Dubai warning: FCO issues alert to Britons heading to UAE amid coronavirus – is it safe?

Dubai holidays attract a great many Britons in search of guaranteed sunshine and a luxurious break. However, as the UAE reports multiple cases of coronavirus – how safe is it to travel to Dubai? The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) have issued a warning to Britons in their updated travel advice.


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Residents in the UAE, including British ex-pats, have been warned not to travel anywhere abroad amid the outbreak.

The UAE has 20 confirmed cases of coronavirus so far.

There have been zero deaths and only five have recovered at the time of writing.

The FCO said: “There is an ongoing outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) in China, but cases have been confirmed in other countries, including in the UAE.

“The UAE authorities have introduced a number of measures to limit the spread of the virus.

“You should comply with any additional screening measures put in place by the local authorities.

“This could include enhanced medical screening on arrival, with the potential for further follow-up health measures and restrictions.”

“Some flights to and from the United Arab Emirates have been suspended and you should check with your airline before travelling.”

Are UAE flights affected?

Airlines Emirates and Etihad have both been hit by a reduced demand for flights.

Emirates have said: “All customers are requested to check relevant travel advisories from and to the countries to which they are travelling.

“This is a dynamic situation and it is the responsibility of the customer to ensure there are no entry restrictions at their travel destination.


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“Customers are also advised to check the website for the latest flight updates, rebooking and refund options. To receive the latest notifications, customers are requested to ensure we have their correct contact details by visiting Manage booking.

“We are monitoring the situation closely, and will keep customers informed with the latest operational updates.”

What’s more, the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) is conducting a COVID-19 test on passengers arriving from Beijing, Beirut, Rome, Milan, Venice, Bologna, Bangkok and Phuket if Dubai is their final destination.

All schools in the UAE have been closed for four weeks from Sunday 8 March 2020.

The FCO said: “A number of events have been cancelled in the UAE in the coming weeks and months.

“If you are planning to attend a specific event in the UAE, please check with the organisers before travelling.”

The UAE Ministry of Health on Thursday notified that there are 10 countries on the watch-out list.

They include China, Hong Kong, Italy, Iran, Japan, Germany, Singapore, France, Kuwait and Bahrain.

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