How to Use the Nol Card in Dubai

Getting around Dubai is cheap and easy. Whats more, the introduction of the Nol card has made travel around Dubai even more effortless. This post takes a look at How to Use the Nol Card in Dubai.

What is a Nol Card?

The Nol card is a smart card which can be used to pay for transport around Dubai. This was first introduced to make paying for public transport hassle free. However, in recent times the use of the Nol card has extended for all types of travel including taxi’s and even paying for petrol!

Where Do I Buy a Nol Card From?

Nol cards are available from your nearest ticket office at Dubai metro and bus stations. Once you have your Nol card you can add a balance to it. You must make sure to keep a minimum balance of 7.50AED on the card at all times.

For more information on locations to buy a Nol card check the RTA website here.

Types of Nol Cards

Types of Nol Cards | The Vacation Builder

Gold Card

Price: 25AED with a balance of 19AED

Valid For: 5 Years

Used for: Gold class seats on RTA Transport, Trams, Buses, Taxi, Water Taxi, Rail, Metro

Silver Card

Price: 25AED with a balance of 19AED

Valid for: 5 Years

Used for: Trams, Buses, Taxi, Water Taxi, Rail, Metro

Personal Card

Price: 70AED with a balance of 20AED

Valid for: 5 Years

Used for: Trams, Buses, Taxi, Water Taxi, Rail, Metro

Extra Benefits: Balance recoverable should you lose the card, top up online, monthly fixed price for all zones.

Red Ticket

Price: 2AED

Valid for: 90 Days

Used for: Metro, Buses, Trams

The red card is mainly aimed at short term visitors to Dubai. If you are staying in Dubai more than a couple of days and planning to move around a lot I recommend one of the other cards.

The down side to the red card is that you can only use it for one mode of transport at a time.

Customised Card

Dubai RTA has recently introduced a customised card. You will need to contact them through their website and can choose between several different designs.

Price: 30AED

Valid for: 5 Years

Used for: Trams, Buses, Taxi, Water Taxi, Rail, Metro

Benefits of Using a Nol Card in Dubai

The introduction of Nol has contributed to making Dubai one of the easiest places to travel around. Coins are a hassle to carry around and are also dirty. Some of the benefits of using a Nol Card are highlighted below:

  • Can be used to pay for public transport and car parking
  • Cuts out the need to carry extra cash
  • Different card types mean senior citizens and students travel for less

How to Check Your Nol Card Balance?

There are two different ways of checking your nol card balance.

  1. Go to the RTA website from your mobile or desktop, click on check nol balance, type in card number and security code.
  2. If you’re already in a metro station, hand it over to the ticket office and they will swipe and check it for you within seconds.

Can I Use my Nol Card for Shopping?

Amazingly, the answer to this is yes. As the world progresses, so does Dubai and at a rate better than most other cities. The Nol card can now be used to shop at major retail outlets such as; Almaya, Carrefour, Lulu, AllDay, Zoom, Circle K, Gloria Jeans, Burger King and more!

Can I Use My Nol Card to Pay for Food?

Again, the answer to this question is yes! A growing number of Dubai restaurants are now accepting nol cards for payment. This number has seen an exponential growth since the emergence of Covid19, creating a cashless and safer society.

The card can also be used at a variety of pharmacies, coffee shops and petrol stations.

It’s important to check before you dine but more often than not you will be good to go.

Where Else Do I Need to Use my Nol Card?

In 2017 it became mandatory for use to gain entry to many public parks. Parks such as; Al Mamzar Beach Park, Creek Park, Mushrif Park and Zabeel park are amongst the most popular where Nol Cards Must be Used.

Dubai Transport Zones & Fares by Nol Card

The below table details the cost of travel between each transport zone in Dubai dependant on the type of card you have.

MORE THAN 2 ZONES7.5157.58.5
Fares Per Zone as of November 2020

For more information on zones and fares and to stay updated on costs visit this page.

Nol Passes

Passes are great when you know that you are going to use public transport in Dubai frequently. Passes allow unlimited travel on all pubic transport, but not taxi’s.

If you are on a short trip in Dubai and hold a red card you can buy a day pass for 20AED.

For gold card members who wish to travel in more luxury, day passes are 40AED.


Getting around Dubai has always been cheap and easy. However, since the introduction of Nol Cards this has made it even simpler. Whenever your visiting Dubai, whether it’s for a few days or a couple of weeks I would not hesitate to carry one of these. Nol cards have to be one of the most essential things to have in your wallet when visiting Dubai.

Thank you for reading this guide. For more travel information on Dubai you can visit my blog, follow me on Pinterest and subscribe to my YouTube channel.