Familiarity of the route, language and food makes Dubai a top quarantine spot for Indians traveling to US
As Dubai opens its gates for Indian travelers, many Indians who had been contemplating getting their parents to the US heaved a sigh of relief.
Beginning Aug. 30, the United Arab Emirates announced that travel to Dubai is open for all visa holders from India including those with a short stay tourist visa as well as employment visas.
Ever since President Joe Biden’s April 30 proclamation restricting entry of most visa holders from India, people have been looking at Dubai as a potential country for the mandatory 14 day quarantine.
However, since UAE hadn’t allowed Indian travelers due to Covid-19 risk, many were forced to look for alternate routes such as Mexico, Turkey, Egypt and Serbia.
Read: Serbia: New quarantine country for US bound Indians (August 31, 2021)
The reason why Dubai was a popular choice for many Indian travelers is because of the familiarity of the route. Many Indians, specially those traveling from Southern states in India take a stopover in Dubai while traveling to the US.
When it comes to flying their elderly parents all by themselves, Dubai seems like an obvious choice because of language and food familiarity.
Sugar Land, Texas based Noor family has been considering flying in their parents to the US. Mahira Noor, a software professional says, “My parents have always flown in to the US via Dubai as their arthritis prevents them, from taking a long haul flight. They are familiar with the route as they have travelled via Dubai multiple times.”
“I am sure they would be more comfortable staying in Dubai for 15 days than any other new, unknown destination for them. It has now suddenly become feasible to get them here after a gap of two years!”
To make matters hassle-free, Dubai allows Indian nationals with a normal passport who are traveling from India to obtain a visa on arrival for a maximum stay of 14 days provided they have a visitor visa issued by the United States.
Other travel essentials include registering on the DXB Smart App. It is also mandatory to download and submit a health declaration form as well as a quarantine undertaking form, both of which can be accessed on the UAE government website.
A negative Covid-19 PCR test with a QR code issued within 48 hours of the time the sample was collected from an approved health facility is also needed.
Passengers arriving in Dubai from India will be required to take another Covid-19 PCR test on arrival at Dubai airport. Until you receive the report, you are required to quarantine in your hotel.
The good news is that once your on-arrival test comes negative, no quarantine is required. It may also be kept in mind that for Indians with a US visa the validity of visa has to be at least six months.
However, Indian nationals who do not have a valid UK/USA visa are still not allowed to travel to Dubai. So any leisure travel from India into Dubai would still have to wait some more.