Abu Dhabi is the largest of the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It lies just west of the emirate of Dubai.
Abu Dhabi (the capital city of the emirate of Abu Dhabi) and Dubai (the capital city of the emirate of Dubai) are connected by the E11 road (Dubai – Abu Dhabi Highway).
The road is straight and runs roughly parallel to the coastline.
RTA Bus Services
There are three bus services from Dubai to Abu Dhabi; the E100 service, the E101 service, and the E102 bus service. All are operated by the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA).
- E100 Bus Service: Al Ghubaiba Bus Station to Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station
- E101 Bus Service: Ibn Battuta Bus Station to Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station
- E102 Bus Service: Ibn Battuta Bus Station to Mussafah Shabiya Bus Station, Abu Dhabi
The E100 bus service departs from Al Ghubaiba Bus Station. Al Ghubaiba Bus Station is situated in the Bur Dubai area of the city. This service is convenient for those travelling from areas in ‘Old Dubai’ (Bur Dubai, Deira etc.).
The E101 bus service leaves from Ibn Battuta Bus Station (adjacent to the Ibn Battuta Mall). Ibn Battuta Bus Station is convenient for those travelling from areas in ‘New Dubai’ (Jebel Ali, Jumeirah Lakes Towers, Dubai Marina, Al Barsha, Palm Jumeirah etc.).
The E102 bus service launched at the end of 2019. It runs from Ibn Battuta Bus Station to Mussafah Shabiya Bus Station (just south-east of Abu Dhabi city centre). Stops on the way include Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH).
RTA Bus Timings
Bus timings from Dubai to Abu Dhabi are frequent. Services run from early morning to the early hours. In 2020 bus timetables are:
E100 Bus Timings – Al Ghubaiba Bus Station, Dubai to Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station
Timings for the E100 bus service to Abu Dhabi are shown in the table below.
|Days||First Bus||Last Bus|
|Sunday to Wednesday||04:30||00:01|
The E100 bus departs every 15 minutes or so.
The distance from Al Ghubaiba Bus Station in Dubai to Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station is around 150 km (93 miles). The journey takes around 2 hours.
E101 Bus Timings – Ibn Battuta Bus Station, Dubai to Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station
Timings for the E101 bus to Abu Dhabi are shown in the table below.
|Days||First Bus||Last Bus|
|Sunday to Wednesday||04:45||23:15|
The E101 bus leaves every 20 minutes or so.
The distance from Ibn Battuta Bus Station in Dubai to Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station is approximately 115 km (71 miles). The journey takes about 1.5 hours.
E102 Bus Timings – Ibn Battuta Bus Station, Dubai to Mussafah Shabiya Bus Station, Abu Dhabi
Timings for the E102 bus service to Abu Dhabi are shown below.
|Days||First Bus||Last Bus|
|Sunday to Wednesday||05:30||22:30|
The E102 bus leaves every hour or so.
The journey time from Ibn Battuta Bus Station (Dubai) to Mussafah Shabiya Bus Station in Abu Dhabi is around 2 hours.
The bus stops at Abu Dhabi International Airport on the way. The journey time from Ibn Battuta Bus Station to Abu Dhabi International Airport is approximately 1.5 hours.
Travelling by RTA bus is the cheapest way to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi. A one-way ticket costs just 25 AED in 2020 (£5.59, €6.25, $6.81).
The ticket price is the same for all bus services from Dubai to Abu Dhabi (E100, E102, and E102).
You can get on the bus to Abu Dhabi using a NOL card (contactless public transport payment card). NOL cards can be purchased and topped up from many locations (Dubai Metro stations, bus stations, etc.).
Other Transport Options – Dubai to Abu Dhabi
Please note there are no commercial flights between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
Aside from the RTA buses, options for travelling to Abu Dhabi include:
Taxis from Dubai to Abu Dhabi are offered by both Uber and Careem. The taxi fare will be considerably higher than RTA public bus.
Visitors wishing to drive to Abu Dhabi can hire a car.
Car rentals are readily available throughout Dubai.
Emirates passengers can fly into Dubai International Airport (DXB) and take a free shuttle bus to Abu Dhabi.
Details of the shuttle bus service can be found on the Emirates website here. Prior booking is required. When booking the flight on the Emirates website, please ensure to enter Abu Dhabi as the final destination to obtain the transfer ticket.
There are limited shuttle bus services and the bus journey is taken on the first bus after the flight lands.
Etihad also operates a coach service between Abu Dhabi International Airport and Dubai. Details can be found on the Etihad website here.
If you are travelling from Dubai to Abu Dhabi to visit one of the major tourist attractions (Louvre, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Ferrari World, Yas Waterworld, etc.) it may be more convenient to book an organised tour from Dubai.
Organised tours generally include transport and entrance tickets.
Free Shuttle Bus to Yas Island (Yas Waterworld, Ferrari World)
Those not wishing to book an organised tour to Yas Waterworld or Ferrari World can purchase entrance tickets themselves and take advantage of free shuttle buses from Dubai to Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.
Buses depart from various locations in Dubai (Mall of the Emirates, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai Mall, City Centre Deira, Jumeirah Beach Residence, Burjuman, Dubai Marina Mall etc.) and go directly to Yas Island.
Buses leave in the morning and return in the evening. Schedules are limited and passengers need to present an e-ticket to the driver. Services also operate on a first-come, first-served basis.
Photo Credit: Pajor Pawel/Shutterstock