Abu Dhabi border check
File image used for illustrative purposes: Abu Dhabi Police check point on Sheikh Zayed Road at the Dubai Abu Dhabi Border at the Saih exit. Image Credit: GN Archives

Abu Dhabi: The Abu Dhabi Emergency, Crisis and Disasters Committee announced on Saturday that the COVID-19 test requirement for entering Abu Dhabi would be removed starting September 19, Sunday. This applies to travel within the UAE.

Saturday's announcement clarifies that residents, tourists or citizens travelling to Abu Dhabi from other emirates will not be required to present a COVID-19 test result starting from today, September 19.

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The Abu Dhabi Media Office said that the decision follows the decreased COVID-19 infection rate in the emirate, at just 0.2 per cent of total tests conducted. The change in entry rules also follows the activation of the green pass system to enter some public places.

The committee added that they would continue to monitor events and urged all citizens, residents, and visitors to continue adhering to precautionary measures to protect public health and safety, maintain successes, and advance the nation’s sustainable recovery.

What's the change?

As of the most recent update in August, non-vaccinated travellers had to present a negative PCR test result issued within 48 hours before entry, or a negative DPI result issued within 24 hours before entry in to Abu Dhabi. Non-vaccinated travellers also had to take additional tests on the fourth and eight day of their stay in Abu Dhabi.

However, vaccinated travellers were allowed to enter the emirate with a 'green pass' and an active E or star icon on Alhosn app. While a PCR test is required to get the E/star icon, no further tests were required for vaccinated travellers.

This is the rule that changed with Saturday's announcement. Starting Sunday, all visitors can enter Abu Dhabi without testing.

Entering some public places still restricted

Abu Dhabi still has the Green Pass system in place for some public places. In order to maintain a Green Pass on one's AlHosn app, fully vaccinated individuals must get a negative PCR test every 30 days. People who are not vaccinated, or who have a medical exemption for vaccination, must get a negative PCR test result uploaded every week. The Green Pass requirement does not, however, apply to children aged less than 16 years.

Stock Green pass Abu Dhabi
Green pass in Abu Dhabi Image Credit: Anas Thacharpadikkal/Gulf News

So, if you're heading to Abu Dhabi, it would be safer to check ahead of your travel if the places you plan to visit require the Green Pass for entry. As of August, entry to shopping malls, certain events, cinemas, gyms, spas, museums, and other places in the emirate require the Green Pass.