Dubai: Visit visa holders urged to carry Dh3,000 in cash or credit, return tickets, proof of stay


Travellers on Dubai visit visas are urged to carry Dh3,000 cash, a valid return ticket, and proof of accommodation before going on a flight to the emirate, tourism agencies told Khaleej Times.

Experts said authorities are ensuring strict entry guidelines are followed. Some passengers who failed to meet the requirements said they were stopped at Indian airports and barred from boarding their flights. Other reported being stranded at airports in Dubai.

“People travelling to Dubai must have a valid visa with a passport having validity of at least six months. One must carry a confirmed return ticket. These are checks that are being done earlier,” said Firoz Maliyakkal, founder and CEO of Tahira Tours and Travels.

“However, now, checks are being done to ensure that you are carrying enough money as proof of funds to sustain your stay in Dubai. The amount is any currency equivalent to Dh3,000 in cash or credit card. One has to provide a valid address proof of accommodation in the UAE; it can be either a relative’s or friend’s home or a hotel booking,” added Firoz.

Travel agents said this rule has been in place for a long time but now, authorities have tightened monitoring for the benefit of travellers.

“Airport checks are being conducted to safeguard travellers arriving in Dubai. There have been many cases of overstaying. This step by the authorities will positively impact the tourism sector of the emirate,” said Libin Varghese from Rooh Travel and Tourism.

“Stringent checks provide transparency and prevent any discrepancies for people travelling to the UAE,” he added.

‘Stuck at airport’

On May 15, Abin S arrived in Dubai on a Spice Jet flight from Cochin International Airport in the south Indian state of Kerala. Upon his arrival, he was asked to provide the requirements to enter Dubai.

“Upon my arrival at 2.30am, I was asked to show an amount equivalent to Dh3,000, which I had with me. I also had a return ticket. But the crucial part was proof of my accommodation in Dubai,” said Abin.

“I mentioned that I would be staying with my cousin, and the officers requested his Emirates ID and proof of accommodation. However, my cousin is renting a room in Dubai and doesn’t have accommodation under his name,” added Abin.

This was not Abin’s first trip to Dubai, he said, and he had not encountered such a situation before.

“I wasn’t informed about this by the travel agent in India, nor did my cousin tell me anything. I had to stay in the airport’s waiting hall for four days, and finally, on May 19, I returned to my hometown on the same airline,” Abin said.

Khaleej Times has reached out to immigration authorities for comment, and a response is awaited.

Denied boarding

When Indian tourist Abhishek arrived at Cochin International Airport to board his flight to Dubai on May 20, he was not allowed to enter the airport. He was hoping to visit his brother-in-law Bijesh in Dubai.

“The airport staff said that the UAE will not allow anyone to enter the country without showing a valid hotel stay for the duration of their visit visa in the country or Dh5000 in cash as dirhams,” said Bijesh. “He had Rs50,000 but they said he had to present the cash in dirhams.”

Bijesh said he and his friends scrambled to make alternative arrangements. “Abhishek was supposed to stay with his uncle in Dubai,” he said.

“We immediately sent all the details of the uncle, including his Emirates ID and proof of stay, but the authorities at Cochin airport were adamant that they would not let him board the plane until he presented the necessary documents,” said Bijesh.

Unable to board his scheduled Spice Jet flight, Abhishek lost the money he had spent on it. “We went to the Spice Jet office in Dubai and asked them for a refund,” said Bijesh. “However, they said there was nothing they could do as the rules were being enforced very strictly and it was the duty of the passenger to check it,” added Bijesh.

Now, Abhishek is waiting to arrange funds and book new tickets to be able to fly to Dubai.__Khaleej Times