The Future of Travel in the COVID-19 Era: What’s Next for Dubai?

For many years before the pandemic, international business relied on travel – in March 2020, that suddenly changed.


Airports, once bustling centres of global travel and commerce, became oddly quiet – planes were almost empty.


International trip? Now, a Zoom call. Fancy business dinner? Now, another Zoom call!


But as this year progresses, there are signs that things are opening up. The UAE’s geographical position makes it an ideal travel hub, and its relatively successful containment of the virus has furthered its status as a highly desirable destination.


Requirements for entry to the country are strict but fair. Travellers from most countries (with the exceptions of hard-hit nations like India) can travel in -- but must complete a negative PCR test no more than 72 hours before their departure from their home country. Many must also complete a test upon arrival in the UAE – the full list can be found here.


PCR testing technology is getting better all the time, with results now ready within 24 hours. Overall, these policies mean there’s more red tape than usual, but if you plan in advance, it’s still very possible to make a trip to the UAE.


This year’s International Business Excellence Awards will reflect this new reality. We’re offering the option of attending a live event in Dubai, but customers can also attend the event virtually. This hybrid event format gives our customers the choice of what is most practical – and safe – for them.


By December 6th and 7th – when the Awards Final and Ceremony will be taking place – we hope that the pandemic will be far less severe in most countries, and that finalists and judges from other countries will feel able to join us in person in Dubai. But this is a proudly international event, and having a virtual option allows us to welcome entries from all over the world without the need for lengthy (and possibly risky) travel.


The choice is up to you! Whether you attend in-person or over the internet, you’ll still have the chance to:


The COVID-19 situation is still evolving fast, and we’ll make sure to update you with any new information about international travel to the UAE. But one thing is certain: after such a transformative year, it’s more important than ever to recognise business excellence and celebrate your team’s accomplishments!


The International Business Awards are now open for entries. If you enter before August 26th , you can get a special discount – enter now!