Eid Al Adha in UAE: Airport rush expected; get there early
Covid-19 travel requirement checks and safety procedures will also result in an increased waiting time at counters.
Two UAE national carriers have issued an advisory asking passengers to arrive at airports early to account for delays in completing airport formalities due to the summer and Eid Al Adha holiday rush.
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Emirates, the largest international passenger carrier, advised travellers flying from Dubai International airport to arrive early due to increased waiting time at check-in counters. The airline said it was expecting a high number of passenger departures from Dubai during the peak summer travel season.
In addition, Covid-19 travel requirement checks and safety procedures will also result in an increased waiting time at counters.
“Checkin counters will be open 24 hours before your flight from Dubai, and you can check in for your flights and drop your luggage 24 hours before departure,” it said.
Emirates expects a high number of passenger departures from @DXB, and an increased waiting time at check-in counters, due to COVID-19 travel requirement checks and safety procedures. You can check-in and drop your luggage 24 hours before the departure of your flight. pic.twitter.com/sm5yksxm7e— Emirates Airline (@emirates) July 15, 2021
For US flights, the airline said check-in counters would open 12 hours prior to take-off. “You can physically check in and drop your bags early. We encourage you to check in early and ensure you have all the relevant documents ready.”
Throughout July, Emirates will fly to 124 cities and also add more flights to 12 destinations across Europe, North America and Africa, it said last month.
Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways also asked passengers to check in online and arrive early due to the peak Eid holiday travel season. UAE residents will enjoy a six-day long weekend next week, from July 19 to 24, on the occasion of Eid Al Adha.
Due to travel restrictions changing frequently, Etihad recommended passengers visit its website to check for the latest updates before travelling.
Passengers were also advised to share Covid-related travel documents prior to starting the journey. Approval would be shared by email, thus ensuring that passengers have all required documents in place. The process will allow fast-track airport check-in at the “Verified to Fly” desks.
“During peak times, Economy Class check-in for non-US flights opens four hours before departure and closes one hour before departure. Business and First class check-in close 45 minutes before departure. For US flights, check-in closes two hours before the flight. Boarding for all Etihad Airways departures closes 20 minutes before departure,” it said in a statement on Tuesday.
When travelling to the US, the national carrier said all immigration and customs formalities related to the US Customs and Border Protection facility (USCBP) will be completed in Abu Dhabi before departing. Guests must present themselves at the USCBP facility at Abu Dhabi airport no later than 90 minutes before departure.
Given the significant increase in passenger numbers, Etihad Airways will relocate check-in for Economy class flights to Beirut, Cairo, Paris and Zurich to Terminal 1 between July 14 to July 17.
The UAE carriers reiterated that their contact centres are experiencing a greater volume of calls than anticipated. Therefore, if calls are not related to travel within 48 hours, passengers are advised to consider calling back.
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