Dubai is a true global city, where people from all around the world come together. It is the capital of the Emirate of Dubai, one of the seven emirates that make up the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The other six are Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah, and Umm Al Quwain.
Although Dubai City is the capital of the Emirate of Dubai, it is not the federal capital of the UAE. That title belongs to Abu Dhabi. Yet, Dubai is the most populous, with the biggest fraction of the population composed of migrant workers, like the rest of the country. For many, like my friend, it is a land of opportunity. Much of the economy is driven by foreign migrant workers, which make up 80% of UAE’s population and 90% of its workforce.
Dubai is also the most popular destination among tourists, registering an estimated 16.7 million visitors in 2018 alone. Dubai has become the region’s banner city for opulence and grandeur. It is well-known for its ambitious projects like its artificial offshore islands and towering skyscrapers like Burj Khalifa, the tallest man-made structure in the world.
Here are more facts about this city.
- Location: Dubai Emirate, United Arab Emirates. UAE lies on the southeastern chunk of the Arabian peninsula in Western Asia (what many westerners like to call the Middle East). The UAE shares its borders with Saudi Arabia to the south and Oman to the east. Coordinates: 25°15′47″N 55°17′50″E.
- Time Zone: UTC+4 (UAE Standard Time). Dubai is 4 hours behind the Philippines, Singapore or Malaysia; and 5 hours behind Japan.
- Language: Arabic is the national language and the official language of the UAE. But English is the second language and is widely spoken.
- Currency: UAE dirham (AED, Dhs, د.إ). AED 1 is roughly equivalent to PHP14, USD 0.27, SGD 0.37, EUR 0.24 (as of July 2019).
- Modes of Payment: Cash and credit cards are both commonly accepted.