Are you planning a trip from Dubai to Georgia? If yes, you are on a right place to know everything about the trip. I visited Georgia in Aug-Sep of 2019 with a friend. In this guide I will explain how you can go from Dubai to Georgia on your own. You do not need to spend a lot of money with Holiday packages when you can plan it on your own for much less money.
Although this guide explains how to travel from Dubai to Georgia but most part of this guide can be followed by people visiting from other places.
1- Getting the Visa
Georgia is tourist friendly country and for many nationalities they provide visa on arrival. UAE residents and expatriates are eligible for visa on arrival. Other nationalities can check their eligibility here.
Although Georgian immigration laws state that visa is not required for UAE residents but still there have been incidents when people reported to be deport back from the Tbilisi airport. Khaleej times did a report on similar issue here.
2- Ticket and Travel Insurance
Buy a ticket from any airline with a travel insurance and you are done. From Dubai to Tbilisi the cost of the ticket is around 1000 AED and travel insurance is under 50 AED. We booked the ticket only a week ago from our travel date and FlyDubai cost us 1400 AED including insurance.
3- Before Travelling
You do not need an extensive planning to visit Georgia but every trip needs some kind of planning. It starts with booking the place where you will be living. We booked an apartment on Air BnB for 4 nights and three days in 500 AED. There are much cheaper options available on booking.com and AirBnb. If you choose hostel then your stay will be much much cheaper.
Where to Stay in Tbilisi?
I would say you book your stay near to Freedom Square or Meidani square. Both of these places are near to many attractions in Tbilisi and all the tourist operators are always available. Also, if you are looking to enjoy night life of Tbilisi these two places are at walking distance from Sherdani street, the center of night life in Tbilisi.
If you want to travel on a budget then you must plan your daily expense. Georgia is a cheap country for tourists. If you are eating in a normal restaurant the meal will cost you under 15 Lari which is around 18 AED. Other than food, you need to plan for places you will be visiting. City tours, inter city travels, parks, museums each will cost you somewhere between 30 to 70 Lari.
If you are traveling for five days, I would suggest you to keep aside 500 AED per person for five days. These 500 AED do not include clubbing and night life related expenses.
Do you need a Guide?
You can can travel without a guide but its always good to have a guide. Finding a good guide is very difficult in Georgia but we met the perfect guide, Dadona Namoradze on a boat ride. If you want to be care free of all the planning of where to go where not to go, what to do what not to do you can book her. WHer WhatsApp is: +995555147705. Below are some pictures of her with tourists.
4- Immigration for Pakistani, Syrian and Yemeni travelers.
This is sad but true that for Pakistani, Syrian and Yemenis (May be some other countries also) immigration process is a little strict. Immigration officers will separate you from the rest, they will take your passport and will ask you to wait.
When everybody else will be cleared from the immigration, only then they will call you at the immigration counter.
To save a little bit of embarrassment instead of waiting in the queue directly go to any of the officials and ask them you hold passport from one of the specific country, where should I go?
5- Immigration for Family
In normal circumstances everybody gets pass to the immigration counter but not everyday is a sunny day. There have been reports they sent back some families on a very next flight because they do not have enough cash. One of my friend was travelling with his family and he was deported because he does not have 300 Lari per person in cash. So If you are with family make sure you have enough cash.
6- Getting to the place where you will be staying
Do not take taxi from the taxi riders coming to you. They are very expensive. Because many tourists do not know the actual cost of a taxi ride they end up paying a lot more than the actual. Instead you can take a metro from the Airport or you can download the ride hail app called Bolt. We took the taxi from Airport to Freedom Square and we end up paying 100 Lari. When coming back, we booked the Bolt taxi from Freedom Square to Airport and that only costed us 23 Lari.
That’s all for part 1, in next part I will be writing about the places we visited and places we missed. If you have any question or feedback you can write below in the comments section.