UAE: Airlines relax COVID-19 testing rules for passengers

More tourists arrive at Dubai airport today. Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News
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Passengers flying in to the UAE will not have to fret if there is no UAE-designated lab near them to get a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test done, which is now mandatory for all passengers arriving in the UAE.

According to travel guidelines updated by airlines as on August 1, airlines will accept PCR test results from laboratories accredited by governments in the countries of departure in the absence of UAE-designated labs there.

All passengers above 12 years are required to carry a valid negative COVID-19 PCR test report in order to be able to board flights to the UAE.

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Meanwhile, Etihad airways, which had previously made it mandatory for its passengers to get COVID-19 PCR test results only from labs approved under the network of Pure Health group, announced a relaxation in this rule.

In the latest update, the airline said passengers can opt for locally-approved clinics it had listed for cities or countries of departure on its website if there are no approved Pure Health facilities in their city or country of departure.

With regard to cities from India, Etihad said: “Where possible, the result must be issued by a Pure Health-approved medical facility. If there are no approved Pure Health facilities in your departure city from India, you may arrange a COVID-19 PCR test from an ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) testing facility.”

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