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By - Neelam Motwani

Step-by-step Guidance for Residents Flying Back to UAE

UAE is now welcoming all the residents back to the country. However, the COVID-19 pandemic is still not over, and thus, the process of returning to UAE has altered for every resident. Speaking of COVID-19 infections, UAE has recovered from most of the infected cases and is focused on boosting the economic activities to go back to the normal norms. However, there are some twist and tweaks if you are also planning to go back to UAE under Step-by-step Guidance for Residents Flying Back to UAE

If you are reading this blog, you might be confused as to how to go back to UAE again and what approvals will be required for same. We have penned all the details for a better understanding on same. 

 

Travel Guidance for residents of UAE

 

GDRFA Approval: You might have heard about this term a lot by now. But it is important to understand what is this approval and why is it vital to return to UAE? GDRFA (General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs) requires a filled application of residents who are planning to go back to Dubai, even before booking a flight ticket to the country. 

 

Earlier, the process of Entry/Exit to UAE required approval from Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship. On 23 June 2020, the process was altered when GDRFA tweeted about the entire process for residents to come back to Dubai. People with Dubai resident visa can fill their application on GDRFA website.

 

Once the application is approved, residents will receive an instant response on their application. If not, people can apply for approval again. To check the status of your application, you must ent6er GDRFA reference number, which is generated when you fill the application for the first time. 

 

If you hold a resident visa of the Emirate other than Dubai, you will need ICA approval before booking the ticket. Along with ICA approval, residents must have a valid PCR test report from the government approved lab as well.

 

Flight booking: If you are browsing ways to go back to UAE, you must already be aware that there are only limited flights from each country offering this service. For instance, if you are an Indian citizen and Dubai Resident, your point of contact for flight are Air India and Emirates. 

 

Since you have packed your bags and all set to book the ticket, you must keep GDRFA approval handy with you. Please note, a flight booking will not be successful without GDRFA approval. Every passenger must submit GDRFA approval to the airline to complete the process of flight booking. 

 

PCR Certificate: Once your flight is booked, you might need to show a negative PCR certificate, if you are traveling from the following countries: 

 

  • Afghanistan
  • Bangladesh
  • Egypt
  • India
  • Iran
  • Nigeria
  • Pakistan
  • Philippines
  • Russian Federation
  • Sudan
  • Tanzania
  • USA

 

Without a negative test certificate, the passenger will not be accepted in the flight according to new visa rules for UAE. This certificate must be issued by the government-approved laboratory only. UAE has also specified some of the designated laboratories in some of the listed countries. The certificate must be issued from the listed labs only not more than 86 hours before the departure of your flight. 

 

Health Declaration Form & Quarantine undertaking form

 

All travellers to UAE must complete a health declaration form to submit the same to flight staff during check-in. This Health Declaration Form is available at all airline counters at the airport. 
The passengers will also be given quarantine undertaking form by the airline staff once they board the flight to UAE. Both of these forms must be submitted to the Dubai Health Authority on arrival. The passengers will not be allowed to enter Dubai if the mentioned forms are not duly filled and attested by the authorities. 

 

Arrival in UAE

 

Travelers will be requested to take the PCR COVID-19 test again at the airport. Residents will also be requested to stay inside their homes until they receive the PCR test result. In case the result is positive, the residents will be required to undergo isolation and follow the guidelines of Dubai Healthcare Authority. At all times, passengers are requested to follow social distancing followed by wearing mask at all times.

 

Residents are also requested to download COVID-19 DXB Smart App on arrival. This application will help the residents to keep a track of COVID-19 cases around them. In addition to same, this application will allow the UAE government to track the residents coming back to UAE and approaching them on time in case of any positive case. 

 

Residents traveling out of Dubai

 

In case you are a resident of UAE planning to travel outside UAE and return back, all the above-mentioned norms will be applicable on your return journey followed by a home quarantine rule until their test results are back. In addition to same, UAE residents do not need to showcase PCR test or approval of UAE government to leave the country. However, it is mandate to check all the travel requirements guided by the country you are itinerant to. 
Please note that if your resident visa expired while you were back in your home country and wish to travel back to UAE, you have to apply for the renewal first. One must get in touch with UAE Embassy and firm representing their visas. Please note that you cannot travel to UAE if your resident visa is expired. 

 

People on tourist visa cannot travel to UAE as of now as the flights are operations only for resident visa holders. If you are a tourist stranded in UAE and wish to go back, you must get in touch with the national airlines and government of your native. Various countries are operating repatriation flights for people who wish to go back to their country and tourist stuck in UAE.

 

Meanwhile, UAE is maintaining and following all the restrictions to curb the spread of COVID-19 pandemic while adhering to new visa rules for UAE. COVID-19 cases have crossed 14 million mark as on 18 July 2020 while many countries are firing up the vaccine race. Meanwhile, the vaccine is under process, it is highly advised to stay safe in your respective homes and leave only when required. 

Declaration: All rules mentioned in the blog are subject to change as per the discretion of UAE government. AlShorts takes no responsibility for any legal action upon use of above mentioned guidelines.