Driving in Dubai? Understand Salik for a Smooth Journey!
Salik, the electronic toll gate system introduced on July 1, 2007, by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) Dubai, plays a crucial role in enhancing traffic flow throughout the city. This guide covers essential aspects, from understanding how Salik works to obtaining a Salik tag and the registration process.
Salik Dubai operates on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to levy toll fees seamlessly. By purchasing a Salik tag, equipped with RFID, drivers enable automatic fee deduction as they pass through Salik toll points. Regardless of the driver, account holders are responsible for the toll charges incurred during each trip through these points.
A Salik tag is a sticker that ensures accurate vehicle identification within the system. Placed around 1 cm below the rear-view mirror on the windshield, this tag is detected by Salik sensors at toll points. The sensor communicates with the tag, triggering fee deduction from the prepaid Salik account.
Salik Toll Gates in Dubai:
Strategically positioned across major highways and bridges in Dubai, there are seven Salik gates.
- Al Barsha Salik Gate , Sheikh Zayed Road
- Al Safa Salik Gate , Sheikh Zayed Road
- Al Garhoud Salik Gate, Al Garhoud Bridge
- Al Mamzar North Salik Gate, Al Ittihad Street
- Al Mamzar South Salik Gate, Al Ittihad Street
- Airport Tunnel Salik Gate, Beirut Street
- Jebel Ali Salik Gate, Sheikh Zayed Road
- Al Maktoum Salik Gate, Al Maktoum Bridge
The cost for passing through Salik gates is AED 4, and the timings are 24 hours, operating around the clock. Al Maktoum Salik Gate 24 hours all days, but free from 10:00 pm Thursday to 6:00 am Saturday.
- Passing through Al Mamzar North and Al Mamzar South toll gates in one direction within an hour incurs a single charge.
- Salik gates operate 24/7, including holidays.
When is Salik free?
While Salik is not exempt from charges on weekends or public holidays, there are specific times when you can use the Al Maktoum Bridge on Dubai Creek without incurring toll fees. This opportunity arises during the closure of the alternative route, the Floating Bridge, at certain times of the day.
The Al Maktoum Bridge toll gate has the following free timings:
- On weekdays, the toll gate is free from 10 pm to 6 am.
- During the weekend, the bridge is toll-free from Saturday 10 pm till Monday 6 am.
How to Get a Salik Tag
To initiate your interaction with the Salik system, you must obtain a Salik tag. The registration form is available at various locations, including RTA Customer Service Centres, petrol stations (EPPCO/ENOC, Emarat, and ADNOC), and select banks (Emirates NBD and Dubai Islamic Bank branches).
How to Register for Salik
The registration process involves the following steps:
- Fill out the registration form available at RTA Salik outlets or apply online.
- Upon submitting the required documents and fees, the authorities verify the information and provide you with the Salik kit containing the tag.
- Affix the tag to your car’s windshield.
- Once your information is processed, you’ll receive a PIN and account number via SMS, enabling access to your Salik account.
- For tag-only requirements, online registration at salik.ae is available.
You can use the Salik tag immediately after installation, with account activation taking approximately 2 days. Any fees incurred during this period will be deducted later. If confirmation SMS is not received within 10 days, contact the authorities.
You can add multiple vehicles to a single Salik account, simplifying the process for those with more than one vehicle. It’s important to note that RTA registers a single-user Salik account for all tags issued in your name, covering multiple registered vehicles.
Exceptions apply if your other vehicle is registered in a different emirate, allowing for a separate account.
Salik Fees and Costs:
Getting a new Salik tag costs AED 100 at petrol stations and AED 120 online, with an additional AED 20 for delivery. The prepaid toll balance in your account is AED 50.
Salik Operational Details
Salik gates operate 24/7, including Fridays. Sheikh Zayed Road hosts three toll gates: Jebel Ali, Al Barsha, and Al Safa.
Recharging Salik Account
Recharge your Salik account through the app, website, auto top-ups at your bank, Salik recharge cards, kiosk machines, or cash deposit machines for Emirates NBD and DIB.
Paying Dubai Salik Toll Fees:
To pay the Dubai Salik toll fees, follow these simple steps:
- Register with Salik: Sign up with Salik and get a Salik tag.
- Attach the Salik Tag: Place the Salik tag on your car’s front windshield.
- Automatic Scanning: The Salik tag will be automatically scanned at electronic gates, and the toll amount will be deducted from your account.
Dubai’s Salik toll gates are equipped with advanced sensors and cameras to identify your car. This means you don’t have to physically stop or slow down to pay the fees.
Documents Required to Activate a Salik Account:
To activate a new Salik account, you’ll need:
- Identification Documents: Provide copies of your Emirates ID or passport.
