5 Rules to Follow When Photographing in Dubai

A picture of Dubai will look great because it is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. There are a lot of stories in the news about people getting arrested for breaking the rules about taking pictures and invading someone’s privacy. These rules apply to everyone, whether you live in the UAE or are just visiting.

Taking a quick picture of a building and looking at it on your smartphone is safe, but some exceptions need to be made. In Dubai and the United Arab Emirates, taking photos or shooting videos in public places is not illegal unless it says otherwise.

Make sure you get permission to film or take pictures first.

Most hotels, resorts, and public places in the United Arab Emirates need permission from management teams and other people to take pictures and set up a photoshoot, but this is not always the case. To do your job, you might need to take some photos. You should get permission from the right people to do so in a public place.

When you go to places like Madinat Souk Jumeirah or other big malls in Dubai, you first need to get permission to take photos there, and then you can visit the place. On the other hand, most hotels don’t let you take pictures with a professional camera on their grounds unless you ask first.

There are exceptions to this rule, though. If you’re going to a community place like one of the malls in Dubai, one of the beaches, or a popular attraction, you can usually take pictures with your smartphone of the view, an event, or a family member. But, if the management or security asks you to delete any images or footage you took, you should do so.

Photos taken without permission are illegal.

A person in the UAE can get into trouble if they take photos or videos that might be offensive to someone else’s privacy. Article 378 of the UAE Penal Code (Federal Law 3 of 1987) and Article 21 of the UAE Cyber Crime Law are two laws in the UAE that help protect an individual’s privacy. Article 378 clarifies that taking a picture of someone without their permission, or in a way that is allowed by law, is an invasion of their privacy or family life.

If you want to take a picture of a woman or her family in public, you can’t do it. People in the United Arab Emirates don’t like it when people take pictures of them. The camera or other device would be taken away, and its recordings would be destroyed. The person who takes the picture or video may also have to pay a fine or be sent to prison.

If you use a visual device to get someone’s private information by taking their picture, copying it, or transferring it, you could be sentenced to six months in prison and fined Dh.500,000. Article 21 of the UAE Cyber Crime Law clarifies that this is a crime.

Make sure you don’t share the footage you took too!

It’s not just illegal taking a third person’s picture without their permission. It’s also illegal to show that footage to someone else without permission. Photo and video sharing without permission are illegal in the United Arab Emirates. Article 43 of the UAE Copyright Law says that if a photographer or videographer takes a picture of someone else and doesn’t get permission first, they can’t keep, show, exhibit, communicate, distribute or publish the picture without permission from the person in the picture. A person who consigns such an offense will be held for six months and fined, but not more than a year.

However, there is some exclusion to this rule. For example, if the picture was taken at a public event if the picture is of official people, public figures, celebrities, or if the authorities allow the publication of pictures in the public interest. Another thing to bear in care is that you should not post another person’s work-related picture or video without their permission, and you should not tag someone on the internet without their permission.

It is illegal to film government and military locations.

Photos of major installations, important and strategic places like military bases, government organizations, and political buildings aren’t allowed because they could threaten security. People in the United Arab Emirates don’t have to take pictures of things that aren’t supposed to be taken. If you want to go off-roading or camping in the desert, you should be careful not to take pictures of the areas marked with dots by the emirate. Take care not to be fooled by the picture of a camel you just saw. It could be a military base that you don’t know about.

An airport’s restricted zones need prior approval.

We see a lot of statements in airports that say that if you want to take pictures while you’re in the air, you need a license from Dubai Airports. The term “airside” refers to areas used by planes, like taxiways, runways, and ramps. It’s not true that check-in areas are part of it. A spokesman for Dubai Airport said that anyone who wants to film or take pictures of planes inside or outside the airport would need permission from the right people.

The Dubai International Airport and Al Maktoum International at DWC are safe and secure locations with limited access to protect the safety and security of passengers, staff, and stakeholders. Take care not to take pictures in places like immigration or security, embassies, airports, or security facilities, because these places aren’t safe to take pictures. A fine of less than Dh.5000 is possible if you do this.

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