3 Things to Remember About Car Insurance in the UAE

According to UAE law, you need to have car insurance before you can drive on the streets. Therefore, it is essential that you obtain car insurance before you start revving your engine. After all, it is car insurance that is going to protect you when the unexpected happens; failure to get car insurance can put you in an awful place.

From the rules surrounding driver’s licenses to the importance of using a site that compares car insurance in Dubai, read on for the three things you need to remember about car insurance in UAE.

1. First, you need to have a driver’s license.

Before you can get car insurance, you need to have a valid driver’s license. In the UAE, to obtain a driver’s license, you need to be a resident with a valid visa. Then, you can go to a registered driving institute in the relevant emirate for your driving classes. The requirements are slightly different between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

However, if you have a driver’s license from another country, you can usually use this to make the process quicker and easier. For many countries, you are allowed to transfer your current driving license to a UAE driving license. Keep in mind that you will still need to be within accordance with UAE approved terms and conditions.

The minimum age requirement for a license in the UAE is as follows:

  • 17 years of age to drive motorcycles
  • 18 years of age to drive cars and light vehicles
  • 20 years of age to drive heavy vehicles and tractors
  • 21 years of age to drive buses

For UAE and GCC citizens, licenses are valid for 10 years. For expats 21 years old and over, licenses are valid for five years.

2. There are two options for car insurance in UAE.

Before you commit to anything, you want to ensure that you understand the different types of insurance that are available to you. In the UAE, there are two options for car insurance: third party liability and fully comprehensive.

Third-party liability is the minimum cover required by UAE Law. It provides coverage against death or bodily injury to any third party and any damage to their vehicles. However, it won’t cover repairs to your car, personal medical expenses, or theft. Therefore, this one typically has a lower premium than comprehensive insurance.

Comprehensive cover is the highest level of protection as it includes Third Party Liability, which protects you from a third party’s submitted legal claims in situations wherein the accident is believed to be of your doing. It goes further and also guards/compensates you against damages to your own materials, vehicles, and property, as well as the driver’s or any passenger’s injuries or death, even if the accident was deemed to be your fault.

Additionally, some insurance companies also offer off-road insurance due to the popularity of dune bashing and off-roading activities in the Emirates. This coverage option also gives protection from all accidents that happen off-road.

A no claims discount is a conditional discount that an insurance company may elect to offer you depending on your driving history and how long you have been driving without claims. Usually, you will have to provide a No Claims Certificate from your previous insurer(s) to verify your request.

3. Not all car insurance companies are created equal.

Due to the rapid growth of the automotive industry in the UAE, there are more options for car insurance companies than ever before. For this reason, it can be extremely overwhelming to decide which is the best choice for you. Therefore, it is highly suggested that you use a reputable online insurance comparison site that can help you in your search. Plus, it will help save you time, energy, and resources because they will sort out the options for you.

By utilizing a tool such as this, you will be in a much better position to find the best car insurance deals as you will be able to quickly compare the packages that companies offer. This way, you can tell which one suits your needs the best.

It is essential to keep in mind that not all car insurance companies are designed the same, so you don’t want to just go for the cheapest rates. After all, car insurance is a crucial thing to have, so you must get an option that covers you for potential medical costs and protects you from possible financial liability.

That being said, even when you do have car insurance, you shouldn’t engage in reckless driving. Even with insurance, specific stipulations will null your insurance policy (driving under the influence or without a license, creating intentional damage, presenting misleading information, or making unethical use of a vehicle).

Do you have any experience (good or bad) with getting car insurance in the UAE? Do you have any tips or advice to share with other readers? Let us know your insights and any relevant stories in the comments below!


Erin Daniyel is the VP for Revenue Operations at Rubicon Project and spokesperson for Compare Dubai, an online comparison portal which provides customers with a one-stop platform to compare insurance quotes offered within the UAE. Compare Dubai delivers quotations from a number of insurance providers covering a range of products, from Car Insurance to Motorbike, Yacht and Boat, Medical, Life, Business, Pet and Home Insurance.