UAE Travel Guide: Indians Should Take Covid-19 Test At Airport Six Hours Before Departure

Not just Indians but citizens from Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Uganda can now board a flight to the UAE without worrying about taking the Covid-19 test. UAE residents planning to fly back to the UAE can now take the Covid-19 test six hours prior to their departure at the airport. However, they must reach the airport on time for the test. 

Read More: NRI Guide: All You Need To Know About UAE’s Visa Reforms

Various airlines have updated their guidelines for passengers from the above-mentioned countries, clarifying that they can undergo the test within six hours before the time of departure. Here’s a list of airlines that have updated their guidelines for UAE residents. 

Etihad Airways 

Image Credits: Etihad Airways

As per Etihad’s website, passengers have to take an RT-PCR test within six hours of boarding their flight. It further clarified that the RT-PCR tests must be taken at an airport facility. Any test taken outside the airport will not be accepted. If you are traveling to the UAE, pre-register for your Covid-19 test and arrive at the airport accordingly (at least six hours before your flight) to ensure that you receive the results on time. 

When you land in Abu Dhabi, you will have to quarantine for 12 days and wear a medically approved wristband throughout your quarantine period. The band will be given by the authorities at Abu Dhabi airport after undergoing your immigration process. You must also take three PCR tests: upon arrival, on Day 6 and Day 11. 


Image Credits: Emirates

Emirates website says that all passengers with a valid UAE residence visa are allowed to enter Dubai from India, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Nigeria however: 

  • Dubai visa holders must apply for pre-entry approval from the GDRFA 
  • Travellers with a UAE visa sponsored by Dubai Expo 2020 do not need to seek GDRFA’s approval to enter Dubai 
  • Must have a valid Covid-19 test certificate issued within 48 hours prior to the departure. Only Covid-19 PCR test reports with a QR code will be accepted 
  • Needs to complete a Covid-19 test at the departure airport before the departure of their flight. The RT-PCR test can be taken within six hours before boarding a flight. However, rapid antigen tests will not be accepted. 
  • Take a Covid-19 test in Dubai on arrival 
  • UAE nationals are relaxed from the above requirements but subject to Covid-19 PCR test on arrival in Dubai 

Air India Express 

Taking to Twitter, Air India Express said that passengers travelling to the UAE from India are requested to report at the airport at least six hours prior to the departure. It further said that a rapid PCR test will be conducted for each passenger at the airport before they board a flight to Dubai. The test counters will be set up four hours before departure time and would close two hours prior to departure.

Connect with NRI experts via WhatsApp | Click here