A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Abu Dhabi vs. Dahab for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Abu Dhabi or Dahab?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Abu Dhabi and Dahab can help you decide which place is right for you.

Where Should I go: Abu Dhabi or Dahab?

Abu Dhabi

It doesn't get more "lifestyles of the rich and famous" than a vacation to Abu Dhabi. The federal capital and center of government for the United Arab Emirates is arguably the most modern city in the world.

Abu Dhabi has a population of 1.5 million and provides a home to several oil companies and embassies, but this place is definitely a playground for the world's fanciest tourists. This city has several large projects underway including Yas Island's Formula 1 track and Ferrari theme park.

Note: homosexuality is still outlawed in the UAE with harsh punishments including deportation, fines, jail time or even a death sentence.


Dahab is a small town on the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt. It is located about 85 kilometers north of Sharm el-Sheikh and sits on the Gulf of Aqaba. It's a popular destination with divers and backpackers alike, and offers some of the best snorkeling and diving that you'll find in the Red Sea. It's a great alternative to the resort driven Sharm el-Sheikh, and is popular with independent travelers who are looking for affordable accommodation. There are some upmarket options however, predominantly in the Laguna area, but budget facilities are not hard to find.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Budget Tours to United Arab Emirates, The Best Tours for Seniors to United Arab Emirates, The Best Family-Friendly Tours to Egypt, and The Best Historical Tours in Egypt.

Which place is cheaper, Dahab or Abu Dhabi?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Abu Dhabi is $164, while the average daily cost in Dahab is $13. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Abu Dhabi and Dahab in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Abu Dhabi $98
    Dahab $6.09
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Abu Dhabi $196
    Dahab $12
Compare Hotels in Abu Dhabi and Dahab

Looking for a hotel in Abu Dhabi or Dahab? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Abu Dhabi

Hotels in Dahab

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.

Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Abu Dhabi Hotel Prices and Dahab Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Abu Dhabi $20
    Dahab $1.92
Typical Local Transportation Prices in Abu Dhabi

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Abu Dhabi are as follows:

  • Car Rental
  • Taxi to Airport

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Abu Dhabi

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Abu Dhabi:

  • Yas Waterworld General Admission with Transfers: $123
  • Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi Tickets With Meal and Transfers : $98
  • Warner Bros World Ticket's -Abu Dhabi Without Transfer: $220
  • Warner Bros General Admission with Transfers: $150
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Abu Dhabi City - Abu Dhabi Airport (AUH): $61
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Abu Dhabi Airport (AUH)- Abu Dhabi City: $61
  • Transfer in private minivan from Abu Dhabi Airport (AUH)- Abu Dhabi City: $67
  • Tickets to Global Village with Private Transfer: $95
  • Skydive in Abu Dhabi | Tandem Skydive with transfer: $817
  • Roundtrip Transfer Private Minivan Abu Dhabi Airport (AUH) - Abu Dhabi City: $133
  • Qasr al Watan Tour with Optional Private Transfers: $50
  • Private transfer: Abu Dhabi to Abu Dhabi Airport (AUH): $41

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Dahab

Also for Dahab, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Sharm el-Sheikh: 1-Way or Round-Trip Transfer to Dahab: $38
  • Dahab To/from Sharm El Sheikh Private Transfer : $40
  • Private Transfer from Hotel in Dahab To Sharm el Sheikh Airport: $54
  • Private Sharm El Sheikh Airport (SSH) Transfer: $71
  • Private Transfer From Dahab To Taba border group from 1 to 4: $90
  • Private Pickup Transfers from Dahab to Taba: $120
  • Private Transfer From Dahab To Taba border group from 1 to 12: $220
  • Private Pickup Transfers From Dahab To Cairo: $260

Is it cheaper to fly into Abu Dhabi or Dahab?

Prices for flights to both Dahab and Abu Dhabi change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.

  • Food Meals for one day
    Abu Dhabi $45
    Dahab $4.82

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Abu Dhabi

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Abu Dhabi.

