Whether it’s for a day trip, business, or an airport transfer, travel from Abu Dhabi to Dubai by bus is easy.
The distance from Abu Dhabi to Dubai is approximately 140 km and takes around 1 hour and 20 minutes by car since so much of the journey is along the Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Highway.
However, travelling on the Abu Dhabi bus to Dubai is quite a bit slower and can take between 1 hour and 50 minutes to 2 hours and 20 minutes depending on the chosen route and traffic.
Although Abu Dhabi and Dubai are both in the UAE, there is a border between the two Emirates.
Since most of the covid restrictions have been dropped, the border is no longer such an issue for people passing from one Emirate to the other.
Private transfers can cost anything from 300 AED depending on the size of the group and type of vehicle which is not too expensive considering the distance.
However, taking a transfer may not be particularly budget friendly for some so travelling from Abu Dhabi to Dubai by bus is a great alternative.
In this post, we cover the Abu Dhabi to Dubai bus routes, timetables, ticketing information and potential variations in the schedule due to Ramadan. Not to mention the Airport Express bus option!
Darbi is the local transport app which is very useful for all things transport. It covers everything from live bus arrivals to the nearest bus stops and road traffic conditions.
Abu Dhabi To Dubai Buses
There are essentially three public buses from Abu Dhabi to Dubai which is the E100, E101 and E102. All buses are comfortable coach-style with AC, nice roomy seating and free WiFi to stay connected on the journey.
It is not permitted to eat on the bus which is particularly important during Ramadan to respect the local culture.
Similarly, bus schedules can change during Ramadan and the peak of summer so it is really worth downloading the Darbi app to keep up to date with the schedules.
Paying The Abu Dabi To Dubai Bus Fare
The buses from Abu Dhabi to Dubai are operated by the RTA which is a Dubai authority. Cash is not accepted on the buses, however, it is possible to purchase a bus ticket inside the bus station which is probably the best option for one-off trips.
The alternative option is to use a Nol card which is an electric ticketing card used for Dubai services. Nol means ‘fare’ in Arabic. There are four types of Nol cards including:
- Red ticket
- Silver card
- Gold card
- Blue card
If you are going to be spending time in Dubai it may be worth getting a Nol card since it can be used on the metro, on buses, in taxis, in museums and even on groceries.
Nol cards are essentially a top up system with varying levels of features. A red ticket is pretty good for a tourist who may be using the metro system in Dubai for a few days.
Whereas the other options are more suitable for commuters. The gold card for example offers access to the gold class seats on the Dubai Metro.
Nol cards can be purchased from RTA Happiness Centres in Dubai as well as Dubai metro and bus stations.
E100 Bus Abu Dhabi To Dubai
E100 bus from Abu Dhabi to Dubai departs from Central Station and finishes at Al Ghubaiba in Dubai. The journey is approximately 192 kms and takes 2 hours and 20 minutes depending on traffic conditions.
The E100 goes further into Dubai than the E101, with the last stop being near the west side of the Dubai creek. Al Ghubaiba is connected to the green metro line in Dubai.
E100 Abu Dhabi to Dubai bus timings starts at 0420 hrs and the last bus finishes at 2350 hrs Monday to Friday.
On Saturdays and Sundays, there are slightly extended hours with the first bus leaving at 0420hrs and the last bus at 0020hrs.
The E100 bus service Abu Dhabi to Dubai departs approximately every 20 minutes throughout the week.
There are a handful of stops on the E100 route including:
- Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station
- Abu Dhabi, Samha, Abu Dhabi City
- Max Metro Station Landside
- Department of Ports & Customs
- Al Ghubaiba Bus Station 9 in Dubai
A one-way ticket costs 25 AED per person. Cash is not accepted so either purchase a ticket at the station or use a Nol card if you have one.
E101 Abu Dhabi To Dubai Bus
The E101 is another route from Abu Dhabi to Dubai departing from Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station and finishing its journey at Ibn Battuta Metro in Dubai.
Abu Dhabi Central Bus station to Ibn Battuta is approximately 116 km and the journey takes around 1 hour and 50 minutes.
The E101 is a shorter journey than the E100 and allows passengers to connect with the Dubai Metro much more quicker.
The first bus Monday to Friday is at 4:45am from the Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station. Whereas the last bus is at 01:15am.
Over the weekend on Saturdays and Sundays, the first bus is at 7:40 am and the last bus is at 6:40 am.
The bus departs approximately every 30 minutes throughout the day and every hour after 11:30pm.
There are four stops on the route including:
- Abu Dhabi Central Station 01
- Abu Dhabi Shahama Village 01
- Abu Dhabi Samha 01
- Ibn Battuta Metro Bus Stop 4
The bus fare is 25 AED one way per person and it is not possible to pay with cash. Purchase a ticket at the station or use a Nol card if you have one.
The E102 bus route from Abu Dhabi to Dubai commences its journey from the neighbourhood of Musaffah and it also serves Abu Dhabi airport along the way.
