How to Travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi

How to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi - a personalized recommendation cover image

There are several ways to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi. But what is the best transportation option for you? We created a tool that will tell you the best way to get from Dubai to Abu Dhabi based on your personal preferences. Just answer the four questions below and we will tell you your ideal travel mode between Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Or click here for an overview of the best options to travel between the cities in the UAE.

How to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi - A personalized recommendation

Answer the following four questions and we will tell you the perfect way for you to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi - based on your personal travel profile!

Do you have an Etihad Airways or Emirates Airlines flight on the day you want to travel between Dubai and Abu Dhabi?

Yes
No

Do you want to do a day trip from Dubai to Abu Dhabi or just travel one way?

Yes, I want to do a day trip
Just one way

How many people are you?

1
2
3
4 or more

What is more important to you?

Price
Convenience/Speed

All 4 questions completed!


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Traveling from Dubai to Abu Dhabi in connection with a plane ticket? You may be eligible for the free Etihad Airways or Emirates Shuttle Service
Dubai to Abu Dhabi by public bus
Dubai to Abu Dhabi by taxi
Dubai to Abu Dhabi with a rental car
Dubai to Abu Dhabi by plane
Dubai to Abu Dhabi with the hyperloop?

Are you still undecided where to stay in Dubai? Check out our helpful tool that will help you decide which area to stay in Dubai is best for you!

Etihad Airways or Emirates Coach Service

In case you are arriving or departing with an Emirates or Etihad Airways economy class ticket on the day you want to travel between Dubai and Abu Dhabi, you are in luck. Both airlines offer a free shuttle service between the two cities. If you are traveling in business or first class with either of the two airlines, you can use a complimentary limousine service from Dubai to Abu Dhabi.

Emirates Shuttle Service

Cost: Free (in connection with an Emirates ticket for that day)
Route: Dubai Airport to Abu Dhabi Corniche
Travel Time: 2:15h

The Emirates Shuttle service runs between Dubai International Airport Terminal 3 to Abu Dhabi Corniche. As of April 2019, the Emirates shuttle runs five times a day: 2am, 7:15am, 10am, 3pm and 11pm. The Emirates bus needs to be booked at least 48 hours in advance. You can find more information here on the Emirates website.

Etihad Shuttle Service

Cost: Free (in connection with an Etihad Airways ticket for that day)
Route: Mazaya Centre in Downtown Dubai to Abu Dhabi Airport
Travel Time: 1:15h

The Etihad Airways Coach Service runs from Mazaya Centre in Dubai Downtown to Abu Dhabi Airport. The free shuttle is a good option if you need to travel between Dubai and Abu Dhabi airport. It is less ideal if you need to go to Abu Dhabi downtown since you will need an additional taxi ride from the airport to the city. The Etihad shuttle runs 10 times a day and can be booked online through this link.

Visiting Dubai only for a short time period? Check out our perfect itinerary to spend one day in Dubai here.

Sheik Zayed Mosque is one of the main sights on a day trip from Dubai to Abu Dhabi
Sheik Zayed Grand Mosque – a must-see for every visit to the United Arab Emirates

Travel by Public Bus from Dubai to Abu Dhabi

Cost: 25 AED (about 7 USD)
Route: Ibn Battuta Metro Station or Al Ghubaiba Bus Station to Abu Dhabi Central
Travel Time: Between 1:37h (line E101) and 2:10h (line E100)

There are two bus routes that connect Dubai with Abu Dhabi. The E100 line runs from Al Ghubaiba Bus Station in Eastern Dubai a few minutes from Dubai Creek. The E101 line departs Ibn Battuta Metro Station. If you aren’t located somewhere around Dubai Creek, I would recommend you to take to metro to Ibn Battuta and then continue with bus line E101 to Abu Dhabi downtown. Line E100 first has to run through Dubai proper and get stuck in traffic while Ibn Battuta is located closer to Abu Dhabi and will allow you to skip Dubai traffic.

Tickets for both routes are 25 AED (around 7 USD) which makes the bus the cheapest transportation between Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Tickets can be purchased at the station. Make sure to bring some cash as it is not possible to pay the ticket at Ibn Battuta by credit card (as of early 2019). Both bus lines run quite frequently. You can find the Dubai to Abu Dhabi bus timings 2019 on the official website of the Dubai Road & Transport Authority

Bus line E100 connects Dubai Creek to Abu Dhabi
Bus E100 leaves at Al Ghubaiba bus station right behind Dubai Creek

Ride by Taxi from Dubai to Abu Dhabi

  • Cost: around 250 AED (about 68 USD)
  • Route: Up to you
  • Travel Time: 1:10h

The distance from Dubai to Abu Dhabi is around 130km (80 miles) – depending on your starting point and your destination, it may be more or less. Thanks to the affordable taxi prices in the UAE, a taxi ride between Dubai and Abu Dhabi or vice-versa is absolutely affordable. The Dubai to Abu Dhabi taxi fare is around 70 USD and the ride takes a bit more than an hour. Both price and the Dubai to Abu Dhabi travel time may vary with the traffic in both cities.

Since there are so many taxis driving around in Dubai, this is the most convenient way to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi. All you need to do is hail down a random cab and you will be on your way. Especially if you are several people who want to travel, the taxi ride doesn’t cost much more than a bus but is much more comfortable. You can also reserve your taxi before traveling on the official Dubai taxi website.

Uber is also available in Dubai and you can use it to travel to Abu Dhabi – however, prices are a little higher than the normal taxi fares.

