UAE citizens and residents planning to travel during the coming school holidays now have more options for flying to the Seychelles.
Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, is adding more services to the holiday hot spot in the Indian Ocean to satisfy half-term travel demand.
From October 7, Etihad will add one additional flight per week between Abu Dhabi and Seychelles International Airport in Mahe, resulting in five weekly flights to the tropical island destination from the UAE capital.
From October 15 until October 24, to coincide directly with the UAE half-term holidays, Etihad plans to add another seven flights to the islands in the Southern Indian Ocean.
Located a four-and-half-hour flight from the UAE, the Seychelles is famed for its pristine beaches, tropical rainforests and marine life.
“Seychelles is a one-of-a-kind destination, and with vaccinated travellers in the UAE being able to fly there and back without quarantine, it is the perfect destination for a short getaway or a longer family holiday,” said Martin Drew, Etihad’s senior vice president of sales and cargo.
The airline is also reducing prices on flights to the Seychelles with a seven-day flash sale that ends on Saturday. Return flights in Economy class start from Dh1,795 for travel in October or November.
Tourists welcome in the Seychelles
With balmy year-round temperatures, the Seychelles is a good choice for a holiday any time, but October is one of the best months to visit for those who want to scuba dive and snorkel. That's because the sea is calm and visibility is at its clearest, thanks to a reprieve from both the south-east and north-west trade winds.
Tourism is open again in the Seychelles with the islands welcoming vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers since March. All visitors must present a negative PCR test, taken within 72 hours before departure, regardless of vaccination status.
Travellers who have been in Brazil, India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Cote d'Ivoire and Guinea in the past 14 days cannot yet fly to the Seychelles.
All holidaymakers must book to stay in approved accommodation; a list of all such hotels and guesthouses is available here. Tourists must also complete an online pre-travel authorisation form before flying to the Seychelles. Upon arrival, there's no quarantine to consider or additional restrictions on what you can do.
Etihad requires all passengers on any flight, including return flights to the UAE, to have a PCR test before boarding, so you'll need to make sure you include testing in your trip plans.
Upon return to Abu Dhabi, vaccinated passengers do not need to quarantine regardless of where they are coming from. And with the Seychelles being on the Abu Dhabi green list, even those who are not fully vaccinated can travel quarantine-free from Mahe.