Soon you could enjoy a short stay over of two days at Dubai and Abu Dhabi without paying any visa fee if you are a transit passenger flying to other international destinations. United Arab Emirates has decided to grant free transit visas for two days, which can also be extended for up to 96 hours by paying 50 Dirham (nearly Rs 930).
The implementation date, however, has not been decided. The government also announced that a number of express counter at the passport-control hall across UAE airports will be set up for obtaining quick transit visa.
India is already the number one international tourist source market for Dubai, according to Dubai Tourism department’s official numbers. Nearly 1.8 crore Indians travel to the UAE every year with Dubai and Abu Dabhi being the top tourist destinations for Indians. Dubai is very popular among Indians for leisure travel and jewellery shopping.
Almost 25 per cent of all international travel to and from India happens on one of UAE airlines — Emirates, flyDubai and Etihad. In terms of flying people in and out of India, Emirates is the biggest international airline, while Jet-Etihad combine is the biggest airline in terms of international travel to and from India.
Nearly, 75 per cent of international travelers transit through these two UAE cities. So the decision to grant free 48-hour transit visas is expected to further increase the number of visitors to UAE.
Besides transit visa, UAE has also announced a number of changes in its Visa rules. UAE has approved new visa rules including a review of the current residency system to allow a two-year extension of the residency period for the dependents of their parents after finishing their university studies.
In other major visa-related decisions, UAE has introduced a new 6-month visa for job seekers who overstayed their visa but wish to work in the country. Further, visa can now be renewed without leaving the country by paying a fee.