  • Dubai Marina luxury Dhow Cruise Dinner (catamaran): $42
  • Abu Dhabi Desert Safari BBQ Dinner Live Shows Pick & Drop More: $45
  • Abu Dhabi Desert Safari With BBQ Dinner & Live Shows: $49
  • Desert Safari, Quad Bike, Camel Ride & BBQ Dinner: $50
  • Desert Tour with BBQ Dinner and Hotel Transfer: $51
  • Desert Safari, Quad Bike, Camel Ride and BBQ Dinner in Abu Dhabi: $60
  • Abu Dhabi Desert Safari With Live Shows And BBQ Buffet Dinner: $60
  • Evening Desert Safari Abu Dhabi with Hot BBQ Dinner : $62
  • Abu Dhabi Evening Desert Safari with BBQ Dinner and all Camp Activities : $72
  • Desert Safari Abu Dhabi w/ Sand Boarding, Camel Ride & BBQ Dinner: $75
  • Abu Dhabi Evening Desert Safari & Dinner Under the Stars: $77
  • Abu Dhabi Desert Safari (Dune Bashing, BBQ Dinner, Camel Ride & Sand Skii): $80

Typical Food Prices in Dahab

For Dahab, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:

  • Seafood Dinner (for 2)
  • Juice
  • Breakfast for Two

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Dahab

For Dahab, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Bedouin Dinner in the Mountains In Dahab: $30
  • Bedouin Dinner in the Mountains In Dahab: $36
  • Dahab Desert Safari and Bedouin Dinner: $40
  • Stargazer + Camel riding + Bedouin dinner from Dahab : $90

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Abu Dhabi $39
    Dahab $4.60

Tours and Activities in Abu Dhabi

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Abu Dhabi are as follows:

  • Abu Dhabi Louvre Museum Entrance Ticket: $41
  • Abu Dhabi Tour-Sheik Zayed Mosque, Emirates Palace With Louvre Musuem: $115
  • Ferrari World Entrance ticket : $95
  • Full Day Abu Dhabi City & Louvre Museum Tour: $90
  • Private Full-Day Tour in Abu Dhabi: $234
  • Ticket to Louvre Museum, Abu Dhabi: $19
  • 4 Hour Cultural Tour of Abu Dhabi - Private Tour: $160
  • 8 Hour Ticket/Pass For Yas Water World In Dubai.: $103
  • 8 Hours Al Ain City Tour without lunch : $117
  • 8 hours Private Tour: Ferrari World and Louvre Museum with Pickup: $270
  • 8-Hours Tickets to Ferrari World, Abu Dhabi: $107

Tours and Activities in Dahab

For Dahab, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Saint Catherine's Monastery Half Day Tour From Dahab: $24
  • From Three Pools Guided Snorkeling Tour with Lunch: $28
  • Blue Hole Snorkeling Tour with lunch from Dahab: $28
  • Dahab Windsurfing Adventure in Red Sea Waves: $30
  • Royal seascope Semi-Submarine Cruise: $33
  • Royal Seascope Submarine Guided Boat Tour : $38
  • 4x4 Jeep Adventure from Dahab: $39
  • Full Day Climbing and Hiking Tour in Canyon with Pickup: $40
  • Blue Hole Snorkeling Adventure in Dahab: $40
  • Three Pools snorkeling and Quad Bike full-day tour in Dahab: $40
  • luxury Snorkeling cruise with buffet lunch: $41
  • Seascope Submarine Tour from Dahab: $45

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Abu Dhabi $13
    Dahab $2.63

When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Abu Dhabi and Dahab, we can see that Abu Dhabi is more expensive. And not only is Dahab much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. Since Abu Dhabi is in Middle East and Dahab is in Africa, this is one of the main reasons why the costs are so different, as different regions of the world tend to have overall different travel costs. So, traveling to Dahab would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Dahab and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Abu Dhabi would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Abu Dhabi than you might in Dahab.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Abu Dhabi Expensive? and Is Dahab Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Abu Dhabi or Dahab?

Abu Dhabi has a larger population, and is about 80 times larger than the population of Dahab. When comparing the sizes of Abu Dhabi and Dahab, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.