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Electric Car Owners in Dubai are Now Exempt from Paying Parking Fees


Photographed by Fernando Gòmez for Vogue Arabia March 2019

Dubai-registered electric car-owners woke up today to a great announcement made by Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), which states that their cars are now exempt from public parking fees in Dubai.

From now until July 1, 2022, all electric cars will be exempt from public parking fees in Dubai. However, the free parking option is only available to electric vehicles that are registered in Dubai, which according to the RTA are around 1,803 in number. Electric cars registered in other emirates of the United Arab Emirates will need to pay the necessary parking fees required when in Dubai.

Furthermore, owners of electric vehicles are not required to approach RTA to obtain the exemption. “Targeted vehicles can be automatically detected. Upon entering the number plate of the vehicle, the parking inspector will verify if the vehicle is electric and accordingly subject it to parking fees or exempt it, thanks to the online link between RTA’s parking and licensing systems,” stated Maitha bin Adai, CEO of Traffic and Roads Agency at RTA, when explaining how the novel system works.

According to the RTA, the decision to offer free parking was made to support Dubai’s Green Mobility Strategy. Moreover, this initiative was made as an incentive to encourage residents to consider an electric car for their next purchase. Taking the decision to switch to electric “contributes to improving the air quality, curbing carbon emissions, and enhancing sustainability,” said Adai.

This initiative also complements a previous one launched in 2018 which included designating specific parking slots in various parts of Dubai to electric vehicles exclusively. Currently, electric cars also benefit from free charging services in Dubai. In November last year, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) extended the free-charging trial until December 31, 2021.

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