Transit Passengers May Soon Be Able to Go Sight-Seeing in UAE

Passengers in transit may soon be allowed to visit some of the top tourist destinations in the United Arab Emirates.


The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is set to allow passengers transiting through the country to visit its tourist attractions. The UAE cabinet on April 16 gave its nod to a general policy, according to which one-day entry visa will be granted to transit passengers who wish to visit UAE’s tourist locales, Khaleej Times reported.

The goal of the new policy is to improve transit visa procedures so that passengers who are stopping over can leave the airport and visit some of the top tourist destinations in a city during the day.

These entry visas can be obtained by passengers transiting through any of the airports in the country. In 2017, more than 70 per cent of the total number of passengers who went via UAE’s airports were transit passengers, the report said.

A proposal for transit passengers to experience the tourist destinations of Dubai was unveiled in March.

“In Dubai transit time will become tourism as passengers are encouraged to leave the airport to experience the city,” Dubai Media Office had said in a tweet. About 14.9 million tourists visit Dubai annually, with a target of 20 million by 2020.

The new policy will decide upon the visa fees, ways to enhance the number of stopover visitors, and different means through which UAE’s tourism can be promoted. To prepare the new policy, the UAE cabinet has formed a working group led by the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship.

Many residents have welcomed the move, saying that the initiative will allow them to take their relatives and friends sightseeing, the report added.

One of the most popular tourist attractions in UAE is the Burj Khalifa, the 160-story iconic tower located in Dubai. The Palm Jumeirah, which houses some of the most luxurious resorts like Atlantis The Palm, is another popular tourist destination in the  city. The manmade island looks like a stylized palm tree when viewed from above.

Dubai was the most searched destination on Google India and searches for Desert Safari in Dubai rose in 2017, according to Google India’s top travel trends observed from September to November 2017. Dubai was followed by Bangkok in Thailand, and Disneyland in the United States.

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