An official website of the United States government

Health Alert: U.S. Embassy Abu Dhabi and U.S. Consulate General Dubai (March 28, 2020)
March 28, 2020

Location: Throughout the United Arab Emirates 

U.S. citizens in an emergency can call 1-888-407-4747 from the U.S. and Canada or +1-202-501-4444 from overseas.  

Event: The UAE Attorney General on March 27 issued the following after a Cabinet decision regarding containing the spread of COVID-19: individuals failing to follow social distancing protocols or neglecting to wear medical masks indoors, and motorists with more than three people in their car may receive a 1,000 dirham fine. Those leaving home for unnecessary reasons are subject to a 2,000 dirham fine. Organizing or attending social gatherings, meetings, or public celebrations yields fines of 5,000 to 10,000 dirhams.  This is not an exhaustive list of possible fines. Please check UAE press and official sources for full details. 

The Ministry of Health and Prevention announced March 25 that the United Arab Emirates will shut down public transport and restrict movement during the course of a national campaign to disinfect public facilities, including roads, from Thursday, March 26 to Sunday, March 29 during the hours of 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. each day.  The UAE government has requested individuals register for movement permits during this period at https://movepermit.gov.ae. 

The Ministry of Interior and National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority has urged UAE citizens, residents, and visitors to limit trips outside the home except for essential movements. 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 laws, regulations, and procedures the Government of UAE has put in place 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 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.



U.S. citizens in an emergency can call 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. 

  •     U.S. Embassy Abu Dhabi

Embassies District, Plot 38, Sector W59-02, Street No. 4 

+971 2 414 2200 



  •     U.S. Consulate General Dubai

Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed and Al Seef Streets 

+971 4 309 4000 



  •     State Department – Consular Affairs

888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444