Dubai weather and the best time to visit
Dubai is located on the Arabian Peninsula which is known as one of the hottest places on earth. Because of this, the emirate has a subtropical, warm desert climate. Thanks to this climate, the sun shines almost all year round in Dubai, the sky is clear blue and the average temperature is around 25 degrees. Thanks to this desert climate, Dubai has a guaranteed period of wonderful weather and is therefore the ideal location for a beach holiday! During the most gloomy months the number of average sun hours in Dubai is still around eight to nine hours a day, much more than people in the West are used to! With an average daily temperature of 27.5 degrees Celsius, Dubai is even one of the hottest cities in the world.
How hot is the summer in Dubai?
The summers (mid-May to late October) in Dubai are dry, sunny and very hot with temperatures that can reach almost 50 degrees in the shade. The hottest months are July, August and September, during which temperatures rise above 40 degrees almost every day. It hardly cools down in the evenings and the thermometer still shows values of around 30 degrees. This is one of the reasons why travelling to Dubai is cheapest in summer! Most expats will leave Dubai during the summer to spend July and August in their home country to spend their holidays. The high temperatures in the summer months in combination with high humidity of around 90% can also cause it to become very stuffy during the day.
How hot is the winter in Dubai?
In the winter, which runs from November to the beginning of April, Dubai is a great place to spend your holidays with an average temperature of 24 degrees. The winter period is by far the most pleasant season to stay in Dubai. It can rain in winter, but luckily the showers are short-lived and it only rains 15 days a year in Dubai. The chance that you have to spend your holiday in the rain in Dubai is very small!
The coolest months are January and February with an average temperature of 26 degrees. It might feel a bit cooler as there is most likely to be a little breeze. But even with the breeze it is great to stay in Dubai during the winter months!
How much does it rain in Dubai?
As Dubai lies on the Arabian Peninsula you might not expect that it actually rains in Dubai. In the summer months (mid-May to late October) you will probably not see a drop of rain but during the winter season, which runs from November to early April, there is a slight chance of rain. These are often small showers and stop after 15 minutes to an hour.
The average annual rainfall is 89 to 95 millimeters. Rainfall occurs on average 15 days a year in Dubai, but often this is not more than a small shower. Due to climate change and cloud seeding it has been raining a lot more recently which also has resulted in more floods. Because the infrastructure is not designed for heavy rainfall, a heavy rain shower in Dubai causes major nuisance resulting in flooded tunnels and roads.
The chance of hail in Dubai is minimal to non-existent. Natural snow is impossible due to the high temperatures during the winter months. Those looking for snow fun in Dubai will have to move to the covered ski slope Ski Dubai which can be found in the Mall of the Emirates
How humid is Dubai?
Dubai can be very humid with the average highest humidity between 82 and 92 percent, the lowest value between 25 and 45 percent. The highest humidity is measured during the winter period, while May knows the lowest humidity. The high humidity during the winter months can be clearly seen during the day as a grey veil covers the city, making the sun a little less bright and the sky less blue. Also in the mornings you can see fog hanging over the city or in the streets. As the sun rises and it grows hotter the fog disappears.
What is the UV-Index in Dubai?
The sun in Dubai is very strong, even in the winter months the UV Index is at the level most people experience during summer in the West. In the months of March to September the UV Index is at its strongest and is 11+. So make sure that you are well protected against the sun at all times and that you bring and apply a high factor sun screen. Not doing this might result in a bad sun burn or even a sun stroke!
What is the best time to visit Dubai?
Although you can easily travel to Dubai all year around, I would not necessarily recommend travelling to Dubai during the summer months. Temperatures during summer are very to extremely high. Temperature during the day will almost always climb above 40 degrees and temperatures of 46 degrees are not an exception. Most people stay inside during summer and expats flee the city back to their home country. Emirati citizens will prefer to travel extensively during the summer.
Due to the fact that the weather is too warm and most tourists prefer to visit during the winter, prices of flights and hotels are very cheap.
It is also best to avoid the Ramadan period, during this period many restaurants and bars are closed during the day and you cannot eat or drink in public – not even as a tourist. Parties, brunches and public life are put on hold during Ramadan and many tourist attractions might operate with different opening hours. Because the start of Ramadan depends on the moon, the month of fasting starts on a different day each year. Make sure to research when Ramadan starts before you book your tickets!
I would personally say that the period between the end of October and mid-May is the best travel period to travel to Dubai. The temperatures are very pleasant, the chance of rain is low and you get about 8 to 9 hours of sunshine a day.
If you are tied to school holidays, then you will want to book in a trip to Dubai during Spring Break. During the Christmas holidays and especially on New Year's Eve, the prices of the hotels are a lot higher and it can also be very busy in Dubai, especially at the tourist hot spots.