We are back with our travel series. It is always wise to read up on traveling experiences before you embark on a journey. The destination for this article is Dubai, UAE. Our traveler is none other than the Nigerian tourist, Lengdung Tungchamma, a book reviewer and travel enthusiast who lives in Jos. He owns a little space on the internet called Little Ends, where he shares his thoughts, reviews, and experiences.
Dubai is an ideal destination among Nigerians due to its exquisite luxury, technology, and charm. The city photos are enough to wow you into submission, but how well do you know about interacting with the city? If you want to know, then read this piece till the end.
How did you travel from Jos, Nigeria, to Dubai?
I flew from Abuja to the UAE (United Arab Emirates) and landed in the city of Dubai. The airport is the third or second largest in the world by size. Yes, I got a visa which took about three weeks.
What inconveniences did you experience during the journey?
There was none at all, as long as you follow the rules about what is needed of you, like COVID-19 test, vaccination card, etc. It is compulsory to be vaccinated before entering Dubai.
First impression when you entered Dubai
I think Dubai was peaceful. Everything there works, so I wasn’t worried about anything. I was at peace.
Where did you spend your first night there?
I stayed at a hotel that was very close to the airport.
How was the food? Name a few of the ones you liked and the ones you didn’t
I can’t remember the foods I ate, but I remember the restaurant. It was called Mr. Tofood or something like that. I was very open to the food because I had prepared my mind that the Middle Eastern food would be far different from Nigerian food. I have traveled to Egypt before, so it was easy to be open-minded.
How many places did you visit?
I don’t remember the number of places I visited, but they were many. I visited the Dubai mall, Burj Khalifah, the Dubai Expo, and the aquarium, and I also cruised on the river. It was exciting standing at the tallest building in the world Burj Khalifa.
What was the most significant difference in how people live there compared to Nigeria?
Basically, the difference is that people are sure that things will work, time is important, no complaints, and there is constant electricity in Dubai. In short, everything is just working as it should.
How was the language barrier/your ability to communicate with the people?
There was no language barrier; Dubai is an international city. It was designed to be that way, but of course, people speak Arabic and also English.
How did you transport yourself, and how was the experience? Convenient?
I used the train for most of my movement. Every day, you buy a day ticket that you can use for public transportation for the whole day.
I was riding on the train and returning to the hotel very easily. Here is the thing, the whole city is connected by the train, it can take you from one part of the city to the other end, which is really cool.
How much did you pay your local guide?
We didn’t pay a local guide. Dubai is all on the internet; that’s the good thing about that place. You can find every information and direction you need on the internet.
Was it easy to find and buy things you needed along the way? Expensive?
Dubai is really expensive. We got this sweater that was about 245AED, which was about 40k in Nigerian Naira when converted to naira.
What do you wish you knew before you started the journey?
I don’t think there was anything in particular because Dubai is all on the internet. You just need to go and experience it. They make everything easy for tourists because they want you to come.
What website services did you find the most helpful for planning/booking your trip?
When searching for information, I used Google and Google Maps; as I stated earlier, it’s all on the internet and easy to find.
What advice would you give someone going there for the first time?
Dubai is a city everyone must visit at least once before they die, at least once. Visiting Dubai, you may not see the Expo 2020 because the world expo happens once in five years. The expo won’t be there again; the next country will be Japan. There won’t be an expo again in Dubai by the time you read this; sorry about that.
What was the most enjoyable or relaxing part of your trip?
The best thing was the Expo, and it was really cool to see a lot of things from different countries, crazy ones like the ones I saw from Russia. I was there during the week leading up to the Ukraine crisis and the Russian invasion. The Russians had this big “one love from Russia” on their wall, and I’m like, really? Big love from Russia? That must be a joke!
Would you go back?
Of course, I will go back; I will certainly go back. When next I’m going, I think I’ll be a tourist guide for my wife and kids.