Mandy’s Top Ten Tips for Filming in Dubai

Need to film in Dubai? Not sure where to start? At Seraph, we’re here to help so here are some useful tips for when you need a little support filming in Dubai.

  1. Before you even think about placing your favourite Sachtler on the sand you must obtain Police filming permissions from the Dubai Film Commission.
  2. Filming permissions are only available to companies holding a Dubai Trade Licence and can’t be issued to companies outside the UAE.
  3. Your permissions can take a week or more to obtain so we wouldn’t recommend booking any flights until your permit is stamped, signed and in your possession.
  4. With lots of Dubai’s biggest landmarks built on private property requiring additional location fees, your budget could soon be towering higher than the Burj Khalifa . . . if only there was a production company that knew where to get these “must have” iconic shots from a public street . . . there is!
  5. Avoiding getting your message lost in translation is essential; at Seraph we know our cameras from our Karamas, one’s an essential piece of kit, the other’s the place to go if you’re a tourist for “bargains”.
  6. Shooting and delivery standards vary greatly in the UAE, so make sure your crew and kit’s spec match your final product expectations and broadcaster’s regulations.
  7. Dubai’s roads can become congested in a blink of eye with accidents common and rubber-necking a national pastime, so allow time in your schedule to double those Google Maps estimated drive times and all should go to plan.
  8. Obvious but worth a mention . . . our glorious weather!!! Picking the right month to schedule your shoot will pay dividends in the edit. Looking for beautiful, clear, blue skies then think winter; if a murky haze is the atheistic that you’re after the summer’s for you!
  9. Water, water, everywhere! You best have loads to drink! A happy crew is a well-hydrated crew. If you have to get those pesky exteriors over the summer months, we’d recommend plenty of water for crew . . . and you’ll be swimming in beautiful shots! (Sorry, I couldn’t resist!)
  10. Oh, and don’t forget the Factor 50!!! Leave the red faces for those that work with our competitors! (Just kidding!) And there you have it! My top ten tips to seamless shoots in Dubai!

Got any further questions . . . drop me an email, I’m more than happy to help . . .