yeah, it'll mostly be paying on contactless, I never spend much in souks so the cash we have should be more than enough!

    Thanks guys! 
  • Emanef
    Emanef Posts: 165
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Forumite
    I don't suppose anyone knows how best to use your mobile out in Dubai do they? You used to be able to get a PAYG sim from any shop but I recall them being a lot stricter before we moved back and you needed to have ID, proof of residency, etc to do it. We're both on Vodafone contracts and it looks like its nearly £7 a day, so 9 days will cost a bit for both of us!
  • eDicky
    eDicky Posts: 6,521
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    Forumite
    If any of your old mates are around they might be able to get a SIM for you, if using WiFi and WhatsApp etc will not be sufficient.
    Evolution, not revolution
Meet your Ambassadors

Categories

  • All Categories
  • 341.6K Banking & Borrowing
  • 249.6K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449.1K Spending & Discounts
  • 233.7K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 605.8K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 172.3K Life & Family
  • 246.4K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.8K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards