Authorities in Dubai reduced the quarantine period for some coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patients and individuals who came into contact with confirmed patients from 14 days to 10 days as of Jan. 5. The shortened quarantine period applies to COVID-19 patients who are asymptomatic after testing positive and patients with mild cases who fully recover from their symptoms without the help of fever-reducing medications. Individuals who come into close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 patient but did not develop any symptoms also qualify for the shortened quarantine period. Patients with moderate, severe, or critical cases may only be discharged after testing negative for COVID-19 two consecutive times at least 24 hours apart; these individuals must have been fever-free for more than three days and are required to self-isolate for a period of seven days after discharge.
As of Dec. 24, international tourists are permitted entry into Abu Dhabi Emirate as part of ongoing COVID-19 controls. Under the new measures, international travelers from “green” countries must present a negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test result received within 96 hours of their departure for the UAE. The list of “green” countries can be found on the UAE Government website. Upon entering the emirate, travelers will undergo a PCR test. With two negative results, international travelers will not have to quarantine for 10 days. After arrival, travelers from green countries will need to take a third PCR test on day six for those staying for six days or more, and a fourth test on day 12 for those staying for 12 days or more. Country classifications will be subject to review every two weeks.
For visitors entering the emirate from all other countries, procedures include the following: depending on where a person is traveling from, a PCR test must be carried out between 48, 72, or 96 hours ahead of departure. Travelers will undergo a PCR test on arrival to the emirate. An additional PCR test will be required six days after arrival. Another PCR test will be required 12 days after arrival for travelers who are staying for 12 days or more. Travelers will have to wear an electronic wristband throughout their 10-day quarantine. If a traveler receives a negative result, 10 days after arrival in Abu Dhabi, the electronic wristband will be removed by authorities.
Other measures in effect in the UAE include:
Upon arrival at all airports in the UAE, stringent entry restrictions are enforced and may include a PCR test on arrival, a health declaration form, obtaining health insurance with COVID-19 coverage, a mandatory quarantine period for at least 14 days, and follow-up testing before the completion of quarantine.
All travelers to the UAE must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test result within 96 hours before their departure. Residents returning to Dubai still require approval before traveling. Those returning to other parts of the UAE no longer need approval.
All travelers entering Abu Dhabi by road must have a negative PCR test result issued within 48 hours. Travelers may have to quarantine depending on how long they have been in the UAE. If a traveler has just arrived in another emirate and travels straight to Abu Dhabi, they must have a negative COVID‑19 PCR test result issued within 48 hours and take a diffractive phase interferometry (DPI) test at the border. Additional PCR tests will be required depending on the length of an individual’s stay in Abu Dhabi.
If departing from Abu Dhabi to the EU or UK, travelers will need to have a negative PCR test result taken within 96 hours prior to their departure.
Stringent precautionary measures will continue to be enforced in public areas and facilities across the UAE based on guidelines issued by local and federal authorities.
Arrivals in Abu Dhabi from countries that authorities consider high risk are likely to be required to quarantine for at least 14 days. These include but are not limited to Afghanistan, Angola, Argentina, Bangladesh, Cambodia, and Chile. Additional high-risk countries can be found on the UAE Government website.
Most public transportation options have resumed.
Authorities could reimpose, extend, further ease, or otherwise amend any restrictions with little-to-no notice depending on disease activity over the coming weeks.
Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Reconfirm all travel arrangements. Maintain contact with your diplomatic representation. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions.
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.
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