The banking system in Dubai is well-developed, reflecting the fact that the city is a center of business and commerce. The large expatriate community means that all banks are familiar with the wants and needs of people like you. With services and product information available in English as well as Arabic, you will be able to easily communicate with the different banks to find the best branch and the best services for you.
English is the business language of Dubai and all banks, whether local or international, provide products and services in English and Arabic. The main international banks are:
Barclays Bank PLC
Tel: 800 227 25297 (800 BARCLAYS)
Tel: 04 324 5000
HSBC Bank Middle East Limited
Tel: 800 4722
Standard Chartered Bank
Tel: 04 313 8888
Typical banking hours
Most banks open at 8 am. A few years ago, all banks used to close in the early afternoon. Today, however, many banks and branches stay open much later, sometimes even into the late evening. As there is so much variation, you should contact your bank for opening hours. All banks are closed on Fridays. Other bank holidays are announced in the local press.
Online banking is offered by most of the banks in the UAE. Security is an issue, as it is with online banking in any country. Scams are not unheard of, typically through emails purportedly from your bank asking you to click on a link or send details. The larger international banks seem to have more security procedures in place to protect their customers.
ATM machines can be found throughout the city in malls, shopping centers, supermarkets, and gas stations. A small AED 2 fee is usually charged if you draw money out of your account from an ATM that is not your own. For advanced services such as balance inquiries and payments, you must visit an ATM machine that belongs to your own bank.