Now that’s a cracking good question, and one I sought to find out after a friend announced that he’d like to celebrate turning the big 3-0 with a trip to Dubai.
I’m not gonna lie, the place has never been on my wishlist (I mean, I have a degree in Ancient History. I like OLD SHIT, y’know?) but I couldn’t bear the thought of being sat at home and seeing pictures of my mates driving around in gold lambos and getting diamonds encrusted in their incisors (okay, okay so I wasn’t 100% on what went down in Doobz at this point).
“Surely you’re not counting it in your holiday challenge?” many have asked but crikey, if I’ve got to squeeze in 10 trips this year I can hardly take a sly trip to Dubai ‘just for the lols’.
Yet the cost. Good lord and gracious heavens above, that place is expensive.
When it came to accommodation, I quickly realised that the housemate and I weren’t going to be able to afford an apartment at the Marriott Hotel and Suites where our mates were staying, so I set out to find somewhere as close as I could.
Fortunately, Dubai is overrun with apartments (I swear twelve blocks went up whilst I was there) so actually, there was a lot of choice and we found a one bedroom place just two buildings down from the Marriott.
I found it on booking.com by using the map search and it came in at a sweet £184 each for 4 nights. (Edit: this apartment is no longer available so I’ve linked something similar!)
It was by no means luxury but it was clean, spacious and in a great location. Though if you like a soft bed, this is not the place for you… GOOD FOR THE BACK THO, INNIT.
It also had a nice pool area and as it was in The Princess Tower, the 2nd tallest building in Dubai, the views from its 102nd floor residents lounge are pretty special (and a hell of a lot cheaper than going up the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa).
As for the flights, they were cheaper than what I was expecting considering we didn’t have any flexibility on our dates.
The flight was… Well, I won’t lie, the flight out was AWFUL but that may have something to do with the 5 gins and 2 proseccos I’d necked before the flight (our mate has a MAGIC BANK CARD that got us into one of the lounges for ZERO PENNIES).
It also didn’t help that Qantas really crammed us in there – we’re talking a Ryanair amount of space here, lads – and I had a classic Chelsea I’m-dehydrated-in-a-small-space meltdown.
However, the flight back (after 0 gins, may I add) was much better. Emirates = more space, better food and better service in general.
I managed to book our flights for £279.83 using BudgetAir via Skyscanner but, as these were booked before I decided to be a holiday-going-heretic, we definitely could have flown for cheaper – I remember seeing one stop flights with Turkish Airlines for a sweet £200.
Here’s a quick example of the kind of prices you can get at the moment, using Thursday 21st Sep – Monday 25th Sep as an example:
London Gatwick – £224
Manchester – £252
London Heathrow – £255
But enough about your potential shenanigans, how are the numbers looking for me?
The total cost of my trip to Dubai was £463.83.
Yes, it’s a lot, but don’t you think it makes this whole thing more interesting/ohmygodwhathaveidoneeahhhhhhhh
*slaps self in face with a wet haddock*
It leaves me with £1,075.45 for the remaining 8 holidays which when you break it down, is £134.43 a pop.
Well, until I remember that it needs to include a business class flight…