UAE announces temporary suspension of visas on arrival

The UAE visa on arrival suspension will apply to passport holders from previously exempt countries.

Effective 01:00 (UAE local time) on Thursday 19th March, 2020, the UAE will temporarily suspend the issuance of visas upon arrival as part of the precautionary and preventive measures being put in place to contain the spread of COVID-19.

Despite an earlier announcement stating that visas on arrival to the UAE would continue for an exempt list of passport holders, a new statement has now been issued.

According to WAM, the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship noted that only holders of diplomatic passports will be exempt until further notice: “the decision will apply to holders of exempted passports until a medical clearance process is activated at the departure country as part of global precautionary measures being undertaken to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”

This comes following a series of airline changes that had been announced from Etihad and Emirates. It is yet to be seen whether the airlines will issue further changes as a result of the new directive.

The decision comes from the UAE’s approach to supporting for efforts by the international community to contain the virus.

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