A taxi is the most convenient and fastest way to travel between Dubai and Abu Dhabi

Rent a car to travel between Dubai and Abu Dhabi

Cost: Around 70 USD including fuel and toll
Route: Up to you
Travel Time: 1:10h

If you want to be independent and want to make a few stops on the way, you can also use a rental car to make the transfer between Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Renting a car in Dubai and returning it in Abu Dhabi can cost around 60 USD for one day.

So if you just want to make the journey, a taxi ride may be more comfortable for about the same price. There aren’t too many points of interested on the road between the two cities that would be worth a visit. If you plan to rent a car anyways, you can consider dropping it off in Abu Dhabi. Depending on traffic, you should be able to make the Abu Dhabi Dubai route and vice versa in a bit more than an hour.

Abu Dhabi Day Trip from Dubai

If you plan to visit Abu Dhabi from Dubai and return the same day, booking a Dubai to Abu Dhabi tour is a good option. You can choose between full-day and half day Abu Dhabi tours from Dubai. The five hour half-day tour visits the Sheik Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. The full day tour from Dubai to Abu Dhabi takes around 8-9 hours. It makes additional stops at the Emirates Palace, the Etihad Towers and the Corniche. While the Sheik Zayed Mosque is definitely the highlight of Abu Dhabi, I would recommend you to do the full day tour so you can also visit the other sights of Abu Dhabi.

Prices for half-day tours start at 55 USD and prices for full day tours start at 70 USD. Both tours include a pickup and drop-off at your hotel in Dubai. Click on the links to check the current prices.

Dubai to Abu Dhabi Flight

Getting from Dubai to Abu Dhabi by plane is not possible anymore – at least not with a scheduled flight. Up until a few years ago, the now defunct airline Rotana Jet operated flights from Dubai International Airport (DXB) to Abu Dhabi Al Bateen Executive Airport right next to Sheikh Zayed Mosque.

While the plane isn’t really the fastest option to travel between Dubai and Abu Dhabi, it is definitely the most scenic option. The time I was taking the flight we had incredible views of the skyline in Dubai, Burj Khalifa, Burj al Arab. As well as the artificial palms and islands in Dubai Marina. The landing in Abu Dhabi was similarly fascinating with the impressive mosque right to the left of the landing strip. The fact that we were only two passengers on the flight helped to make it feel even more like a private jet flight (no wonder the airline didn’t make it, though). The best Dubai – Abu Dhabi transport I could imagine.

Today, you can book tours to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi with a seaplane. Prices start at 450 USD for the return flight including guide and tour of Abu Dhabi.

Travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi
A flight from Dubai to Abu Dhabi offers some incredible views.

Dubai to Abu Dhabi Hyperloop

In the future, the route between Dubai and Abu Dhabi will be connected with the world’s first hyperloop route. The new technology will allow travel at a speed of 1,123km/h which will reduce the travel time to 12 minutes between the two cities. Construction has already begun and the first 10km will be finished in 2020. A final date for the completion of the entire route has not been released yet. So for now, we have to stick to bus, taxi or seaplane to travel between the two cities.

We hope our little tool helped you find your best way to get from Dubai to Abu Dhabi! We wish you a pleasant journey! Are you traveling on to other destinations in Asia from Dubai? Check out our other travel tales and guides for Bangkok, Tokyo, Boracay in the Philippines, North-Eastern India or Bangladesh (where I got to pet a wild crocodile).

Let us know in the comment section if you have questions, ideas or recommendations.

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How should you travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi By bus, taxi or seaplane We created a tool that will tell you your best way - based on your travel needs.
How to Travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi

19 thoughts on “How to Travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi

  1. Thanks for sharing these helpful tips and the personalized recommendation is great! I’ll definitely include a visit to Abu Dhabi when traveling to Dubai now that I know it’s so easy to do a day trip.

  2. Good tips! I’d definitely take a bus or an affordable car hire to take in the sights. Been a little over a decade that I’ve been to Dubai. Would love to re-visit UAE.

  3. The pictures you have were all so beautiful! I especially love the one of all the building above the clouds! It’s just amazing at how tall their buildings are!

  4. Thank you so much for such a useful and detail post and information. I will save this for my next trip to Dubai hihi. Love your pictures too.

  5. I haven’t been to Dubai and Abu Dhabi, but I have future plans to visit the middle east, and both of these beautiful countries have long been included in my list. Thank you so much for sharing this comprehensive guide on how to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi.

  6. Last time I was in Dubai I wanted to visit Abu Dhabi but didn’t have time to research it so I missed out. Now I know just how easy it is to get there I will make a point to visit when I am next in Dubai. Thank you for a great guide.

  7. This is a very useful post on how to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi or other way round. I live in Dubai and always prefer the public buses from Ibn Battuta Bus stations to reach Abu Dhabi to reach out to my friends. It is very safe and runs on time on my personal experience.

  8. Wow, thumbs up for your tool and recommendations! My personalized tip is “You should take the public bus” — and indeed I like a lot travelling by bus. Thus I can look through the windows and feel like I am on a tour 🙂

  9. I love how you made the post interactive in the beginning. But does everyone get the same result, no matter what they pick? Joke aside, I really hope to get to visit Dubai someday. Preferably when it’s snowing at home 🙂

  10. This is a really helpful guide! I used to live in the UAE, so I’ve done the drive several times, but if I were to go back and visit the taxi seems really convenient too and not too expensive. Thanks for sharing!

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