(Updated as of December 24; source: Emirates website and National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority advisories)
Countries around the world have started re-imposing travel restrictions and lockdowns as the Omicron variant of Covid-19 spreads.
The UAE has imposed restrictions on passengers travelling from countries witnessing a surge in Covid cases, including suspension of entry of travellers.
On the other hand, a typhoon in the Philippines has resulted in several flights being cancelled, affecting the travel plans of expats in the UAE.
Here is the list of countries where travel restrictions to and from the UAE apply.
All inbound flights to the UAE for national and international carriers and transit passengers of Congo remain suspended since December 17.
This includes suspension of entry of travellers who were in the Central African country 14 days before coming to the UAE. Flight operations from the UAE to the country will continue.
Citing a directive from the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority (DCAA), Emirates said “all air transport services with inbound and transit passenger movements to the emirate of Dubai from any point in the Republic of Kenya are temporarily suspended up to and including December 24”. Outbound passenger operations from Dubai to Nairobi remain unaffected.
Lagos and Abuja, Nigeria
A recently-imposed directive limits Emirates to operate one flight per week to Nigeria via Abuja.
Until the UAE and Nigerian authorities work on a solution to the ongoing issue, “Emirates will be suspending its flights between Nigeria and Dubai from December 13”.
Customers holding tickets with the final destinations Lagos and Abuja will not be accepted at the point of origin.
Nigeria, Kenya, Rwanda and Ethiopia
New travel requirements are in place for those coming to the UAE from the four countries. These include having a negative Covid-19 test result obtained within 48 hours and a Rapid-PCR test at the airport within six hours of the departure.
Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Nigeria
Suspension of all inbound flights for national and international carriers and transit passengers from Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Nigeria starting Saturday, December 25, effective 7.30am.
Entry is also restricted for travellers who were in the four countries 14 days before coming to the UAE, while flight operations will continue to transport passengers from the UAE to the same countries.
Effective December 23, 2021, “only Cebuano Overseas Filipino Workers and returning Filipinos will be allowed to enter Cebu as per directive from local authorities in Philippines”, according to Emirates Airline website.
The directive is in place until January 3, 2022. No other nationality is permitted to travel on these flights. The decision by the Cebu provincial government was in response to brimming hotel occupancy rates from local bookings by residents who still do not have access to electricity and water after the onslaught of Typhoon Rai.