Is Dubai safe? Latest travel guidance for Middle East as Iran stress intensify

Many readers have actually called TheIndependent to reveal issue about impending travel to the area. It follows the assassination in Baghdad by the United States of the Iranian military leader, QassemSoleimani The killing has actually raised stress throughout the Middle East, and Iran has actually pledged to retaliate. Many visitors might feel worried.

TheBritish and United States authorities are encouraging their people in the crucial traveler locations of UAE and Oman to be alert. But for the travel market, it seems company as typical– with regular policies getting modifications and cancellations.

These are the crucial concerns and responses.

How lots of British visitors are on vacation in the area?

FromForeignOffice figures, integrated with flight patterns, I approximate that around 30,000 UK travelers are on vacation in the UAE; an additional 3,500 in Oman and 2,500 in Qatar, with smaller sized numbers in Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia andIran

In overall, possibly40,000 UK holidaymakers remain in the nations of theGulf, together with a couple of thousand short-term company visitors.

In addition there are lots of 10s of countlessBritish people living and operating in the area.For example, theForeignOffice states more than100,000 UK expatriates reside in the UAE, with an additional20,000 inQatar

Many moreBritish visitors alter airplanes atGulf centers, especiallyDubai,AbuDhabi andDoha

What does the UK federal government encourage after the United States attack?

Late onSaturday 4January, theForeignOffice upgraded its travel guidance to all nations in the area with the very same paragraph:”Following the death ofIranianGeneralQasemSoleimani in a United States strike inBaghdad on 3January,British nationals in the area need to stay alert and maintain to date with the current advancements, consisting of by means of the media and this travel guidance.”

The just nations surrounding theGulf that are on theForeignOffice“no-go” list areIran andIraq( plus, on theArabian peninsula,Yemen).

But there are longstanding issues about terrorism in the UAE.TheForeignOffice has actually been stating for a long time that an attack is likely, and cautions that possible targets consist of“oil, transport and aviation interests as well as crowded places, including restaurants, hotels, beaches, shopping centres and mosques.”

Fears of an attack are increasing as stress continue to intensify (AFP).

At its closest point,Dubai is

about100 miles fromIran’s coast, throughout theGulf

A declaration from theAmerican embassy in the UAE states:“US citizens are strongly encouraged to maintain a high level of vigilance and practice good situational awareness.”

ForQatar andOman, theForeignOffice states:“Terrorist attacks can’t be ruled out. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by foreigners.”



I have actually a vacation reserved inDubaiWhat are my alternatives?

Unless theForeignOffice were to alert versus travel to the UAE– a most not likely occasion– there will be no legal right for travelers to alter their strategies without charge.This uses toDubai,AbuDhabi,Ras alKhaimah and in other places.

ThePackageTravelRegulations, which govern vacations from the UK, state that if the travel organiser can not provide what was reserved due to the fact that of“unavoidable and extraordinary circumstances” then you are entitled to a complete refund.But at present flights toDubai– and in other places in the area– seem continuing as prepared, and the tourist facilities in the UAE is working typically.

There is presently no right to change to an instant departure(Getty).


reserved a stopover inAbuDhabi/Doha/Dubai en path to my last location. I no longer wish to remain longer than I need to.Can I change to an instant departure?

.(***** )There is no automated right to do so, and a big cost may be payable.

A representative forAbuDhabi- based Etihad stated:(************************************************************************************************************* )(********** ).

TheIndependent has actually likewise calledQatarAirways andEmirates to inquire about visitors in this position, and this response will be upgraded when they react.

I am reserved on flights that need a modification of airplane in theGulfCan I change to a direct flight due to the fact that of the scenarios?

Were your airline company to cancel either leg, without any instant option, then you may be rebooked on a direct flight.But there is no automated right to alter.

The flight I have actually reserved toAsia typically flies over this area.Shall I rebook on a various routing?

You might choose not to take a trip, or pick a routing that prevents the area, for instance onAeroflot by means ofMoscow orEthiopianAirlines by means ofAddisAbabaBut you would lose all the cash for your initial flight.

What about cruises?

InAugust2019, P&OCruises cancelled its whole winter season2019-20Gulf cruise program due to the fact that of issues about possible attacks.At the time some observers stated that the reality that P&O is a notionallyBritish business and utilizes theUnion flag plainly might increase the threat of it being targeted.

A representative for P&OCruises stated:“Itineraries are due to resume at the end of 2020 but we will take advice from authorities and if changes are necessary then we will advise guests as soon as possible.”

At present all travel companies seem adhering to their regular cancellation/change policies(Getty).

According to online tracking websites, lots of cruise liner remain in theGulf, consisting of MSCBellissimma inAbuDhabi,CrystalEsprit inDoha and 5 inDubai: MSCLirica,CostaDiadema,Jewel of theSeas(RoyalCaribbean),Horizon(Pullmantur) andMeinSchiff 5 (Tui).And the QE2 is completely moored there, as a drifting hotel.

Many other cruise liner are heading forDubai– cruises in betweenSingapore,India and the UAE are especially popular.They will include cruising through the(*************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************

) ofHormuz

At present all travel companies seem adhering to their regular cancellation/change policies.

What about overflights of the area?

That is a severe issue for the air travel market. A substantial quantity ofEurope-Asia traffic is routed by means of the(******************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************** )with flight courses usually crossingIraq and/orIranIf airline companies choose to re-route them, it will result in longer journeys, missed out on connections and greater fuel expenses.If your flight is impacted( for instance, you miss out on a connection), the airline company should discover a service for you.

GeneralQassemSoleimani’s coffin passes inIraq funeral procession.

Could theHajj be impacted?

Tens of countlessBritishMuslims are anticipated to make the expedition toMecca inSaudiArabia in2020But as it will not occur up until late(********************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************* )/ early(******************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************* )it is prematurely to state if and how travel will be impacted at that time.

Would you go to the Gulf today?

Yes I rank the threats of taking a trip to the UAE, or other Gulf nations such as Oman and Bahrain, to be tolerably low. But an attack can not be eliminated.

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