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11/17/2021 | News release | Distributed by Public on 11/17/2021 08:18

The Latest Guidelines and Requirements for Travels to India from the UAE

This article is reviewed regularly (on a monthly basis) by Wego 's editorial team to ensure that the content is up to date & accurate.

Updated 17 November 2021

COVID-19 has left many travel plans in tatters, with people getting stranded worldwide, mainly because the pandemic has forced many air travel facilities globally to shut down. India-the world's second most populated country-faced this problem at large.

India has, however, begun allowing fully vaccinated foreign tourists to enter the country on regular commercial flights from November 15 in the latest easing of COVID-19 restrictions with the significant infections fall and rise in the vaccination rate. The step has been implemented for the first time since March 2020 when the country imposed one of the toughest lockdowns in the world in an attempt to contain the pandemic.

Who can travel to India from the UAE now?

India has allowed fully vaccinated travellers from 99 countries to enter the country quarantine-free on normal commercial flights starting 15 November. These are 'Category A' countries and the UAE is a part of this list. Therefore, fully vaccinated travellers from the UAE can now travel to India quarantine-free and without any restrictions.

The partially or non-vaccinated UAE travellers will however have to follow some additional requirements. More on this below.

India and the UAE have an air bubble agreement that allows airlines to operate flights to and from both countries. Travel to India from the UAE via this scheme is restricted to the following specified categories of passengers:

  • Indian Nationals or nationals of Nepal or Bhutan stranded in UAE or in any country in South America or Africa;
  • All overseas Citizen of India (OCI) cardholders and person of Indian origin (PIO) cardholders holding passports of any country;
  • UAE nationals and foreign nationals (from any country in South America or Africa only) intending to visit India for any purpose (including their dependents on the appropriate category of dependent visa) except those on a Tourist visa. Tourist visas or e-visa issued on or after October 6 are now valid for travel to India.

Required documents

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in India has updated guidelines for international arrivals.

  • Travellers need to submit a self-declaration form before travelling to India. The form has to be completed by every person who is flying, including infants and children. After filling in the form, travellers will get an approval code that will be required before boarding any flight.
  • All passengers must also have a printed colour copy of the self-declaration form when travelling unless flying to Hyderabad where two copies are required.
  • Vaccinated travellers need to upload their vaccination certificate on the Air Suvidha online portal and carry a printed copy of the certificate, which should be in English.
  • Finally, passengers need to download the Aarogya Setu app on their mobile phones.

Please note that depending on which state travellers are flying to, there could be other rules to follow, such as to Chennai in Tamil Nadu where travellers need to apply for a TN e‑pass at least 48 hours before flying. All passengers travelling to Kerala must also update their details on the COVID‑19 Jagratha portal at least two days before departure. Therefore, it is necessary for travellers to regularly check the local regulations for their destination.

You can check the latest state-wise quarantine regulations from here.

COVID‑19 testing requirements

According to thelatest travel requirements in India, all travellers from the UAE should:

  • Submit a self-declaration form on the online Air Suvidha portaland upload a negative RT-PCR test report before the scheduled travel
  • This test should have been conducted within 72 hrs prior to undertaking the journey.
  • Each passenger shall also submit a declaration with respect to the authenticity of the report and will be liable for criminal prosecution if found otherwise.
  • Travellers should have a hard copy of their negative test results with them when they travel. This is because digital copies are not accepted.

Children under 5 years of age will be exempted from both pre-and-post-arrival testings.

Quarantine and self-isolation rules

Fully vaccinated travellers

Fully vaccinated travellers from the UAE are free to leave the airport and enjoy a quarantine free stay in India. They will, however, have to self-monitor their health for 14 days' post-arrival.

Partially or non-vaccinated travellers

Partially or non-vaccinated travellers from the UAE need to adhere to the following rules:

  • Undergo post-arrival COVID-19 test at the point of arrival, after which they will be allowed to leave the airport
  • Home quarantine for 7 days
  • Re-test on the 8th day of arrival in India and if negative, further self-monitor their health for the next 7 days

Suppose travellers under home quarantine or self-health monitoring develop signs and symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 or test positive for COVID-19 on re-testing. In that case, they will immediately self-isolate and report to their nearest health facility or call the National helpline number (1075).

The cost of these on-arrival tests varies depending on the airport that travellers land at. Mumbai has the cheapest tests, from 600 Indian rupees ($8), while Bangalore's express tests are some of the more expensive options at 3,200 Indian rupees ($43) per person. Travellers arriving in Kerala and requiring an on-arrival test will receive it free of charge.

Flights from the Dubai to India

Ethiopian Airlines IndiGo, flydubai, Emirates, SpiceJet, Vistara, Gulf Air are among the airlines that operate flights to India from Dubai.

Book cheap flights to India