A Resident Stranded Outside The UAE For Over Two Months Is Giving Hope To Others

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Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, residents have been stranded outside of the UAE for over two months.

From June 1, restrictions were lifted and slowly but surely, residents are beginning to return. (Note: If you’re stranded outside of the UAE, you MUST get approval from the ICA before you travel.)

Amal Naseem, a post-grad student in London, was stranded for two months and two weeks, and she shared her story to show how quickly the situation can turn around.

READ: 29,000+ Stranded UAE Residents Are Getting Restless Awaiting The ICA Approval To Return Home

“I’m so sorry to hear about the rejections…but please don’t lose hope just yet. I was in the same place a few days back and things just took a drastic turn within seconds” – Amal


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Amal had her application rejected seven times before she got approval to travel

Amal was due to fly back to the UAE on March 19, just a few hours before the ban came through. She had applied 7 times before her application was finally approved and she returned on June 3.

She shared her story with the Facebook group UAE Expats Stuck Abroad (where residents in similar situations have been detailing their circumstances due to the travel ban) giving hope but also warning others NOT to book flights without ICA approval. Amal said she saw a man rejected who had a ticket, but no ICA approval.

Amal shared the details to help lift the spirits of others stuck abroad and gave exact details of her journey

She recounted; there were temperature checks and social distancing before leaving the UK and a COVID-19 test on arrival in Abu Dhabi. Everyone must undergo home quarantine for 14 days.

“In terms of baggage, we were allowed 30 kgs for check-in. Cabin baggage was 7kg and hang luggage (where I had my laptop) was 5kg. And so in total, 42kgs.

As others have mentioned before, there were just two stores that were open at Heathrow. There were no tests done over here though. They only checked our temperature right before we boarded the flight.”

We were then taken in a coach to the airport. After which
1. They first registered us for the Covid test. Took 2-5 mins.
2. Conducted the nasal swab test. It was uncomfortable for sure, but not painful. Took less than 5 mins.
3. Took copies of our passport and visas. The machine had stopped working so it took longer … but it shouldn’t be more than 5 mins.
4. It is mandatory home quarantine for Abu Dhabi residents. We weren’t asked or given an option of home/hotel quarantine. And so, we were handed a form to sign that stated we would be quarantining at home for 14 days. They didn’t give us any instructions though … no apps, tracking …. none of that sort. Took less than 2 minutes to fill this out.
5. We were then asked to proceed to the immigration desk for stamping. Again, since there were so few of us, took 2-5 minutes.
6. We then went to collect our baggage which was already kept out for us and so took no time at all.
7. And that’s it…walked towards the exit door and I was finally home, Allhamdullillah!”

LISTEN: The Abu Dhabi Lockdown Has Been Extended For One More Week

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