The Dubai-based carrier will start flying to North America, Europe and Australia on May 21.
Emirates will resume flights from Dubai to nine international destinations: Chicago, London, Paris, Milan, Madrid, Toronto, Sydney, Frankfurt, and Melbourne, making it among the first airlines to resume services to the U.S. “We are pleased to resume scheduled passenger services to these destinations, providing more options for customers to travel from the UAE to these cities," Adel Al Redha, Emirates' chief operating officer said in a statement.
Emirates has increased health measures at Dubai International Airport and on board its aircraft to limit the spread of Covid-19. All passengers and employees will have to wear gloves and masks at the airport. They will also have their temperatures checked via thermal scanners. In addition, all cabin crew, boarding agents and ground staff will have to wear personal protective equipment (PPE). The PPE includes a protective disposable gown, a safety visor, mask and gloves.
Protective barriers have been installed at each check-in counter.
There will be vacant seats placed between family groups or individual passengers to keep social distancing.
Passengers will not be permitted to carry cabin baggage except a laptop, handbag, briefcase or childcare items.
After each journey, the aircraft will undergo enhanced cleaning and disinfection processes.
Emirates Airlines and Dubai Health Authority (DHA) have partnered to introduce rapid coronavirus (Covid-19) tests for passengers. The results are available within ten minutes.
As of April 14, Emirates has updated its COVID-19 travel waiver policies into one simplified approach for rebooking and refunds on tickets issued in all its global markets.
Adnan Kazim, Emirates’ Chief Commercial Officer said: “The travel and airline industry have complicated rulebooks for how fares, re-bookings or refunds are applied, which also differ depending on market regulation. We understand that explaining and unravelling all of that is confusing and frustrating for customers. The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented for everyone, and we’d like to thank our customers and trade partners for their patience, understanding and support as we worked through this period to ensure our policies are not only customer-friendly but also in line with regulatory requirements.
“We sincerely hope that our customers will choose to rebook and fly with us again at a later time, and that is why we’re offering up to two years validity on their current tickets, or travel vouchers which can be redeemed for any Emirates product or service. Any fees for making a change to the tickets will be waived for tickets issued till 31 May 2020 for travel up to 31 August 2020. However, if they would still like to opt for a refund, we will process that. We would just like to seek our customers’ understanding that refunds will take time as we have a significant backlog to manage.”
Emirates is offering three options to its customers affected by flight cancellations and travel restrictions:
1. Keep your ticket. All Emirates tickets booked before 31 May for travel up to 31 August will be automatically extended for 760 days. Customers holding such tickets can be assured their tickets will be honored, and they can rebook when they decide to travel.
2. Request a travel voucher: Travel vouchers are valid for one year from date the voucher was issued, and can be extended for a second year. The voucher can be used for any Emirates product or service, which means customers can use it to offset charges for flights to any destination in any cabin class, or other services. No change fees apply to this voucher, so customers will have more flexibility to reschedule when they are ready to travel again.
3. Refunds: Customers who have opted to keep their ticket or opted for a travel voucher can still apply for a refund, if they are unable to travel. There will be no refund penalties.
If you are planning traveling, check the latest updates with the World Health Organization (WHO), with the ECDC, and with the public health agency of the destination you plan to visit. There you’ll find the latest COVID-19 case numbers, the restrictions and quarantine requirements in place, and how overwhelmed the country’s health care system is.