After around 66,000 Israelis flew to Dubai in November and December, the plans for visa-free travel appear to be on hold until July. Announcement this week comes as Covid rates increased in Israel and the UAE. Despite high level of vaccinations it is believed that it will still take months to vaccinate most of the population. In addition this takes time as the younger people who are more likely to travel will wait until March to get their first jab. They won't have a second jab until later and it takes weeks for antibodies to develop.
This postponement could also be due to other reasons. However it was believed that all the bureaucratic hurdles had been handled. Nevertheless Israel's diplomatic presence in the UAE is expected to increase and Israelis want to take part in IDEX, the Gulfood confab and cyber conferences coming up. That means that visa-free travel will likely affect average tourists more than the high level issues that are being formulated between the countries and underpin the flourishing ties.
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