Updated 3 January 2022
The capital of the United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi, has reopened for international travels. But while tourists and residents alike are permitted to enter Abu Dhabi, strict measures extending to PCR tests and quarantine are currently in effect. It’s worth noting that these measures also apply to travellers from neighboring Dubai.
However, if you are travelling to Abu Dhabi from a country on the green list or if you are fully vaccinated, you would not need to serve quarantine. The following is the full list of green countries, regions and territories allowed entry into Abu Dhabi.
Green List UAE
Abu Dhabi’s green list includes:
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Czech Republic
- Hong Kong (SAR)
- Papua New Guinea
- Republic of Ireland
- Saudi Arabia
- South Korea
- Taiwan, Province of China
- United States of America
Remember that exemptions apply only for passengers coming from countries on the green list. Exemptions are not based on citizenship.
Abu Dhabi has also established quarantine-free travel corridors for fully vaccinated travellers (final dose received at least 28 days before travel) with:
Abu Dhabi entry regulations
Only UAE nationals, residents with a valid residence visa, and those who are eligible for a visa on arrival can enter the UAE through Abu Dhabi’s airports. If you are travelling to Abu Dhabi, you must follow these additional rules:
- have a negative PCR test result issued within 48 hours of departure or a negative DPI test result issued within 24 hours of departure
- download the ALHOSN UAE app on your mobile phones before you travel to Abu Dhabi
- undergo a thermal screening and another COVID-19 PCR testing on arrival at Abu Dhabi airport
Travelling to Abu Dhabi (unless you are travelling from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Nigeria and Uganda) no longer requires approval from Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICA). However, you are recommended to visit uaeentry.ica.gov.ae and submit your passport number and Emirates ID number to receive instant verification of your entry status.
Visa requirements for the green-listed countries
You can fly to Abu Dhabi if you are a UAE national or resident, you are eligible for a visa on arrival or you hold a visit visa for Abu Dhabi. If you are a tourist, your visa must be issued in Abu Dhabi.
Travellers from most countries on the green list are eligible for a visa on arrival. They can simply fly to Abu Dhabi and head to the immigration department.
Entry from Dubai or other Emirates
Fully vaccinated international passengers travelling to Abu Dhabi from Dubai or other Emirates will need to follow these guidelines:
- Download the ICA Smart Services app and complete the registration, this does not apply to UAE nationals or transit travellers.
- Download the Al Hosn app, which is the Green Pass gateway to most of Abu Dhabi’s public places.
- Fully vaccinated travellers and residents coming from other Emirates will not be required to do a PCR test to enter Abu Dhabi.
- All passengers will be scanned by EDE devices at the border to gain permission to enter the emirate. Those showing COVID-19 symptoms will need to undergo a free rapid antigen test.
- Abu Dhabi residents who test positive will fitted with a tracking wristband and will need to quarantine for 10 days. Non-Abu Dhabi residents who receive a positive test result will have to return to the emirate from which they travelled and notify the local health authorities.
Check out our article on the complete rules for travel to Abu Dhabi from Dubai or other Emirates.
Entry from earlier banned countries
The UAE has eased restrictions placed on inbound travellers from six earlier banned countries, as announced by the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA).
Fully vaccinated residence visa holders from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Nigeria and Uganda can return to Abu Dhabi if they have obtained pre-entry approval from the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICA). Note that Dubai visa holders from said countries must also obtain pre‑entry approval through the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA).
Abu Dhabi quarantine and testing regulations
Guidelines for vaccinated passengers
- If you are coming from green countries, you do not need to quarantine yourself. However, you will need to do an RT-PCR test on arrival and on day 6 from arrival.
- If you are coming from other countries, you do not need to quarantine yourself. You will need to do an RT-PCR test on arrival, day 4 and day 8 from arrival.
To be fully vaccinated, you must have received two doses of the same vaccine at least 14 days before departure. Information about the vaccine must be documented on the Al Hosn app.
Guidelines for non-vaccinated passengers
- If you are coming from green countries, you do not need to quarantine yourself. However, you will need to do an RT-PCR test on arrival, days 6 and 9 from arrival.
- If you are coming from other countries, you must quarantine yourself for 10 days. Additionally, you will need to do an RT-PCR test on arrival and on day 9 from arrival.
If you have arrived from a country that the UAE authorities deem are high-risk, then you will be subject to quarantine at a government facility.
The vaccinated protocol applies to all vaccinated UAE citizens and residents in the emirate of Abu Dhabi who received their second vaccine dose at least 28 days earlier, which is documented in the vaccine report on the Al Hosn app.
Children under 12 are exempt from testing unless they show symptoms.