At 4 am on Sunday the 8th of August, The United Arab Emirates (UAE) will all be moving onto the UK amber list of travel destinations. With such popular destinations like Abu Dhabi and the luxury hotspot, Dubai, now more accessible to double vaccinated travellers, this is some exciting news that’s gotten a lot of attention since the news came out on the 4th of August, specifically, for the travel requirements in Dubai and the UAE.

A lot of this attention is surrounding the new restrictions for entering the UAE and returning to the UK alike. With the UAE classed as one destination under the traffic light system, it’s easy to miss the different restrictions for each emirate. We always encourage consumers to investigate destination restrictions themselves as well as keeping up to date through professionals and the media. You can do this on the Foreign Travel Advice page that is kept up to date. 

Entering the UK From the UAE

If you’re entering the UK after being in any of the UAE, then these restrictions follow the amber list rules in place of the 8th of August 2021. This will vary depending on if you’re double vaccinated or not.  

If you are double vaccinated, the requirements will mimic the green list requirements as follows: 

  • A pre-departure lateral flow test no more than 72 hours before returning to the UK 
  • A PCR test on or before day 2 of arrival back in the UK 

Also, keep in mind that you must have gotten your second dose of the vaccination at least 14 days before your departure for this to apply to you. 

If you’d like to find out more about the quarantine-free amber restrictions for double vaccinated travellers you can visit our blog for extra details. 

At present, the amber restrictions for any unvaccinated travellers arriving in the UK are as follows: 

  • Upon returning to the UK, you will be required to quarantine for 10 days within the confines of your home. 
  • Three PCR tests must be done. This will include a test before departure, another 2 days after your return to the UK, and another 8 days after your return. 
  • Early release from quarantine can be obtained by purchasing an additional “test to release“, 5 days after your return to the UK. You will, of course, have to produce a negative test result (This also doesn’t negate the need for a test on or after day 8, just provides release from quarantine). 

Entering the UAE From the UK

This is where it’s important to stay informed, the restrictions for each of the 7 emirates does vary, especially the travel requirements for Dubai and Abu Dhabi. The good news is that Dubai, a popular luxury destination, has straightforward and open plans for UK travellers once it is on our amber list on Sunday.  

The requirements for Dubai are as follows: 

  • You do not need to be vaccinated to enter Dubai 
  • Evidence of a negative PCR test taken no more than 72 hours before departure to Dubai must be provided at check-in 
  • Fill out a Health Declaration Form before departing the UK and this must be handed in when you arrive in Dubai 

If you are travelling to Abu Dhabi, you must also take a PCR test on arrival. If you are travelling to Dubai, you may be required to do a PCR test on arrival if you show any symptoms of Covid.  

If you test positive on arrival in either of these emirates, then you will be required to isolate for 10 days in a government-provided hotel.  

Once you have entered Abu Dhabi, you will be required to self-isolate in private accommodation or a government-provided hotel. If you are double vaccinated, this will be for 7 days with a PCR test on day 6. Unvaccinated travellers must quarantine for 12 days with a PCR test on day 11. These tests must come back negative to end the quarantine. 

Restrictions for the 5 other emirates in the UAE are more strict and less defined at present. The requirements and restrictions in the other emirates could be but are not limited to the following: 

  • PCR tests upon arrival; or 
  • Mandatory quarantine periods, typically 10 days but subject to fluctuation based on the local laws in your destination 

We always advise that consumers remain aware and well informed when you are booking a holiday. From having necessary health insurance to knowing your destinations restrictions, and booking with a trusted PTS member who will also remain up-to-date and provide as much protection as possible.  

The UAE moving to the amber list is great news and many of us are excited for such well-loved destinations as Dubai and Abu Dhabi to open, though the travel requirements in Dubai may differ from the other emirates, so we highly encourage you to investigate restrictions yourselves if you plan to travel to the UAE outside of Dubai and Abu Dhabi. 

So, whether it’s for this year or the next when you’re planning your next holiday, don’t forget to get in contact with a fabulous PTS member. Or, if you need help choosing one of our lovely members, you can call PTS directly at 0207 190 9988. 

And if you’d like to learn more about the package travel regulations or why you should be booking with a PTS travel agent during covid, don’t forget to check out our blog. 

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