At present, there is no Metro or train service that passengers can take all the way from Dubai to Abu Dhabi.
We can, however, guide you to exactly how you CAN transit between the UAE’s two largest cities.
How to get between Dubai and Abu Dhabi
There are five primary ways to transit between the two cities:
- Public Bus
- Private Car (self-hire or driver)
- Tour group
- Airline Bus
Dubai to Abu Dhabi Distance
This all depends on where you start and end your journey, but as a general guide:
- The distance from Downtown Dubai (Dubai Mall, Burj Khalifa) to Abu Dhabi Central Station (Al Wadha Mall) is 140kms.
- From Dubai Airport (DBX) to the Abu Dhabi Corniche is 160kms.
- From Dubai Marina area to Yas Island or Abu Dhabi Airport is less than 100kms.
By private car or small van, you can move at high speed along the E11 Freeway between the two cities making the journey a little over an hour, whereas public transport from opposite sides of each city can take 2+ hours.
Dubai to Abu Dhabi Bus
Rather than a Metro or train line, the Intercity Bus is the only public transport between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
The Intercity Bus Service now operates three routes from Dubai to Abu Dhabi.
- Route 100 – Al Ghubaiba Bus Station (Dubai Greenline) in Bur Dubai to Abu Dhabi Central Bus station [Every 20 minutes, approx 2.15 hour journey]
- Route 101 – Ibn Battuta Mall to Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station [every 30 minutes, approx 1.5 hour journey]
- Route 102 – Ibn Battuta Mall to Mussafah Shabiya Bus Station [every hour, approx 1.45 hour journey]
All these routes also run in reverse from Abu Dhabi back to Dubai. and cost 25 AED one-way.
Connecting to Abu Dhabi from Dubai International Airport DXB
You can connect from Dubai Airport to Abu Dhabi in a few ways.
From Dubai Airport, there are both Metro and Bus options to get you to Al Ghubaiba Station to switch to the Intercity bus to Abu Dhabi.
From Al Ghubaiba Bus Station, you can connect to DXB by:
- From Terminal 1, take Bus 33 or 42
- Terminal 2 take bus 31
- From Terminal 3, take the Red Line Metro to Burjuman, then switch to the Green Line for Al Ghubaiaba metro stop.
- Catch a taxi – approx 30 AED
Connecting to Abu Dhabi International Airport AUH from Dubai
If you take the public bus from either Ibn Battuta or Al Ghubaiba Bus Station to Abu Dhabi Central Station, you must head back on yourself to connect to Abu Dhabi International Airport AUH, which sits “off-island”.
From Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station to AUH:
- Take the 1A bus to terminal 1&3, leaves every 40 minutes, 4AED
- Take a taxi – approx 30 minutes and costs approx 50AED
Or, head to the last stop on the Red Line Metro at Jebal Ali. From here, take a taxi over the border directly to Abu Dhabi airport. This should only cost around 170-200AED rather than 300AED+ from deeper in Dubai.
You can also now take the AUH express service from Ibn Battuta station (Red line Metro) – free for WizzAir passengers or 35 AED per person one way, which gives you the convenience of dropping you a the airport door.
Free transport option to AUH
If you are flying with Etihad, you can book your ticket to start from the Etihad office in Downtown Dubai to include a seat on their luxury coach to AUH. As long as you pre-book, this transfer is included in your ticket price and by far makes it the most cost-effective method of getting to AUH.
Will there ever be a direct train line between Dubai and Abu Dhabi?
We live in hope! But the more likely reality at this point is the development of a hyperloop. You can learn more about the Dubai Hyperloop project here.
Etihad Rail looks promisingly close to opening, however, current plans look like the passenger service for Abu Dhabi will terminate on the outskirts of the city, meaning you’d still need a bus or taxi to complete your journey into Abu Dhbai.
Watch this space though last there’s sure to be some time savings offered by this ne rail service in the near future.
Before you go… More important things you should know when planning a trip to Dubai
- Pop into our essential planning information page, it includes everything you need to know about getting around Dubai, a handy guide on what to pack, and top tips for first-timers on the do’s and don’ts, laws, and customs to be aware of.
- Check out this incredible list of 150+ places you should visit when you’re in Dubai.
- Pick up a Dubai Pass from iVenture or a Go City Dubai Pass to save up to 50% on top Dubai attractions.
- Don’t forget to pack your travel insurance!!!
- Discover the best areas to stay in Dubai, or bag a bargain on your accommodation here:
Please note we are not a travel agency. This site is a travel blog to help newcomers to the UAE and transit passengers self plan their trip, we cannot book your flights, hotels, visas or connections for you. We may make a small commission if you click on any of our recommendation links.Dubai Travel Planner