Dubai: UAE’s ban on inbound flights from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka could be further extended depending on government mandates.
“Following the latest UAE Government directives, passenger travel from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to the UAE and Etihad's network has been suspended until August 7, 2021,” said Etihad in a statement.
“This is an evolving situation, and this date may have to be extended in line with government mandates,” the Abu Dhabi-based airline said on its website.
Fake news alert
A screenshot of a Gulf News article claiming that the flight ban may go beyond December 31 is false. Gulf News clarifies that the flight ban is until August 7 and not December 31.
Travel industry sources have said the ban may extend until August 31 as some flights scheduled between August 7 and August 12 have already been cancelled.
UAE nationals, diplomatic missions, official delegations and Golden residence holders are exempted from the UAE entry restriction. These passengers will be subject to acceptance and quarantine conditions.
Etihad, which is currently operating normal commercial flights to all four countries, said cargo will continue to operate in both directions without any impact. “Etihad is working closely with impacted guests to notify them of the changes to their itineraries.”
What we know so far?
April 22: General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) and the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Emergency Management Authority (NCEMA) announce the suspension of all inbound flights for national and international carriers coming from the Republic of India.
May 23: Emirates airline says passenger flights from India will remain suspended until June 14, 2021. The carrier says that travelers who have transited through India in the last 14 days will not be accepted to travel from any other point to the UAE.
June 19: Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management in Dubai says passengers from India with a valid residence visa who have received two doses of a UAE-approved vaccine, will be allowed to travel to Dubai from June 23; Emirates airline says it will resume flights connecting India, South Africa and Nigeria to Dubai from June 23.
June 23: Flights between India and UAE will remain suspended until July 6, says Air India; over the next couple of days, Etihad and Emirates confirm the same on Twitter
June 25: UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority, in a Notice Issued to Airmen (NOTAM), says flights from India and 13 other countries, including Liberia, Namibia, Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic Of Congo, Uganda, Zambia, Vietnam, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Nigeria and South Africa, will remain suspended until 23:59 hrs of July 21, 2021.
June 29: Flights from India to UAE have been suspended until July 21 by UAE authorities, Etihad airways says on its website.
July 1: Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC) and the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA) announce that UAE citizens are prohibited from travelling to countries the UAE has banned entry from recently. The list includes India.
July 2: Emirates says it has suspended all passenger flights from India “effective until further notice”; Dubai carrier later says it has halted all passenger flights from the South Asian country until July 15, 2021.
July 17: Etihad Airways says inbound flights from India would remain suspended until July 31.
July 26: Flights from India to UAE will remain suspended until August 2, says Etihad
July 28: Emirates says it will suspend the carriage of passengers from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka to Dubai until August 7.
July 31: UAE’s ban on inbound flights from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka could be further extended from August 7 depending on government mandates, says Etihad