Bus E102’s final stop is Ibn Battuta making it an ideal point to connect with the metro in Dubai. The entire journey is a little under 2 hours depending on traffic conditions.
The first bus departs at 5:30am and the last bus is at 1030pm Monday to Sunday.
The 6 stops along the route include:
- Mussafah Shabiya Bus Station
- Al Mussafah Park
- Al Najah Private School
- Al Ain University
- Abu Dhabi Airport
- Ibn Battuta Bus Station
The bus fare is 25 AED one way per person and it is not possible to pay with cash. Purchase a ticket at the station or use an NOL card if you have one.
The E102 is 10 AED less than the airport express for passengers going to Dubai.
Airport Express 24/7
Many transit passengers disembark at Abu Dhabi airport and need to travel to Dubai. It may be to get on another flight or maybe Dubai is the final destination.
There are hourly departures from Terminal 2 at 45 minutes past the hour. Whereas it is on the hour from T1 and 3.
It takes approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes to the Ibn Battuta Mall which is basically close to the Dubai and Abu Dhabi border. It is also the connection to the red line of the Dubai metro system.
There is no Abu Dhabi to Dubai metro, however Ibn Battuta is one of the closest metro stations to Abu Dhabi.
The bus costs 35 AED per person and tickets can be picked up in the arrivals hall of Abu Dhabi Aiport.
Other Ways To Travel From Dubai To Abu Dhabi
Book A Private Transfer Or Taxi
The quickest and easiest way to travel from Abu Dhabi to Dubai is most certainly by taxi or private transfer. It is possible to pre-book a variety of different transfers between the two Emirates. Be it hotel to hotel or airport to hotel.
A taxi can be booked here and can also be cancelled up to 24 hours in advance with a full refund.
Otherwise booking a private hail ride with Uber or Careem are super easy. There are options on such apps to carpool in order to reduce the price.
Take A Guided Tour Of Dubai
if you are looking for ways to get to Dubai in order to tour the city, taking a guide is an ideal option since it includes a transfer and a trip around the sites. Again, the tour can be cancelled up to 24 hours before for a full refund.
This tour departing from Abu Dhabi to Dubai is highly reviewed and includes pick up and drop off as well as top sites such as Dubai Marina, Burj Al Arab, Palm Jumeirah, The Dubai Mall, Burj Khalifa, The Gold Souk, The Dubai Spice Souk and a ride in an ‘Abra’ AKA a water taxi on the creek.
Take A Boat To Dubai From Abu Dhabi
It is not a well-known fact, however, there is a boat from Abu Dhabi to Dubai on a tour basis.
The tour is run by Rayan Tours and the speed boat can take up to 10 people. In addition to the boat trip, the tour operator offers to pick up and drop off from central Abu Dhabi locations.
Rent A Car
Finally, renting a car in Abu Dhabi is super easy and cost-effective. It is possible to use a foreign license as long as you are only on a tourist visa. However, if you have a resident visa, you must have a UAE license to rent a car.
It is more cost-effective to rent a car away from the airport as there always tends to be a premium on airport rentals.
It is important to be aware of the Dubai Salik which is the electronic system registering the use of tolls. Usually, rental companies will have the car set up with Salik. However, it is worth discussing it to ensure you will not be fined.
There are often issues for residents who drive across to Dubai if they are not set up with Salik to make automatic payments.
Frequently Asked Questions About Travelling From Abu Dhabi To Dubai
How can I travel between Abu Dhabi and Dubai?
Take a bus, private transfer or car pool on one of the apps such as Uber.
How much is a bus from Abu Dhabi to Dubai?
The public bus E100, E101 and E102 cost 25 AED one way. Whereas the Airport 24/7 bus is 35 AED one way.
How much is a taxi from Abu Dhabi to Dubai?
A taxi can cost approximately 300 AED from Abu Dhabi to Dubai. However, the price will vary on pick-up and drop-off location, luggage and the number of passengers.
What time does the bus start from Abu dhabi to Dubai?
The E100 starts at 0420hrs. The E101 commences at 4:45 am and the E102 starts at 5:30 am.
Is there bus from Dubai to Abu Dhabi?
Yes the E100, E101, E102 and airport bus all have a route from Dubai to Abu Dhabi.
How many hours travel from Abu Dhabi to Dubai by bus?
The bus from Abu Dhabi to Dubai takes around 2 hours, whereas a private transfer is around 1 hour and 20 minutes.
Can you get a taxi from Dubai to Abu Dhabi?
Yes all of the major apps such as Uber and Careem take passengers fro Dubai to Abu Dhabi.
Can I go to Abu Dhabi with a Dubai visa?
Yes tourists can travel freely between the two Emirates on a tourist visa.
When Is The Best Time To Visit Abu Dhabi?
September is considered a shoulder month, it is still quite hot but tolerable early morning and in the evenings.
Disclaimer: This post about getting from Abu Dhabi to Dubai by bus, taxi or tour contains affiliate links. By using them, it will not cost you any extra, we will receive a small commission to keep us writing.