Shopping in Dubai is so much more than the day-to-day shopping we’re used to in Australia. There are over 100 malls, including the largest mall in the world and these are spread across the city, from the old-world areas to the new! Each of Dubai’s shopping venues take the retail experience to a new level (or multiple levels!). You’ll find virtually every global brand you can think of, plus plenty of unique, home-grown boutiques and labels that you won’t see anywhere else in the world.
Dubai shopping isn’t just all designer brands and modern malls—there are an incredible collection of traditional souks (markets) trading in perfume, gold, textiles, spices and more! Shops and malls tend to stay open until at least midnight during the week and, on weekends (Friday and Saturday), this can get much later! It’s no wonder that Dubai was globally voted number 2 in the world for the highest number of retail brands in one city. Shopping there is a whole experience in itself!
Shopping in New Dubai
Dubai is easily the fashion capital of the UAE thanks to the extensive lists of malls scattered across the city that are complemented by the impressive selection of brands. Whether you’re looking for the latest trends or styles that never go out of fashion, you won’t be disappointed by the malls in Dubai. The Dubai Mall, the biggest mall in the world, is a one stop shop for everything shopping with over 1200 retail outlets and more than 200 food and beverage outlets. Fashionistas will be in retail heaven when they stroll through Fashion Avenue inside Dubai Mall. Fashion Avenue exclusively features a huge range of top-end luxury brands like Gucci and collections from designers like Alexander McQueen and Versace.
It’s not just shopping at Dubai Mall either. You’ll also find the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, indoor theme park SEGA Republic, interactive educational entertainment for kids Kid Zania, 22 screen Reel Cinema megaplex and the Dubai Ice Rink all under the same roof! If you’re looking for a bargain then pay a visit to The Outlet Village. It may be located a 45 minute drive from Dubai’s city centre but it’s well worth the trip with the incredible deals you’ll find! The Outlet Village is an Italian-themed indoor mall that offer iconic brands at discounted prices. There are many other malls around Dubai to get your fix of retail therapy. Pay a visit to City Walk, Mercato Mall and Mall of the Emirates too.
Shopping in Old Dubai (souks)
The Dubai souks are world famous and for good reason. Although most shopping in Dubai nowadays takes places within the malls, the souks continue to offer a vibrant and unique shopping experience for both locals and visitors. There’s so many different souks around the city with different offerings. The Gold Souk is not to be missed, even if you aren’t in the market for shiny metals. It is the most visited souk in Dubai which is no surprise after you see the hundreds of retailers lined up with their selection of jewellery made from precious metals and stones. Wander through the wide aisles and chat to the tradesmen and artists that sell and craft the jewellery. Bartering on prices is acceptable in souks too. The weight element ($ per gram) is non-negotiable but the workmanship charge is.
The Gold Souk is open 7 days a week in Deira. Not far away from the Gold Souk you will find the Spice Souk and the Perfume Souk. The Spice Souk is full of chefs, cook and savvy expats purchasing their favourites of the colourful and aromatic spices, herbs, incense and more. While the Perfume Souk is coated in rich aromas of amber, rose and jasmine. Not just perfume, you’ll find everything scented here, from essential oils to incense sticks. You can even create your own signature scent at some of the Perfume Souk shops! The go-to for Dubai’s tailors and fashion designers, the Textile Souk is a colourful hub filled with rolls of different kinds of fabrics. These aren’t the only souks around Dubai either! Some shopping centres have taken the opportunity to create a modern approach to souk shopping including Souk Madinat, The Dubai Mall Souk and Souk Al Bahar.
Dubai Shopping Festival
You know shopping is an important part of life in Dubai since they have an entire festival devoted to it! This annual event is full of exciting features and activities making for the perfect shoppers paradise every January. The Dubai Shopping Festival is an opportunity for shopaholics to have the best deals right in front of them—most stores offer at least 75% off during this time! Not only do retailers offer huge sales but you’ll also find pop-up fashion shows inside the stores.
The Dubai Summer Surprises festival, in July, also features a range of great shopping bargains. This festival is a great one to attend if shopping isn’t your only passion. There are events for kids, adventure activities, fitness workshops, street displays, fireworks and more! To find out more about shopping in Dubai, contact our Dubai Holiday Experts! If you’re interested in Dubai Summer Surprises or the city’s other festivals, click here!