UAE's generous, goodwill vaccination gesture: Free COVID jab for tourists in Abu Dhabi

UAE's generous, goodwill vaccination gesture: Free COVID jab for tourists in Abu Dhabi
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Even as popular tourist destinations like the Maldives and states within the US and Russia are planning to cool the heat around the Covid pandemic, the United Arab Emirates has come up with a scheme that’s sure to ease a great deal tension for tourists and other visitors.

UAE’s capital city Abu Dhabi is going the extra mile to make life less stressful to those flying in to the nation. In a goodwill gesture, tourists and visitors are being offered free COVID-19 vaccination facilities. Previously, the service was available only to UAE citizens and those living within the nation on resident visas.

Visitors with Abu Dhabi visas and passport holders eligible for tourists visas who land in the emirati nation via Abu Dhabi can book slots for vaccinations, says SEHA, the Health Services Company which works for the nation’s Public Health Department. Those holding entry visas or whose visas have lapsed are also eligible for obtaining free shots, says an official release of the Abu Dhabi Media Office.

Incidentally, the United Arab Emirates has one of the fastest mechanisms in the world for distributing and administering the vaccine. To date, more than 14.5 million people have been vaccinated in the UAE where the population is put at around 10 million.

There have been no new changes in rules and stipulations for those coming in. All those entering in are to have their Covid negative test reports. Those coming from green listed countries are exempted from quarantine rules. Abu Dhabi’s green listed countries include Austria, Hong Kong, Mauritius, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, US and Uzbekistan.

Apart from UAE residents, vaccinations are being offered to tourists from the Maldives, Russia, the US and several other countries. In fact, the Maldives was one of the first to declare that vaccinations would be administered to all those coming in to the island nation. Plans are also afoot in Russia to initiate a tourist vaccination program for visitors flying in.

Although the US has closed international borders, a few states are readying to welcome vaccinated visitors from within the country as well as those from a few foreign destinations. Alaska has already set the ball rolling to offer free vaccinations to those desirous of seeing the “Last Frontier” as Alaska is nicknamed.

Pop-up clinics have also come up near the New York Subway, airports and other places for tourists and those living around. New York is also planning to give single shots of Johnson & Johnson vaccines to those summer frolickers who are sure to pour into Times Square and High Line.    

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