By Rafiq Vayani
DUBAI: Dubai-based airline flydubai has begun welcoming tourists to Dubai following the lifting of flight restrictions that were put in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
On 08 July, flydubai flight FZ 728 from Kiev’s Boryspil International Airport (KBP) arrived at Terminal 2, Dubai International (DXB) at 21:45. Onboard the flight were 07 Business Class passengers and 159 Economy Class passengers who were welcomed on arrival from representatives from the airline, Dubai Airports, Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DCTCM) and other key stakeholders. Amongst the passengers were 25 tourists who chose Dubai as their first holiday destination.
Hamad Obaidalla, Chief Commercial Officer of flydubai, said: “one of my favourite aspects about flydubai is that we have the opportunity to enable people from around the network to experience our home, and we are delighted to welcome the first tourists to Dubai. As more airports around our network begin to lift flight restrictions, we look forward to seeing our network grow to 66 destinations over the summer period. We have been hard at work to redesign our passenger journey in order to minimise the risk of transmission of COVID-19. These efforts are aligned to the stringent public health and safety measures that are in place to ensure that visitors feel safe when they arrive in Dubai.”
Issam Kazim, CEO of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DCTCM), said: “The overall destination experience is our top-most priority, and together with flydubai, are ensuring that the health and safety of visitors is present at every step of the travel process. As Dubai continues to feature as a must-visit destination, we want to assure our visitors that the city is safe and we are very excited to welcome international visitors back.”
flydubai opened for sale on 24 June and within this short period bookings were being made and yesterday the first tourists were welcomed on their arrival at Dubai International (DXB) at the start of their holiday. This is a good indicator of the demand for travel to Dubai.
“All of the staff at Dubai Airports have been eagerly awaiting the restart of operations of our home-based airlines and therefore it is a welcome milestone to see people coming back to Dubai and that we are taking bold steps to ensure we provide a warm welcome and a safe, comfortable and memorable experience to our visitors,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports.
“The airport has taken a huge number of precautionary measures throughout the passenger journey to maintain the health and safety of its customers and staff. These measures include protective plexiglass screens at check-in and immigration counters, thermal and temperature screening at various points between check-in and the departure gate, physical distancing measures and increased levels of sanitisation in compliance with international standards as prescribed by the UAE authorities. These measures have been taken to ensure that everyone who uses our airport as the gateway to Dubai can be reassured that we are doing everything we can to ensure that they can enjoy their stay.”
flydubai’s passenger experience has been redesigned to enable travel in a safe environment that minimises crew and passenger contact. Every passenger will receive a complimentary snack or meal onboard. During a flight, air is exchanged in the cabin every two to three minutes and is sterile when it enters the cabin after passing through high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters. flydubai’s aircraft are disinfected every day with manufacturer-certified cleaning products. The airline offers the flexibility to make a change to the date of travel, rebook to another flight or destination without any penalties. Any differences in fare may apply and tickets are subject to flydubai’s terms and conditions.
flydubai has announced that flights are available to be booked on flydubai.com, initially up to 24 destinations around its network. Destinations and flight frequencies will continue to be added to the schedule over the summer. flydubai is operating to the following destinations, subject to government approvals:
Addis Ababa (ADD), Almaty (ALA), Alexandria (HBE), Amman (AMM), Baku (GYD), Beirut (BEY), Belgrade (BEG), Bucharest (OTP), Dar es Salaam (DAR), Dubrovnik (DBV), Juba (JUB), Kabul (KBL), Khartoum (KRT), Kiev (KBP), Krakow (KRK), Kuwait (KWI), Nur-Sultan (NQZ), Sarajevo (SJJ), Sofia (SOF), Tbilisi (TBS), Yerevan (EVN) and Zanzibar (ZNZ).
Flight bookings can be made on flydubai.com. Passengers are required to make sure that they are up to date with the regulations from the IATA Travel Centre for their whole journey.
International travelers planning their trip to Dubai are bound by new travel protocols and clear steps to ensure a safe trip. Ahead of landing in Dubai, visitors must take a PCR test up to four days (96 hours) prior to their date of travel, or if this has not been done, a PCR test will be carried out upon arrival at Dubai airports. In addition, tourists are encouraged to check their country’s travel advisory for guidance on outbound trips to further ensure their safety; a complete health declaration form will be required as well as travel insurance covering COVID-19.
To download full travel guidelines to Dubai for international travelers, please visit: https://www.visitdubai.com/en/articles/coronavirus-advisory.
To know more about the resumption of flydubai flights, please visit:https://www.flydubai.com/en/flying-with-us/resumption-of-flights