Best Banks in UAE 2022-23 - A Complete Guide & Overview

Written by Muhammad Qadeer

The United Arab Emirates is rapidly evolving into a financial hub of the Middle East. Banks, financial institutions and insurance service providers cater to the demands of an ever growing heterogeneous population. Banks in particular offer a myriad of perks to its customers all year round – enabling everyone to pursue their ambitions.

In this blog, we look at the best banks in UAE in terms of products offered, customer service, accessibility and technology.

Top 6 Banks in UAE for Expats

1. Emirates National Bank of Dubai (ENBD 2. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) 3. Dubai Islamic Bank
4. Standard Chartered 5. Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) 6. Mashreq Neo

1. Emirates National Bank of Dubai (ENBD)

Emirates National Bank of Dubai (ENBD)

With presence in more than 10 countries over 3 continents, ENBD is by far the largest and most reliable bank originating from the UAE. The bank was formed in 2007 after a merger between the National Bank of Dubai and Emirates Bank International. Headquartered in Dubai, the bank offers a plethora of services to its customers. From priority banking solutions to bespoke investment management solutions; the bank caters to individuals, corporations, HNWIs and institutions. Furthermore, the bank has the most number of ATMs in the country. Even if you’re camping on the outskirts of Fujairah, you’ll find an ENBD ATM nearby.

What’s Unique About Them

A wide range of products on offer and countrywide access to services.

Nearby Communities

2. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB)

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB)

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) is a bank that has a rich history of contributing to the development of the UAE itself. The majority shares of the bank are held by Abu Dhabi Investment Council, which works in tandem with the Abu Dhabi government to undertake development projects in the country.. With total assets in excess of $75 billion, the bank offers retail, commercial, Islamic Banking, and investment management solutions to clients through its various business segments. One of the highlights of the bank is its customer service. ADCB steps out of the silos of traditional banking, and goes the extra mile to assist customers. One of their main strengths is customer service – no matter which branch you go, you wouldn’t have to wait in long queues for your turn, a customer representative will always be available to you.

What’s Unique About Them

Exceptional customer service

Nearby Communities

3. Dubai Islamic Bank

Dubai Islamic Bank

Established in 1975, Dubai Islamic Bank holds the distinction of being the first bank to offer personalized Islamic finance options, and is also the largest Islamic Bank in the UAE. Headquartered in Dubai, the bank’s Islamic banking policies and solutions serve as benchmarks for other Shariah compliant banks to follow.

The bank guarantees attractive profit rates based on Shariah compliant investments, and also offers account opening facility for minors with no hidden or maintenance charges.

What’s Unique About Them

The leading Shariah compliant bank in the UAE

Nearby Communities

4. Standard Chartered

Standard Chartered

As one of the leading international banks in the world, Standard Chartered offers exceptional banking solutions to its clients; with a keen focus on customer service and automation of processes. It was one of the first banks to introduce automated teller machines; and continues to lead the way in terms of technology and innovation.

The bank’s popular products include Standard Chartered Xtra Saver Account, which offers an attractive interest-rate of 1.2% per annum. The account can availed in USD and AED; with the bank providing an international debit card to go with it. Standard Chartered Saadiq Personal Finance provides personal finance options based on Islamic principles. This account lets customers attain a yearly profit of 7.55%; and provides a free cheque book and debit card. Moreover, the bank offers various priority banking facilities that offers a cashback of up to AED 7000.

Moreover, SC offers comprehensive and fool-proof insurance solutions. These include Futura; which provides lifetime insurance coverage, and Global Choice; which lets customers give their children a head-start with a regular savings policy.

What’s Unique About Them

A globally recognized bank that ticks all boxes

Nearby Communities

5. Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB)

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB)

With more than 70 branches and 460 ATMs across the UAE, ADIB is one of the oldest and most trusted banks in the UAE. The bank combines Shariah compliant financial products with contemporary banking solutions to offer customers the best of both worlds. The bank has a strong focus on young demographic – and offers the country’s only student ISIC Card, which lets students learn, grow and succeed with effective money management skills. The ISIC student card is recognized in over 10 countries globally and offers a range of exiting discounts both home and abroad.

ADIB also offers a GTB service, which is short for Global Transaction Banking that offers cost-effective and seamless cash and trade management solutions to meet the working capital requirements of corporate and financial institutions.

What’s Unique About Them

Combines Islamic finance with contemporary banking solutions to meet the needs of customers.

6. Mashreq Neo

Mashreq Neo

An offshoot of the oldest bank in UAE, Mashreq Neo is the first digital bank in the UAE. The bank is completely branchless and paperless; and offers all the conventional banking services as well as several unique offerings to attract a young customer-base. The smartphone bank application offers plenty of exciting solutions; such as Quick Remit; which allows individuals to send money to more than 20 countries without any charge. This facility offers excellent exchange rates, and is used by expats to send and receive money in a blink of an eye.

Other than that, Mashreq Neo has a lot of early bird discounts and cashback offers – even referring the app to a friend entitles you to reward points and cashback. In terms of security, the digital bank has been ranked as the leading and most secure mobile banking app in the Middle East by World Finance in 2020. Users of the Mashreq Neo smart bank praise it for its simplicity, intuition and safety features; with the app being updated every week to eliminate any loopholes.

What’s Unique About Them

A full-fledged bank in an app that holds green credentials, saves time and offers plenty of rewards and cashbacks to its customers.

The banking sector in UAE is growing at an unprecedented rate, but there are only a few that can live up to the billing of the perfect bank. Emirates National Bank of Dubai (ENBD), Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB), Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB), Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB), and Mashreq Neo are our top picks.

International Banks in Dubai

The presence of international banks in Dubai indicates the city's attractiveness as a global financial centre. With a deep understanding of local markets and strong relationships with key stakeholders, international banks are well-positioned to help everyone to achieve their visions.

HSBC, for example, has been operating in Dubai for over 50 years. These international banks offer a wide range of services to businesses and individuals in Dubai. From corporate banking and investment services to personal banking and lending, they can cater to the needs of almost any customer. They play a vital role in supporting businesses and helping the investors to grow and prosper. They also provide essential financial services to individuals, enabling them to live and work in Dubai.

Have a look at the list of top 10 international banks in Dubai:

  • ​HSBC Middle East
  • BNB Paribas Middle East
  • Standard Chartered Bank
  • Citibank N.A
  • Royal Bank of Canada
  • Credit Suisse AG
  • Arab African International Bank
  • Habib Bank A.G. Zurich
  • BanqueLibanaise Pour Le Commerce