COVID-19 UAE: 47 tourism venues in Dubai shut in 2 months

COVID safety inspections have been stepped up across the city

Modern Buildings By River Against Sky In City. Image used for illustrative purpose.

Modern Buildings By River Against Sky In City. Image used for illustrative purpose.

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Authorities in Dubai shut down 47 tourism establishments and venues in two months as they stepped up Covid safety inspections.

Overall, Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) and other authorities conducted 10,000 inspections of hotels and recreational facilities.

A total of 274 violations were recorded, with about 89 per cent facilities committed to all safety rules.

Dubai had shut down 62 tourist venues over violations last year.

Since the reopening of the city to domestic tourism in May and international tourists in July, the Dubai Tourism adopted a zero-tolerance approach to non-compliance with health and safety protocols. Heavy fines and penalties were also imposed against violators of precautionary guidelines.

The authority has joined forces with the police, municipality and Dubai Economy to inspect venues that attract large gatherings. Penalties for violations range from fines to final warnings, suspension of permits and closure.

Following the socially distanced New Year's Eve celebrations, the Dubai Tourism has increased its inspection campaigns. This ensures that hotels and establishments across tourism touchpoints including retail, leisure, attractions and events are complying with wide-ranging health and safety protocols.

Safety rules extended

A new set of precautionary measures against Covid-19 was recently extended until the beginning of Ramadan in mid-April. The new rules cover various sectors and activities with shopping malls, hotel establishments, swimming pools and private beaches in hotels required to operate at 70 per cent capacity.

Indoor venues, including cinemas and entertainment and sports venues, will continue to operate at 50 per cent of maximum capacity; while pubs and bars will remain closed during this period.

Tourism recovery

Dubai was one of the world's first cities to develop a detailed pandemic strategy, including a three-phase recovery plan for its tourism sector.

"With the health and safety of residents and visitors being Dubai’s first priority, several steps were taken to curb the spread of Covid-19, including organising outreach campaigns and large-scale sterilisation programmes, as well as introducing necessary regulations and guidelines. The effective management of the pandemic led to the gradual reopening of various sectors and activities, including the tourism sector," the Dubai Tourism said.

The authority has sought the cooperation of all its stakeholders to ensure that both staff and visitors to their establishments adhere to the precautionary measures at all times to enable both residents and visitors to enjoy the diversity of Dubai’s offerings within a safe environment. This was also aimed at enhancing the city’s readiness to receive domestic guests and global travellers.

Safe city

Apart from regular inspections, Dubai Tourism continues to take various other steps to instil confidence among residents and visitors that Dubai is one of the safest cities in the world.

The success of its citywide management of the pandemic was recognised by the World Travel and Tourism Council’s (WTTC) which awarded the city a ‘Safe Travels’ stamp. The 'DUBAI ASSURED' stamp certifies hotels, retail stores, food and beverage (F&B) outlets, attractions, event venues and other relevant establishments that have complied with all health and safety guidelines.

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