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Health Alert:  U.S. Embassy Abu Dhabi and U.S. Consulate General Dubai
April 8, 2020

April 8, 2020         


U.S. passport processing centers have limited passport operations due to COVID-19. If you previously applied for a passport or citizenship service, expect significant delays. Citizens with expired U.S. passports who wish to return to the U.S., or families with newborn U.S. citizens without passports, should contact AbuDhabiACS@state.gov or DubaiACS@state.gov to apply for an emergency passport. If all requirements are met, emergency passports can be issued within 48 hours. We will schedule normal passport appointments when passport processing centers reopen. Please email AbuDhabiACS@state.gov or DubaiACS@state.gov for an appointment.

Flight options to the United States via Europe and Asia now available.  A limited number of outbound-only passenger flights to destinations including London, Frankfurt, Paris, Brussels Zurich, Manila, and Seoul have begun.  U.S. citizens and Legal Permanent Residents wishing to depart for the United States are strongly encouraged to make reservations on these flights.  Commercial flights are available from these European and Asian destinations to the United States for U.S. citizens and U.S. Legal Permanent Residents.  Passengers traveling to the U.S. MUST show their onward ticket to board aircraft in the UAE. You do not need a letter from any U.S. Missionor the authorities in the UAE to make your reservation.  The U.S. Embassy and Consulate cannot assist with contacting airlinesor negotiating the use of funds from any pre-existing itineraries.  If booking tickets by phone, state that you are transiting to the U.S.

The U.S. Embassy and Consulate have no plans to arrange repatriation flights to the United States at this time. Emirates and Etihad Airlines flights are the currently available options to fly to the United States.  There are no direct flights scheduled from the UAE to the United States.

On April 7, Dubai opened its first drive-through coronavirus testing center at Al Nasr Club.  Tests are free of charge.  To make a required appointment, call the Dubai Health Authority at 800 342.

Individuals in Dubai must request for permission each time they leave their homes, including for essential purposes such as buying food and medicines or getting tested for COVID-19.  An application for a permit must be filled out at https://dxbpermit.gov.ae/home before each trip.

Actions to Take:

  • Enroll in the STEP program at https://step.state.gov/ to receive alerts and ensure you can be located in an emergency.
  • Encourage other U.S. citizens to enroll in the STEP program.
  • Confirm the validity of your travel documents, including passports and visas.
  •  Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date COVID-19 information.
  •  For the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19, please see the CDC’s latest recommendations.
  •  Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.
  •  Check with your airlines, cruise lines, or travel operators regarding any updated information about your travel plans and/or restrictions.
  •  Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in the UAE.
  •  Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the United States.


U.S. citizens looking for options to return to the United States can email American Citizen Services at abudhabiacs@state.gov (for Abu Dhabi) or dubaiacs@state.gov (for Dubai and other emirates) or call the U.S. Department of State Repatriation Task Force at 1-888-407-4747 from the U.S. and Canada or +1-202-501-4444 from overseas.