Tesla rides, 5-star food: Students return to a VIP quarantine in UAE
Khushi Thadani was swept off her feet as she arrived on an Emirates flight from Toronto at the Dubai international airport.
Stranded students who recently returned to the UAE were ecstatic over the grand reception they received: They rode Tesla cars, checked in at ritzy hotels, and treated to five-star food choices.
Nineteen-year-old Khushi Thadani was swept off her feet as she arrived on an Emirates flight from Toronto at the Dubai international airport. First thing she saw was a fleet of luxury cars pulling in to pick up the 'VIPs' for the day - a number of students arriving from different destinations.
"I came back to the UAE after five months. It was such a lavish affair right from the start. Free car services for pick-up, at the check posts the police were facilitating all procedures to cross the border. I didn't have to do anything. I was just enjoying the drive back home," said Thadani, who lives in Abu Dhabi.
The students were accompanied by government authorities at all points, ensuring their safety, she said. Her family chose chose hotel quarantine over home quarantine as her father is diabetic and in the high-risk category for contracting Covid-19.
"As we reached Abu Dhabi, I was put up at a top five-star hotel in the Capital. I was living in a big luxurious room there and was even given meal choices. I genuinely felt it was a 'wow' treatment," Thadani said.
"Doctors and nurses kept coming in to check my temperature and ensure my wellbeing. They were also updating my parents over the phone. I was so relieved to be back home, finally."
Families extend their gratitude
Twenty-year-old Kaushik Murali's mother, Malini, said she is 'extremely grateful' to the government for facilitating a smooth return.
"My son returned on 3rd of June from Toronto and he is currently isolating himself in a room inside the house. When he came, he was so excited and was narrating that he was picked up by a fancy car from the airport here in Dubai," she said.
"Then he was driven to JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai, where they underwent certain formalities. He also downloaded the AlHosn App there, which basically works like a monitor. At every step, we were being informed and assisted about the situation. The whole process upon arrival was seamless."
Malini said her son's return was the best birthday gift she received. "My birthday is on June 6 and Kaushik returned on June 3. So being reunited with my son just before my birthday is the biggest gift that I could have received. My son's birthday is on June 10 . I am glad he is home."
'Trust the system'
For Sameera, mother of 19-year-old Nayaab, the patience and the long were all worth it. "We need to trust the system. I know it's a trying time for every parent and their child. But we are so thankful to this country today," she said.
"Not only was my daughter thrilled to be picked up in a Tesla and all the special treatment that she received later, but even on the flight from Toronto, the students were treated with a lot of warmth and hospitality. I extend my sincere gratitude to everyone in the system."
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