Dubai Nol Card: Your Key to Easy and Efficient Travel

The Dubai Nol Card is an innovative, comprehensive public transport payment system designed to make your travel across Dubai’s various modes of transport both seamless and efficient.

It’s more than just a travel card; it’s a key to navigating the city’s extensive public transit network, including the metro, buses, and trams.

With different types of Nol Cards available, each tailored to specific user needs, the system ensures convenience, flexibility, and affordability for both residents and visitors.

Whether you’re a daily commuter, a tourist, or someone who travels occasionally, the Nol Card system is designed to cater to your travel needs in the most efficient way, making it an essential part of the Dubai public transport experience.

What Is Nol Card?

The Nol Card, introduced in August 2009, is a vital component of Dubai’s public transport infrastructure. Its name, derived from the Arabic word نول meaning ‘fare’, reflects its primary function as a fare payment method. This innovative system was designed by the Hong Kong-based Octopus Cards Limited.

Functioning as a contactless smartcard, the Nol Card is similar in size to a credit card and stores prepaid funds. It covers bus and train fares within four designated zones in Dubai. Users must preload the card with credit and use it to ‘tag on’ and ‘tag off’ at electronic gates or terminals in metro stations and buses. This process validates trips and deducts the appropriate fare.

Initially available only at Metro Stations, Bus Terminals, and selected bus stops, the Nol Card has expanded its accessibility.

Users can now top up their cards online, at ticket machines, or at ticket offices using credit/debit cards or cash.

This system aims to streamline the ticketing process, reduce the need for paper tickets, and encourage usage through lower fares compared to traditional paper tickets, though the card itself has a purchase fee.

Nol cards cannot be used in Abu Dhabi. Abu Dhabi has its own transport payment system, separate from Dubai’s Nol card system.

As for Sharjah, Nol cards are also not accepted on Sharjah buses. Sharjah operates with its own transport payment method, distinct from the Nol card system used in Dubai. Each emirate in the UAE has its own local transport payment system, and they are generally not interchangeable.

Types of Nol Cards

The Nol Card system in Dubai is a convenient and versatile way for residents and visitors to access public transportation.

These cards are available in different types, each catering to various needs and preferences:

  • Red Nol Card: Ideal for tourists and infrequent users. It’s inexpensive, costing AED 2, but doesn’t come with pre-loaded credit.
  • Silver Nol Card: A popular choice for regular commuters, priced at AED 25, which includes AED 6 for the card and AED 19 as initial credit.
  • Gold Nol Card: Offers access to exclusive Gold Class cabins on the Metro and Tram, at a higher fare rate.
  • Blue Nol Card: A personalized option with online top-up features and concession options for students and senior citizens.

Who Needs a Nol Card?

Essentially, all public transport users aged 5 and above in Dubai require a Nol Card.

However, ‘People of Determination’ (individuals with disabilities) are exempt and can use public transport for free.

Cost of Metro Trips

Fares vary based on the card type and the number of zones traveled across.

Dubai’s public transport system is divided into seven zones, influencing the fare structure.

There are three fare tiers, depending on whether the journey stays within one zone, crosses two zones, or spans three or more zones.

Purchasing a Nol Card

Nol Cards can be bought at Dubai Metro stations, certain bus stations, RTA Customer Service Centers, and authorized sales agents.

The Red Tickets and Silver Cards are also available from Ticket Vending Machines, while Blue Cards can be obtained online.

Understanding these details about the Nol Card system can greatly enhance the convenience and efficiency of traveling around Dubai, making it an essential element for navigating the city’s public transportation network.

Which Nol Card Is Best for You?

For tourists in Dubai, choosing the right Nol Card depends on your travel needs and the duration of your stay.

Here’s a breakdown of the Red and Silver Nol Cards to help you decide:

Nol Red Card

Best For: Occasional users and short-term tourists.

Cost: AED 2 for the card.



  • 1-day pass (regular): AED 20.
  • 1-day pass (Gold): AED 40.
  • 1 zone: AED 4, 2 zones: AED 6, 3+ zones: AED 8.50.

Nol Blue Card

Ideal For: Daily commuters looking for security and personalization.

Price: AED 70 (includes AED 20 e-purse value).

Key Benefits:

  • Secure balance protection in case of card loss/theft.
  • Personalized with a photo.
  • Access to online services, SMS, and email notifications.
  • Valid for 5 years.
  • Students, senior citizens, and social welfare beneficiaries get 50% off fares.

Load Capacity: Up to AED 5000.

Nol Silver Card

Best For: Regular users or tourists planning extensive travel.

Cost: AED 25 (includes AED 19 credit).


  • Auto fare calculation from e-purse.
  • Valid on all transport modes.
  • Maximum journey duration of 180 minutes.
  • Valid for 5 years.


  • 1 zone: AED 3,
  • 2 zones: AED 5,
  • 3+ zones: AED 7.50.

Nol Gold Card

Ideal For: Those seeking a more luxurious travel experience.

Price: AED 25 (with AED 19 as e-purse value).

Key Benefits:

  • Access to Gold Class cabins on Metro and Tram for premium comfort.
  • Fare is automatically deducted from the e-purse.
  • Valid across all transport modes (premium seating in Metro & Tram).
  • Valid for 5 years.


  • 1 zone: AED 6,
  • 2 zones: AED 10,
  • 3+ zones: AED 15.

The Nol Gold Card and Nol Blue Card are also options, with the Gold Card offering access to premium seating and the Blue Card offering security for lost or stolen cards, but these may be more suitable for residents or frequent visitors.

In summary, the Nol Red Ticket is ideal for short stays and less frequent travel, while the Nol Silver Card is more cost-effective for longer stays and frequent travel across Dubai’s public transport network.

Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly, and Annual Passes with Nol Card

7-Day regular pass

  • 1 zone 50 AED
  • 2 Zones 80 AED
  • 3+ Zones 110 AED

7-Day Gold pass

  • 1 zone 100 AED
  • 2 Zones 160 AED
  • 3+ Zones 220 AED

30-Day regular pass

  • 1 zone 140 AED
  • 2 Zones 230 AED
  • 3+ Zones 350 AED

30-Day Gold pass

  • 1 zone 280 AED
  • 2 Zones 460 AED
  • 3+ Zones 700 AED

90-Day regular pass

  • 1 zone 330 AED
  • 2 Zones 550 AED
  • 3+ Zones 830 AED

90-Day Gold pass

  • 1 zone 660 AED
  • 2 Zones 1100 AED
  • 3+ Zones 1660 AED

365-day regular pass

  • 1 zone 1060 AED
  • 2 Zones 1770 AED
  • 3+ Zones 2670 AED

365-day Gold pass

  • 1 zone 2120 AED
  • 2 Zones 3540 AED
  • 3+ Zones 5340 AED