- Car Registration Card (Mulkiya): Submit a copy of your car’s registration card.
- Trade License (if applicable): For cars registered under companies, include a copy of the trade license.
Ensure you have these documents ready for a smooth Salik account activation process.
How to Check Salik Balance in Dubai:
Checking your Salik balance in Dubai is a straightforward process. Here’s a step-by-step guide:
- Online Check:
- Log in with your registration details via the official Salik website or the RTA App.
- Review your account statements to verify toll charges and account activity.
- Customer Service Call:
- For inquiries or assistance, call the customer service number at 800-72545.
- Press 3 to log into your account.
- Enter your account number and PIN.
- Press 1 to know the current amount in your Salik account.
- Alternative Methods:
- Utilize the official website of Salik for balance checks.
- Explore the Smart Salik App, offering a user-friendly interface for checking your Salik account balance.
Maintaining Sufficient Funds:
Dubai’s Salik system operates on an advance payment mechanism using Salik tags. After purchasing and activating the tag on the RTA app or website, affix it to your car’s windshield. As your car passes through toll gates, fees are automatically deducted.
To ensure seamless travel, regularly add credit to your Salik account and monitor the balance. This proactive approach guarantees that your account has sufficient funds to cover toll charges.
For inquiries, contact Salik Dubai at +971-800-72545.
Salik violations in Dubai incur penalties as follows:
- Insufficient Funds (ISF) Violation: Passing a Salik toll gate with insufficient credit and failing to recharge within the next five days results in a AED 50 penalty.
- Unregistered Plate (URP) Violation: Passing a Salik gate with no registered tag and failing to register one within the next 10 days leads to a penalty of AED 100 for the first time, AED 200 for the second time, and AED 400 for each subsequent time. Note: If you pass through multiple times during the day, there is a maximum of one violation per day.
Certain vehicles, including military vehicles, ambulances, police vehicles, RTA public buses, college buses, school buses, and those under the category ‘Determined Ones,’ are exempt from Salik toll fees according to the rules of the Road and Transport Authority (RTA), Dubai.
Tips to Avoiding Salik Costs
For individuals seeking ways to steer clear of Salik fees in Dubai, there are alternative routes available across the city. Optimal paths include:
- E311/Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road: Beneficial for bypassing Jebel Ali, Al Safa, and Al Barsha Salik Gates, especially for travel from Abu Dhabi to Dubai.
- Floating Bridge: Ideal for sidestepping Al Maktoum and Al Garhoud Salik Gates.
- Business Bay Crossing: A route to circumvent the Al Garhoud Salik Gate.
- D 83/Rebat Street: A toll-free road providing an escape from the Airport Tunnel Salik Gate.
- Al Wahda Street, Al Damascus Street, or E311/Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road: Routes to avoid Al Mamzar North & South Salik Gate.
- Utilize Google Maps with the “Avoid Tolls” option when selecting these routes.
To avoid Salik tolls, you can also use the ‘RTA Smart Drive’ app created by Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA). This free GPS navigation app lets drivers skip toll roads when planning their route. Here’s how to use it:
- Download the ‘RTA Smart Drive’ app from the Google Play Store or Apple App Store.
- Open the app and select the fourth option from the bottom menu bar, represented by a road icon.
- Choose the ‘Go to Search’ option.
- Tap the ‘Navigate to’ button.
- Click on the settings icon on the right side of your screen, then choose ‘Toll Roads’ under ‘Avoid on Route.’ You also have the option to avoid highways.
- Tap ‘OK,’ and the ‘RTA Smart Drive’ will set your route accordingly.
Do tourists need to buy a Salik tag?
When driving in Dubai, all vehicles, including those with non-UAE number plates, are required to have a Salik tag to pass through toll gates and avoid fines. This rule applies to both local and international visitors, as well as vehicles registered in other emirates within the UAE.
If you own an unregistered vehicle, you can still pass through a Salik gate, but you have a 10-day grace period from the first trip to register for a Salik tag. Failure to purchase a tag within this period will result in fines, starting at Dh100 for the first offense, Dh200 for the second trip, and Dh400 for subsequent trips.
To obtain a Salik tag, individuals with vehicles registered outside the UAE should visit any Dubai petrol station (Emarat, EPPCO, ENOC, or ADNOC). Vehicles registered in the UAE can purchase the tag from the Salik website (www.salik.ae).
The required documents include a mobile number for Salik-related communication and vehicle registration card details (not needed when buying from petrol stations).
Once purchased, the Salik sticker tag should be affixed to the car’s windshield, linked to a prepaid Salik account with sufficient funds to cover toll charges.
Understanding and effectively managing Salik is essential for a smooth driving experience in Dubai. Stay informed, adhere to regulations, and explore toll-free alternatives to ensure hassle-free journeys on the road.
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