Dubai opened its doors to international tourists on 7th July after a shutdown of nearly four months, following the outbreak of coronavirus. To welcome back tourists, the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa in Downtown Dubai, hosted a special light show on Wednesday, 8th July, displaying a “Welcome to Dubai” message. Visitors were seen wearing face masks and following social distancing rules, as they watched the light show and the dancing fountains next to the 89.8 metre tower.
Tourists also received “a warm welcome to your second home” passport sticker on arrival at Dubai International Airport. They arrived in Dubai from various destinations such as Cairo, London and Amsterdam, and had to show negative test results for COVID-19, taken less than four days before the flight. At the airport, they were discreetly screened with the help of thermal scanners.
Following the ease in travel restrictions, hotels and holiday homes across the emirate reported an increase in the number of guests and are expecting an upward trend in room reservations going forward. In a statement last month, CEO Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing, Issam Kazim had said that the health and safety measures taken at hotels would help “reassure guests and travellers that Dubai is one of the world’s safest destinations.”
The emirate welcomed over 16.7 million visitors in 2019 and was expecting 20 million in 2020 before the international tourism industry was crippled by the pandemic. In a recent video message on Twitter, Talal Al-Shanqiti of Dubai’s General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs, said, “We are ready to receive tourists while we take all necessary precautions.”
Dubai will be hosting its annual sale, Dubai Summer Surprises (DSS), from Thursday, 9th July. During the 23rd edition of DSS, visitors and UAE residents will be able to enjoy many attractive discounts and other special events across the emirate, while following safety protocols.