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Updated 1 June 2021

The United Arab Emirates, Dubai specifically, is a prominent name on the list of countries now open to tourists. Considering the fact that the Dubai is one of the most popular destinations for UK travellers, it is only understandable that the COVID-19 restrictions have caused inconvenience to many.

Here, we break down the rules you’ll have to adhere to while flying from the UK to Dubai.

Can I travel to Dubai?

Yes, you can. Dubai allows all categories of passengers. Leisure travellers and vacationers, too, can visit this modern-day paradise.

Prior to your arrival in Dubai, you’ll need to download the DXB Smart App on iOS or Android.

Note that you are no longer required to international travel declaration form to travel abroad from England.

Testing requirements

All UK travellers, arriving or transiting through Dubai, must hold a negative COVID-19 PCR test certificate for a test taken no more than 72 hours before departure.

You will have to take the test with a private provider in the UK. The NHS Test and Trace service does not provide the required documents.

The certificate must be of a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test, as other test results such as antibody tests and home testing kits are not accepted in Dubai.

Carry the official, printed certificate, as SMS and digital formats are not acceptable. Certificates in languages other than English and Arabic are accepted only if they can be validated at the originating station. It need not have a QR code.

The following passengers have been exempted from the pre-departure testing:

  • UAE nationals (though, they will have to take a test on arrival in Dubai)
  • Children under the age of 12
  • Passengers who have a moderate or severe disability*

*moderate or severe disabilities includes neurological disorders and intellectual or developmental disabilities. All other passengers, including those who are visually impaired, hearing impaired or physically challenged must comply with the testing protocols.

Quarantine regulations

Travellers coming straight from British turf are generally not required to take a second test on Emirati soil.

However, in certain cases such as UAE nationals not carrying negative test certificate, or those who exhibit symptoms of COVID-19 on arrival, an airport test will be required.

If you do need to take a test, then you’ll be asked to quarantine in your hotel or residence until the results are delivered.

UK regulations for outbound passengers

The UK government advises limiting travel to essential reasons only but doesn’t enforce any restrictions on leisure holidays. However, wearing masks on flights from England and Scotland is non-negotiable.

You are no longer required to international travel declaration form to travel abroad from England.

Flights from the UK to Dubai

British Airways doesn’t have any direct journeys from the UK to Dubai. Instead, it has connecting flights operated by other airlines, but mind the tediously long layovers.

  • London to Dubai: three daily flights, available 7 days a week
  • Manchester to Dubai: upto five daily flights, available 7 days a week
  • Edinburgh to Dubai: upto five daily flights, available 7 days a week
  • Glasgow to Dubai: upto five daily flights, available 7 days a week
  • Belfast to Dubai: upto four daily flights, available 7 days a week

Other connecting flights are also available with Pegasus Air, Turkish Airlines, SkyUp Airlines, Ukraine International Airlines, KLM, RyanAir, and Air France.

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