Emirates, the national airline of Dubai, has announced a global leading initiative, in that it has begun on-site rapid COVID-19 testing on passengers.

The airline says that the new testing program began April 15, with travellers from Dubai to Tunisia tested.

Emirates says that this new test through a quick blood test has been created in coordination with the Dubai Health Authority with results in as little as 10 minutes and that the testing will also provide passengers with a COVID-19 test certificate, which some countries now require.

HE Humaid Al Qutami, Director-General of the Dubai Health Authority said, “We are glad to work with Emirates on the successful implementation of rapid COVID-19 testing at the airport for departing travellers.”

“To tackle COVID-19, we have been proactively working with various governmental organizations and the private health sector and we have implemented all necessary measures from public health protection to provision of high-quality health services in line with the latest international guidelines”.

“We believe strongly that the most effective solutions require close partnerships with other public and private sector organizations.”

Emirates also now requires that all passengers wear their own masks when at the airport and during boarding.

The question is whether other airlines will follow Emirates lead and if so how quickly and also whether cruise operators will adopt the same approach?

Written by : John Alwyn-Jones,