19 Everyday things in Dubai that make your visitors go 'WOW'

Say what? You don't pour your own petrol at the garage?

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Dubai is like a new toy. When you first arrive, you're in awe of how shiny and new everything is; you want to go everywhere and see everything and you can't stop telling everyone how great it is. But it's easy to become indifferent to all Dubai has to offer, only to be reminded every so often by some visiting guests, 'woowwww is that really the tallest building in the world?' Or, "Is it true you don't even fill your own petrol?''

Here's a list of all the everyday things that seem so normal to you but will totally fascinate your guests.

1. Nobody here owns an umbrella

Why would you? Although judging from the last few days maybe it's time we start investing in some better rain gear.

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2. There's a huge ski slope at one of the malls

It's hard to miss the huge metal structure if you're travelling down SZR, but it's easy to forget there's an actual ski slope (or two even!) inside. That is until guests visit and ALWAYS have it number one on their Dubai bucket list. Skiing in the desert? They're gobsmacked. 


3. Taxis (and petrol) are super cheap here

No matter where you're from, it's usually a treat to get a taxi when you're out and about. Here, it's part of daily life, (and it's great as long as you don't mind being stuck in traffic) so expect visitors to take full advantage of this treat.

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4. You go to Barasti as a last resort

To guests, Barasti is an unbelievably cool, laid-back beach bar that happens to have an unreal DJ set on the beach. To you, it's usually an after-thought, you'll always get let in (no matter how shabby you're looking) but with so many other great options, it's never really the first choice. 

Read next: 18 things you'll know if you've ever been to Barasti


5. You think it's normal to pay nearly AED 45 for a pint

Well it is normal...that's how much they cost here. All is fine until you have some visitor ramming the exchange rate down your neck all night and telling you how many pints you'd get for that at home. 


6. That there's actually a whole lot of greenery and growth here

Think: JLT, Safa park, JBR, Burj Park, golf courses.(With the help of a few sprinklers of course). But who knew there could be so much grass in the desert? 

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7. When you go to get petrol there's somebody there to fill your car for you

That's right...somebody comes and fills your car with petrol so you don't have to, and you just hand your money to them. We don't know why this happens but we ain't complaining. 


8. You get your dry-cleaning (and probably most of your laundry) collected and delivered to your door

At such affordable prices, why wouldn't you? Although we keep this one kinda quiet when guests visit...They're definitely shocked by this - but it's usually more shocked at how lazy we've become.

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9. You wear boots, scarves, shawls and gloves in the 'winter'.

Come October, the stores stock up with winter trends, so who are you to say no to some new, cosier threads? And in all fairness, the temperature can (in rare cases) go below 20 degrees, so really...you're actually just being practical.

7 34948 Winters In Dubai Be Like

Photo credit: Dubai memes.com

10. That you'll probably just have the drinks at a brunch you've paid close to AED 500 for.

Do you remember your first brunch? We at Lovin Dubai certainly do. You spend most of the first hour doing laps, trying to get your bearings because you're so amazed by what's on offer....An entire room just for cheese?! These days; you've seen and eaten it all and the bar is pretty much your only goal. But for visitors it's a different story, always recognisable by plates piled high with mismatched food items...anyone for jumbo prawns, quiche, lentil salad and a bit steak? Erm, no thanks. 


11. The insane amount of construction that goes on

The skyline is largely dominated by cranes. Nope, this isn't normal, but they say the number of cranes you can see on a cities skyline represents how well the economy is doing...so we're okay with it.

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12. How your ears can pop on the way home

If you live or work in a high-rise, getting in a fast lift is an everyday occurrence...so regular in fact, that you quickly stop noticing it. 


13. How you can get water, McDonalds, a spare toothbrush or literally anything you fancy delivered to the door

Anything you want at any hour of the day? Your guests will be so fascinated by this they'll never want to leave.


14. The number of supercars you see on a daily basis

Rock up to any fancy hotel and your guests will be blown-away at the number of swanky cars sitting in the valet parking....Not to mention the ones you see (and hear) rolling past in the streets. They'll have their cameras out in no time.


15. How stunning Dubai Marina is

You KNOW it's beautiful, but sometimes you forget...It takes a visitor here yapping away about how spectacular it is for us to really appreciate it all over again. 

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16.  How cigarettes are SUPER cheap

AED 10 for a box?1?!? ...Yeah, and?

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17.  There's a huge aquarium in Dubai Mall (which happens to be the biggest mall in the world)

You're over it by now. But think about it...how unusual (and very cool!) is it to have such a huge aquarium in the centre of Dubai Mall? (Not to mention a skating rink and one GIANT dinosaur skeleton).

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18. How pretty much everyone has a cleaner

Your mum is particularly amazed by this. Who needs a cleaner to tidy up such a small space? We do mum...that's who!

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19. How every apartment block has a pool

Oh we've heard all the complaints; some aren't super clean and others are too cold...BUT we've (nearly) all got pools, which is something our guests are definitely envious of...let's not even mention the gym!


READ NEXT: Nine misconceptions people have about Dubai

Written By

Casey Fitzgerald

Outside of writing for Lovin Dubai, you'll find Casey inhaling hummus, making a constant stream of terrible puns and running around in circles.