Covid: Pakistani expatriate goes on “quarantine vacation” in Egypt to return to Dubai – News

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He decided that resuming the long road to the United Arab Emirates was his best bet, given the current travel restrictions.

Desperate to return to the UAE after an emergency trip to Karachi, a Pakistani expat took a 14-day trip to Egypt to meet quarantine requirements – and, at the same time, enjoy some vacation.

Due to the Covid-related suspension of flights from Pakistan that went into effect in the UAE on May 13, Syed Muhammad Mudassir decided resuming the long drive home to Dubai was his best bet under the circumstances. .

Speaking to Khaleej Times, he said: “I originally planned to reach Dubai via Turkey, but realized that Egypt would be a better option as it allows one to be on vacation rather than ‘in quarantine,’ he said.

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Many UAE residents from South Asian countries such as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal are currently stranded in their home countries due to flight suspensions linked to Covid. And desperation drives many to explore alternative routes to return to Dubai, including via countries like Kyrgyzstan, Turkey and Egypt, where they must first spend a mandatory 14 days.

“I was considering many options but found Egypt to be a viable option due to the reasonable cost of living,” said Mudassir, sales manager at Al Bloushi Travels.

“I was able to visit most of the scenic and tourist sites in Egypt,” he added.

Karachi to Cairo

Mudassir flew from Karachi to Cairo via Istanbul on June 13.

“I had the option of traveling from Doha or Turkey to Cairo. The layover time at Doha airport was longer, so I opted for Turkish Airlines with an eight hour layover at Istanbul airport, “he explained.

The 14 hour one-way flight with a stopover in Cairo cost him 2,080 Dh. “I had all the valid documents at hand. The visa for the country of arrival and the PCR test are compulsory at the airport, ”he said.

Mudassir applied for an Egyptian visa through his travel agency by paying 100 Dh at the Egyptian consulate in Dubai. He said the visa can be obtained from any travel agent, although fees may differ. He had to produce a copy of the visa, a PCR test report, a plane ticket to Dubai, and hotel reservation details at all airports.

He noted that visitors to Egypt can roam freely if they have a negative PCR certificate. “I was cleared to continue my tour in Egypt after testing negative for Covid-19. I spent around 3000 Dh in Egypt during my two week stay, ”he said.

A local mobile phone number can be obtained at the airport, and most places in Egypt offer internet connectivity. There are plenty of accommodation options available across the country, he said.

“I booked a hotel for 2,000 Dh for 14 days. However, there are many options that cater to backpackers for 250-500 Dh for the same period, ”he added.

Cairo to Dubai

A plane ticket from Cairo to Dubai, with a baggage allowance of 40kg, cost Mudassir around 500 Dh on Etihad – and he was able to make it to Abu Dhabi on June 28.

“Etihad Airways does not accept PCR test results from any random lab. The presence of Pure Health laboratories in Egypt facilitates the performance of the PCR test, ”he said.

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“Residents who wish to travel to Dubai should book their tickets accordingly if traveling with Etihad. The relevant airline team will drop you off at Sheikh Zayed Road. If the ticket is booked for Abu Dhabi, quarantine for 14 days in Abu Dhabi. “

Mudassir pointed out that staying in Egypt is a quarantine for the United Arab Emirates, a resident of the United Arab Emirates from a South Asian country must apply for an entry permit from the General Directorate of Residence and Foreign Affairs ( GDRFA) online to arrive in Dubai or at the Federal Identity and Citizen Citizenship (ICA) to return to Abu Dhabi.

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