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Reviewed 9 June 2022

As travel in the UAE has largely resumed, there are still some safety measures and requirements that have to be followed for entry into the country. UAE residents travelling to the UAE from all countries are no longer subject to approval from the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICA) or approval from the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA).

If you are looking to travel to the UAE, here are the arrival registration procedures you should be aware of.

ICA Smart Services arrival registration

As confirmed by the flag carriers of the UAE, the GDRFA or ICA approval is no longer required by the UAE residents travelling to the UAE. Therefore, UAE residents from all over the globe can now travel to the UAE  without pre-travel or registration on the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship, Customs and Ports Security (ICP/ICA) portal.

Complete Guide to ICA Smart Services for Travellers to the UAE

However, emirates like Sharjah and Abu Dhabi still require residents or tourists to register their vaccination and entry status in the ICA smart services portal.

Abu Dhabi

As per Etihad’s travel update page, obtaining approval from the ICA is not required to enter Abu Dhabi. Instead, residents or tourists must register their arrival and vaccination status through ICA Smart Travel Services (ICA Smart Services) This applies to both vaccinated and non-vaccinated arrivals even if they are planning on travelling to Dubai or other emirates.

Unless you are a UAE national, it is recommended that you register via the ICA Smart Travel Service before you fly to Abu Dhabi.

By registering via the ICA, you’ll be able to use the Al Hosn app when you land in Abu Dhabi. You’ll be required to present the Al Hosn app or the official health app from your country of residence to prove your vaccination status before you enter any public place in Abu Dhabi.

You must prove that you’re fully vaccinated and hold a negative PCR test result issued within 30 days before you enter public places in Abu Dhabi, including shopping malls, exhibitions and restaurants. You can do this by presenting the health app from your country of residence, or the Al Hosn app. In case, you would like to use the Al Hosn app, you must register via the ICA before you fly to Abu Dhabi. However, it is not mandatory to register.

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Dubai

International travellers to Dubai are NO longer required to obtain the GDRFA or ICA approval for travelling to Dubai.

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Sharjah and Ras al Khaimah

As per Air Arabia’s travel guidelines, obtaining approval from the ICA is not required to enter Sharjah. Instead, all travellers arriving in Sharjah and Ras Al Khaimah with a newly issued e-visa must register through ICA Smart Travel Services (ICA Smart Services) prior to departure.

Moreover, Air Arabia has instructed returning passengers to visit the ICA Smart Services website before booking a flight to verify their entry status and carry a photocopy of their passport and resident visa onboard the flight.

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