UAE travel corridors: an ultimate guide to Bahrain, Greece, Serbia and Seychelles

Vaccinated travellers can now fly to a number of destinations with no quarantine requirements

From left to right: Greece, Bahrain and Serbia have opened travel corridors with the UAE. Unsplash
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The UAE has established travel corridors with four countries this month, allowing vaccinated residents to visit Greece, Serbia, Seychelles and Bahrain with no quarantine requirements when they arrive.

Between them, the four countries offer tropical retreats, European city breaks, Mediterranean getaways, world-class archaeological sites and coveted cuisine, meaning most of your travel needs are covered.

Here's what you need to know before you go.


Vaccinated travellers from the UAE can travel to Greece with no quarantine or testing required. Unsplash
Vaccinated travellers from the UAE can travel to Greece with no quarantine or testing required. Unsplash

Steeped in history, drenched in sunshine and famed for its food and hospitality, Greece will be a no-brainer for many UAE travellers this summer.

As the country’s tourism minister Harry Theoharis Tweeted this week: "Greece is offering what people need. Calm and care-free moments on the road towards normality.”

From Tuesday, fully vaccinated travellers will be able to travel freely between the UAE and Greece, with no quarantine requirements upon arrival. Vaccinated travellers are also not required to show a PCR test before flying, unless it is required by their chosen airline.

The country has reopened its borders to visitors from a select group of countries in time for its summer season, so popular tourist hot spots will likely be busy over the coming months.

Many tourists will head straight to the country’s islands – from fun-loving Mykonos to low-key Paros or honeymooner-favourite Santorini. Less-visited islands such as Kefalonia or Antiparos might be a better option for those still keen to avoid crowds. The only island currently not welcoming guests is Kalymnos, which is under an extended lockdown as coronavirus infections remain high.

For those opting to stay in Athens, the historic neighbourhoods of Plaka and Monastiraki await, or, for a quieter experience, you can head to the suburbs of Kifisia or Vouliagmeni.

Find suggestions for where to stay in the Greek capital here.

Restaurants, cafes and bars across the country reopened on May 3, with tables currently only set in outdoor spaces, and only six individuals allowed per table. These businesses can only operate between the hours of 5am and 12.30am, so if you are heading to Athens to sample its famous all-hours pre-pandemic nightlife, you may need to manage your expectations.

Archaeological sites across the country are open to visitors, with groups of up to three people, unless part of a family, allowed to enter at a time. Face masks and physical distancing are obligatory. Museums have also reopened.

Athens' famed Acropolis. Unsplash
Athens' famed Acropolis. Unsplash

Public beaches are also accessible across the country, provided that physical distancing is observed. Live events, including concerts, and theatre and dance performances, will restart on Friday, May 28, but must be held in open-air venues with only 50 per cent capacity.

Flight time from the UAE to Athens is just over five hours. Emirates offers flights from Dubai with fares starting from Dh2,595 ($706).

From Abu Dhabi, Etihad offers flights for Dh1,768, while Aegean Airlines and Wizz Air also fly between the two capitals.

All visitors are required to fill in a Passenger Locator Form the day before entering the country.


Belgrade, Serbia's capital, sits between the rivers Danube and Sava. Unsplash
Belgrade, Serbia's capital, sits between the rivers Danube and Sava. Unsplash

A new travel corridor between the UAE and Serbia means vaccinated travellers can now fly between the two countries without having to quarantine, as long as they can show proof from a recognised authority that they have received their final shot of any Covid-19 vaccine.

This landlocked country in the middle of the Balkans remains relatively under-the-radar, so is ideal for those looking to steer clear of the madding crowds.

Nestled between the Danube and Sava rivers, capital Belgrade is famed for its nightlife, but current restrictions mean that cafes, bars and restaurants are only allowed to operate at 50 per cent capacity, between the hours of 6am and 10pm. Nonetheless, you’ll still be able to feast on Serbia’s signature hearty soups, juicy kebabs and pastry-covered burek pies.

Dubbed the White City, Belgrade’s Socialist-era blocks jostle for space with art nouveau architecture, while Skadarska offers a taste of bohemian Belgrade, with its cobbled streets and galleries.

Those looking for a more active holiday should head to the south-east corner of the city, where, in the Avala Mountain and National Park, hiking trails and stunning views abound. Alternatively, take a stroll around Kalemegdan Park, which is set within the walls of a Roman fortress.

Flydubai currently offers daily direct flights to Belgrade, with fares starting at about Dh2,100.

Flying time is just under five-and-a-half hours.


Seychelles offers a secluded tropical getaway. Unsplash
Seychelles offers a secluded tropical getaway. Unsplash

Seychelles opened its borders to international visitors on March 25 and has since established a travel corridor with the UAE that allows vaccinated travellers to enter the country with no quarantine requirements.

The Indian island nation has long been a go-to for travellers seeking a secluded stay, and a plethora of private villa resorts make it a good option for people looking to take social distancing to the nth degree.

Find out what it's like to travel to Seychelles at the moment here.

There is currently an 11pm curfew in place and everybody is required to wear a face mask in public, or incur a significant fine.

The view from hilltop Spa at Four Seasons Resort Seychelles.
The view from hilltop Spa at Four Seasons Resort Seychelles.

In Seychelles, white sandy beaches, turquoise waters, lush green surrounds and all the other hallmarks of a world-class tropical retreat are combined with the world's highest vaccination rate, making the archipelago a prime spot for travel during the pandemic.

It has even launched a Workcation Retreat Programme, which allows anyone with a valid passport to live and work in the tropical paradise for a maximum period of a year.

The destination is only a four-and-a-half-hour flight away from the UAE, and connectivity has been enhanced by the launch of a weekly Air Seychelles flight, with fares starting from Dh1,260.

Etihad operates flights to Mahe Airport on Fridays, Saturdays and Tuesday, with prices starting at Dh3,515.

Emirates offers a daily service, with fares costing from Dh3,775.


The Manama skyline. Unsplash
The Manama skyline. Unsplash

Bahrain is a little more than an hour's flight from the UAE, making it a good pick for those wanting a change of scenery without having to venture too far.

It may be minuscule, but Bahrain's scope and diversity may surprise you. With human settlement dating back at least 5,000 years, Bahrain is dotted with museums and archaeological sites, including the Unesco-listed Dilmun Burial Mounds, which many historians believe to be the world's largest prehistoric cemetery. At the same time, the capital city Manama is a vibrant urban centre, with a stellar food, art and shopping scene.

A new travel corridor between the UAE and its Gulf neighbour means that vaccinated travellers will not need to quarantine upon arrival or undergo any Covid-19 testing procedures. However, all passengers must complete a health declaration form before flying.

Once in the country, indoor dining facilities, gyms, swimming pools, cinemas, spas, games centres and other indoor services are reserved for vaccinated or recovered citizens, residents and visitors only, who must present proof of vaccination.

Emirates is currently flying to the kingdom 14 times a week, while Etihad Airways has resumed twice-daily flights. flydubai, Air Arabia and Gulf Air also provide connectivity between the two countries.