Dh15 Dubai-Sharjah ferry ride returns: Ordinary commute turns out to be a unique glimpse into UAE life

On board the ferry, you'll find everything you need: life jackets, free WiFi, toilets, even some refreshments

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Photos by Shihab
Photos by Shihab

SM Ayaz Zakir



Published: Fri 4 Aug 2023, 6:55 PM

Last updated: Sun 6 Aug 2023, 3:19 PM

As someone who has shuttled between Dubai and Sharjah countless times through the years, I never expected to see anything different when I take the ferry instead of a car. But I was wrong.

As the ferry transport service between the two emirates resumed on Friday, I hopped in — and I was left in awe. During the ride, I saw a perspective that was so different from the street lights, car bumpers, and tail lights I would usually see on the road.

On board the boat, I saw a different face of the UAE. I watched people loading and unloading containers from a ship. I spotted barges carrying huge rocks and building materials for the construction of some manmade island. There were large vessels setting sail.

At 2pm sharp, the ferry left the Sharjah Marine Station, taking about 40 commuters on board. I paid Dh15 for a silver class ticket.

The families and children who were on the same ride were clearly excited. After all, this is the first time the ferry is hitting the waters again after the service was suspended in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

"We have been waiting for this moment,” said Sharjah resident Nebu K Kuriakose, who were with his family.

He said they once tried the ride and loved the experience. The next time they came back, however, they learnt it was temporarily closed.

“Finally, we could undertake the most awaited journey. It was a very comfortable ride and enjoyable ride,” Kuriakose said.

What you'll find inside

The boat is designed to provide optimum comfort and convenience with two seating options.

The Dh15 Silver Class ticket gives you access to the standard plush seats.

But if you wish to enjoy the ride on luxury leather chairs, go for the Dh25 Gold Class tickets.

There are a total of 84 Silver seats, 14 for Gold, and two slots for wheelchair-bound riders.

Need to stay connected? Free WiFi is provided on board. Safety is also a priority, so you'll find a life jacket under your seat.

There are separate toilets for men, women, and people of determination. There's also a kiosk that offers an assortment of refreshments, including fresh juices, chocolates, chips, coffee, tea, pizza, burgers, and more.

Seeing the unseen

The ride offered panoramic views of the Sharjah skyline on one side and on the other, the vast ocean stretching as far as the eye could see.

The sight of Hamriya Port, plus the containers being moved here are there, gives passengers a glimpse of trade and commerce in the area.

It wasn't all ships and barges, though, as riders were also transported back in time with the sight of some traditional fishing boats.

After approximately 25 minutes of sailing, the new Gold Souk welcomed us to Dubai. But the journey's highlight was around the 28-minute mark, when the majestic Infinity Bridge emerged.

15km in 35 minutes

Covering a distance of around 15km, with water depths ranging from 13 to 20m, the journey allowed me to soak in the sceneries I wouldn't have seen otherwise.

As the boat approached the Ghubaiba Marine Station at 2.35pm, passengers disembarked, concluding a delightful trip.

The marine transport service will run eight daily trips from Monday until Thursday (weekdays), and six trips from Friday until Sunday (weekends).


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