Health Alert:  U.S. Embassy Abu Dhabi and U.S. Consulate General Dubai

March 29, 2020

Location: Throughout the United Arab Emirates

U.S. citizens looking for options to return to the United States can 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. 

Event: The Ministry of Health and Prevention on March 28 extended the UAE initiative to disinfect public facilities, including roads, until April 5.  From 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. daily, public transport will be shut down and movement restricted.  The UAE government has requested that individuals wishing to move outside their homes during these hours register for movement permits at  https://dxbpermit.gov.ae/home or through the Abu Dhabi Police’s website at https://www.adpolice.gov.ae/en/pages/home.aspx.  Failure to register movements could result in fines.

The UAE Attorney General announced on March 27 that individuals failing to follow social distancing protocols or motorists with more than three people in their car may receive a 1,000 dirham fine.  Organizing or attending social gatherings, meetings, or public celebrations will result in fines of 5,000-10,000 dirhams.  The UAE Ministry of Interior clarified on March 29 that anyone displaying common cold or flu-like symptoms and not wearing a medical mask indoors is subject to a 1,000 dirham fine.  This is not an exhaustive list of possible fines.  Please see UAE official sources for full details.

Public spaces, shopping malls, and most retail stores are closed.  Grocery stores, pharmacies, and gas stations remain open. Visit the UAE Ministry of Health COVID-19 website for updated information.  Failure to follow all UAE laws, regulations, and procedures to combat the spread of COVID-19 could result in fines and jail terms.

The UAE General Civil Aviation Authority suspended all inbound, outbound, and transit passenger flights for two weeks, subject to extension, effective March 25.  Travelers affected by flight suspensions may contact the State Department’s Repatriation Task Force at 1-888-407-4747 from the United States and Canada or +1-202-501-4444 from overseas.

Effective March 29, U.S. Embassy Abu Dhabi and U.S. Consulate General Dubai will move to minimal staffing.  Consular Sections will continue to provide the following emergency services to U.S. citizens:  renewing expired passports or passports expiring within 6 months; processing applications for Consular Reports of Birth Abroad; and processing Consular Reports of Death Abroad.  U.S. citizens may request an emergency appointment through email by contacting the Embassy at  AbuDhabiACS@state.gov and the Consulate at DubaiACS@state.gov.

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.

Assistance:

U.S. citizens looking for options to return to the United States can 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.

Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security and health updates.