Good news for passengers flying to Abu Dhabi. Covid-vaccinated and unvaccinated passengers need not take a test after arriving at the Abu Dhabi International Airport.

They can opt to take a test at their own expense. It will cost Dh40 to take the test at the ‘Arrivals’ PCR facility, a spokesperson for Etihad Airlines told Khaleej Times.

This means travelling to Abu Dhabi is now a PCR test-free affair for vaccinated travellers. Previously, authorities had announced that pre-departure PCR tests are not required for fully vaccinated passengers.

“Guests who are not vaccinated travelling to Abu Dhabi must present a negative PCR test taken within 48 hours of departure, or a Covid-19 recovery certificate with a QR code dated within 30 days of departure. Children younger than 16 are exempt,” the spokesperson added.

Travellers departing from or transiting through Abu Dhabi do not need a PCR test, unless it is a requirement at their end destination.

Terry Daly, executive director, Guest Experience, Brand and Marketing, Etihad Airways, said: “We warmly welcome this move by the UAE authorities to make travelling to and from Abu Dhabi and the UAE even easier, while maintaining a safe environment.

“Abu Dhabi has built a reputation for delivering a robust response to the pandemic with high vaccination rates and a comprehensive approach to health and safety measures. Similarly, through the Etihad Wellness programme, we’ve ensured a healthy inflight environment with fully vaccinated crew to look after our guests on board. With this in mind, we look forward to welcoming more and more visitors to enjoy our beautiful home and sunny climate throughout the year.”

Travelling to Dubai

Information posted on the Emirates website does not mention a mandatory on-arrival test for passengers flying to Dubai. However, if requested, they must undergo one and “self-quarantine until they receive a negative result”.

According to Emirates, tourists or residents landing in Dubai must hold one of the three following documents:

> A vaccination certificate reflecting that the passenger is fully vaccinated with a vaccine approved by the WHO or the UAE, and includes a QR code.

> A negative Covid‑19 PCR test certificate issued within 48 hours before the scheduled flight departure to Dubai and issued by an approved health service provider with a QR code.

> A medical certificate with a QR code issued by the relevant authorities that the passenger has recovered from Covid‑19 within one month from the date of recovery to the date of arrival.


Eased Covid safety rules

The UAE has eased multiple Covid safety rules as the country registered a sharp drop in daily Covid-19 cases.

Cases dipped below the 400-mark on Monday, March 7. The 386 cases recorded on the day was the lowest in nearly three months.

Masks are no longer mandatory in open public spaces. Social distancing norms in economic and tourism sites have also been scrapped, with guests required to wear masks indoors.

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