DUBAI // Drivers visiting two of the city's busiest malls will have to obtain pay-and-display tickets for their cars from today - but they will not be charged just yet. The system is being given a trial for one month at the Mall of the Emirates and Deira City Centre, after which charges will apply. The moves are intended to deter Metro commuters from using the malls' car parks as part of an unofficial park-and-ride system.
Anyone parking in the malls must collect a ticket at a machine. Before leaving they must run it through a pay machine and swipe the validated ticket at the exit barrier. There will no charges during the trial and courtesy crews will be on hand to help. From September 9, when the system will be in place permanently to coincide with the opening of the Metro, there will be no charge for up to three hours on a weekday and four hours on a weekend, with an additional hour for cinemagoers.
There will, however, be a charge, yet to be announced, for all-day parking. Fareed Abdelrahman, vice president, divisional asset management, for Majid Al Futtaim Properties, which runs both malls, said: "We have introduced limited free hours so our spaces are not used for park and ride. "By introducing the free trial period we want to minimise any inconvenience for our customers and give them time to familiarise themselves with this new plan."
The Burjuman Centre already operates a Dh20 (US$5) all-day fee to prevent spaces being taken by people who work in nearby offices. email@example.com