Dubai Duty Free (DDF) is the world’s largest airport retailer, having surpassed USD 2 billion in sales in 2018. Indian passengers accounted for 18% of those sales. Of the 90 million passengers that passed through Dubai airports in 2018, 12.2 million were Indians. DDF accepts payment in 15 currencies and offers same change only in AED, USD, EUR and GBP.
From July 1, 2019, DDF started accepting Indian Rupees as its 16th currency. INR is now a valid currency for transactions at outlets at all three terminals at Dubai International airport and also at Al Maktoum airport (Dubai World Central).
You can now purchase anything at Dubai Duty-Free with Indian currency notes of denominations INR 100, INR 200, INR 500 and INR 2000 only. Change if any will only be provided in AED. There is a slight markup against AED while purchasing in INR which may be similar if you convert to a different currency and buy the same product.
This is great news for those who travel to Dubai regularly as they can now purchase products in their Indian currency itself rather than having to swap with USD/AED.