Bahrain travel guide: everything you need to know as vaccine corridor with UAE opens

Travellers who have been vaccinated against Covid-19 can travel between the Gulf island and the UAE without quarantine from the first day of Eid

Bahrain is welcoming fully vaccinated travellers from the UAE with no Covid-19 testing on arrival, and no quarantine period required. Getty Images
Bahrain is welcoming fully vaccinated travellers from the UAE with no Covid-19 testing on arrival, and no quarantine period required. Getty Images

The UAE and Bahrain have announced the launch of a travel corridor for people who have been vaccinated against Covid-19.

The vaccine corridor allows vaccinated passengers to travel between the two countries without the need for quarantine in either destination. It will be in operation from the first day of Eid Al Fitr.

With Bahrain a little more than an hour's flight from the UAE, the country could be a good pick for those wanting a change of scenery without having to travel too far from home.

If you're considering taking a trip to the Gulf island in the near future, this guide answers any questions you may have, from the precautionary measures that need to be followed to the restrictions in place once you arrive.

Who can fly to Bahrain?

Travellers flying to Bahrain must must complete an online health declaration and download the ‘BeAware Bahrain’ app. Courtesy Four Seasons
Travellers flying to Bahrain must complete an online health declaration and download the BeAware Bahrain app. Courtesy Four Seasons

Entry to Bahrain is currently restricted to Bahraini citizens and residents, GCC citizens and passengers eligible to obtain a visa on arrival or an eVisa. Click here to discover which passport holders qualify for visas on arrival. Entry is suspended for travellers from Red List countries, which includes India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka. Only Bahraini citizens and residents can return from these destinations.

Diplomats, military personnel, airline crew and holders of official, service or UN passports can also fly to Bahrain. All arriving passengers must hold a return ticket and sufficient funds to cover their stay in Bahrain.

Do I need to quarantine in Bahrain?

The UAE and Bahrain have announced a travel corridor for vaccinated travellers. Getty Images
The UAE and Bahrain have announced a travel corridor for vaccinated travellers. Getty Images

Travellers who have not been fully vaccinated against Covid-19 will need to quarantine in Bahrain for 10 days.

Citizens and residents of the UAE who can provide proof that they have received the full course of a Covid-19 vaccine through approved applications – Al Hosn in the UAE and BeAware Bahrain – do not need to quarantine or undergo Covid-19 testing procedures from Thursday, May 13.

Passengers travelling from other GCC countries who are fully vaccinated or have recovered from Covid-19 also do not need to undergo PCR testing on arrival, or follow self-isolation rules.

Travellers from the UK, US, EU member countries, South Korea, Japan, Canada, Australia, New Zealand or Singapore who can prove they have been vaccinated do not need to quarantine, but must follow PCR testing rules.

Travellers from other destinations who have been vaccinated must follow the rules for non-vaccinated travellers.

What do I need to do before I fly to Bahrain?

All travellers flying to Bahrain must complete this Health Declaration form before flying. Passengers must also download and activate the BeAware Bahrain app.

Tourists who need an online visa must apply and have their application approved before they can fly to Manama.

Negative PCR test results are required for anyone flying to Bahrain who is unvaccinated. Tests must be taken a maximum of 48 hours before flight departure times. Children under the age of 6 are exempt from testing requirements.

What rules are in place at the airport?

Covid-19 testing is in place at Bahrain airport. Citizens and residents with proof of vaccination or recovery through the BeAware Bahrain app do not need to undergo PCR testing on arrival, unless arriving from a Red List country.

GCC travellers with proof of vaccination are also exempt. All other travellers must have a Covid‑19 PCR test (at their own expense) on arrival.

The fee for this is 36 Bahraini dinar (Dh350), which covers a test on arrival and two further tests, one to be conducted on the fifth day and another on the 10th day of the visit. The fee is the same no matter how long travellers are staying in Bahrain, and there is no minimum stay requirement.

Arriving passengers who do not have exemption from quarantine rules must remain in home or government-appointed hotel accommodation for 10 days. Another PCR test will be taken on day 10 and a negative result will end this quarantine period. Travellers can pay for their tests before arriving via the BeAware Bahrain app. Cash is also accepted, but this may cause delays.

Which airlines are flying to Bahrain?

Etihad is one of several airlines operating between the UAE and Bahrain. Courtesy Etihad
Etihad is one of several airlines operating between the UAE and Bahrain. Courtesy Etihad

Emirates is operating flights from Dubai to Bahrain. The airline is currently flying 14 times a week to the kingdom. Flydubai is also operating flights.

From Abu Dhabi, Etihad Airways has resumed twice daily flights to Bahrain. Air Arabia operates to Manama from Sharjah and Gulf Air, the national airline of Bahrain, is also flying regularly to Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah.

What restrictions are in place in Bahrain?

Hotels and leisure facilities in Bahrain are open but restrictions are in place, and many indoor facilities are only open to vaccinated individuals. Courtesy Four Seasons
Hotels and leisure facilities in Bahrain are open but restrictions are in place, and many indoor facilities are only open to vaccinated individuals. Courtesy Four Seasons

Indoor dining services, gymnasiums, swimming pools, cinemas, spas, games centres and other indoor services are reserved for vaccinated and recovered citizens, residents and visitors only, who must present proof of vaccination or recovery from the virus.

People who have not been vaccinated or recovered from Covid‑19 will have no access to the above venues, as well as events, exhibitions and conferences. Children under 17 are exempt from these rules.

Hotels are open with social-distancing rules and safety measures in place. In accordance with local health authorities, some restaurant and facility services and hours may also be modified. Face masks are mandatory in all public places.

On Sunday, the Ministry of Health in Bahrain confirmed there were currently 144 people with Covid-19 in a critical condition and a further 244 people receiving treatment for the coronavirus.

Of the current 13,990 Covid-19 cases in the country, it said that 13,846 people were stable.

What do I need to do when flying to the UAE from Bahrain?

From May 13, travellers flying from Bahrain to Abu Dhabi who are fully vaccinated no longer need to quarantine when landing in the UAE. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Airports
From May 13, travellers flying from Bahrain to Abu Dhabi who are fully vaccinated no longer need to quarantine when landing in the UAE. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Airports

Departing travellers need to be at Bahrain International Airport at least three hours before their flight to allow for additional screenings. Access to the terminal is limited to passengers and staff only, and temperature screening is mandatory at entry points and before boarding flights.

Bahrain has not been added to Abu Dhabi's Green List of destinations from where travellers can fly without the need for quarantine. However, the establishment of a vaccine corridor between Bahrain and the UAE means no quarantine will be required for travellers flying into any airport in the UAE.

Travellers will need a negative PCR test to fly back to the UAE and those staying in Abu Dhabi must follow the most up-to-date PCR testing requirements for the emirate.

Updated: May 24, 2021 09:44 AM

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