Dubai has an extensive network of waterways, and one of the best ways to explore some of them is by using the Dubai Water Bus. The Water Bus is a public transportation service operated by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in Dubai Marina. You can hop on one of the vessels to quickly navigate between the shores of the man-made Dubai Marina and enjoy stunning views of the skyline dominated by glimmering high-rise buildings, luxury yachts and modern bridges. In this article, I’ll be your guide to everything you need to know about the RTA’s Dubai Water Bus, tickets, prices, routes, timings and more!
Dubai Marina Water Bus
This UAE city is best known for its splendid waterways. Unsurprisingly, it has an extensive marine transportation system, including Dubai Abra, Dubai Ferry, Dubai Water Bus and Dubai Water Taxi. The Water Bus in Dubai is used only in one area ― the man-made canal district called Dubai Marina. It is a unique and very friendly residential neighbourhood popular among expats and tourists. It offers opportunities for many activities, like shopping, dining, multiple boat tours, cycling, jogging, walking and the world’s longest urban zipline XLine Dubai.
To quickly find your way among all these activities, you can take a water bus. It is an eco-friendly and comfortable way to travel between the Dubai Marina shores. RTA recently introduced brown-coloured boats with seats for 20 passengers. These new boats are air-conditioned, equipped for disabled people and make less noise, so your journey will be even more enjoyable.
Benefits of using Water Bus in Dubai
There are many benefits to using the RTA Water Bus. Firstly, it is very affordable, like any type of public transport in Dubai. The Water Bus tickets are reasonably priced (from AED 3), making it an excellent budget-friendly option. Secondly, it’s a convenient mode of transportation. The Water Bus operates on a fixed schedule, and the RTA ensures that the buses are punctual. Lastly, it’s a unique way to explore Dubai Marina’s waterways. You will be able to enjoy breathtaking views of the cityscape and use an excellent opportunity to take stunning photos.
What are Dubai Water Bus routes
As mentioned above, RTA’s Water Bus operates only in the Dubai Marina area. There are four stops (or marine transportation stations) on the BM1 route:
- Marina Terrace
- Dubai Marina Walk
- Dubai Marina Mall
- Dubai Promenade
RTA has also introduced a new BM3 route connecting Dubai Marina Mall with Bluewaters Island marine transportation station, but it is currently operated by water taxis.
How to buy Dubai Water Bus tickets
To pay for you Water Bus trip in Dubai, you can use the following options:
- Dubai NOL card: Use any Dubai NOL transportation card (except Red Ticket) to check in when boarding a water bus and then check out when getting off. Payment will be deducted automatically based on the route (see prices below).
- Book marine tickets on the RTA website: You can choose from a single and a daily ticket and purchase them in a couple of simple steps. The single-journey ticket allows you to take one trip on a preferred route. The daily pass allows you to travel on the Water Bus for unlimited times in one day.
- Marine transportation stations with RTA Customer Service points: You will get a paper ticket with a QR code that should be swiped while embarking.
How much is the Dubai Water Bus ticket
Are you interested to know the Dubai Water Bus prices? They will depend on your route, but all tickets are affordable.
- Dubai Marina Walk ― Marina Terrace: AED 3
- Dubai Marina Mall ― Marina Promenade: AED 3
- Dubai Marina Walk ― Dubai Marina Mall: AED 5
- Marina Promenade ― Marina Terrace: AED 11
- Dubai Marina Mall ― Bluewaters: AED 5
- Pre-booked daily pass: AED 25
Water Bus timings
RTA’s Water Bus leaves every 15-20 minutes depending on your departure stop ( every 30-60 minutes for Bluewaters). Based on your chosen option, the complete journey between Marina Promenade and Marina Terrace takes 28 to 50 minutes.
Have Fun Dubai’s Tip: On most routes, water buses run only in afternoons and evenings, and the full route starts operating towards the end of the afternoon, so make sure to check the timetable before you go.
You can see a detailed Dubai Water Bus schedule below.
Marina Promenade ― Marina Mall
- Monday ― Thursday: 13:55 to 22:15
- Friday: 13:55 to 22:20
- Saturday: 13:55 to 22:50
- Sunday: 13:55 to 22:40
Marina Mall ― Marina Walk
- Monday ― Thursday: 11:00 to 22:35
- Friday ― Sunday: 11:00 to 23:40
Marina Walk ― Marina Terrace
- Monday ― Friday: 14:00 to 22:20
- Saturday and Sunday: 14:00 to 22:45
Marina Promenade ― Marina Terrace (Full Route)
- Monday ―Thursday: 16:05 to 21:55
- Friday: 17:20 to 21:50
- Saturday and Sunday: 16:50 to 22:20
Dubai Marina Mall ― Bluewaters
- Monday ― Friday: 17:15 to 23:45
- Saturday and Sunday: 16:15 to 23:45
I recommend always checking the RTA journey planner before starting a trip. It offers up-to-date information and schedules, and you will be able to make your arrangements accordingly.
Other water transportation options in Dubai
Apart from the Water Bus, there are several other water transportation options in Dubai, including water taxis, ferries and abras. Water taxis are a more expensive option but provide a faster and more private way to explore Dubai’s waterways. Traditional motorised abras are wooden boats that operate on Dubai Creek and offer an authentic way to explore the city’s waterways. They cost just AED 1 per single trip. Besides that, you can take petrol or electric abras in areas like Dubai Creek, Dubai Water Canal, the Dubai Fountain and Global Village.
I also recommend taking boat tours in Dubai, many of which actually depart from Dubai Marina. You will be spoilt for choice: from cruises on traditional dhow boats to super modern yachts. You can set off on a romantic dinner cruise enjoying a glass of champagne with fantastic harbour views or even rent a private party boat to celebrate your magical time in Dubai.
- What is the Water Bus?
The Dubai Water Bus is a public transportation service operated by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in Dubai Marina.
- How much does it cost to ride the Water Bus?
The ticket prices for the Water Bus in Dubai vary depending on the route and start from AED 3.
- How to purchase the Water Bus tickets?
You can purchase your tickets on the RTA website or pay directly on a water bus using your Dubai NOL transportation card.
Prepare for your Dubai trip
Did you find this post helpful? Then click that little heart below and share it with your friends and family. Have fun in Dubai!