The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Emirates’ Chairman and Chief Executive, and Awadh Al Ketbi, Director General of Dubai Health Authority.
Sheikh Ahmed said: “Dubai is a leading global air transport hub, as well as one of the world’s most progressive cities in the area of e-government services. It’s a natural step to combine our capabilities to implement digital verification of Covid-19 medical records, which will also enable contactless document verification at Dubai Airport. This will tremendously improve the traveller experience, as well as the reliability, efficiency and compliance with entry requirements imposed by destinations around the world.”
Linking health systems with check-in system
Under the MoU, Emirates and the DHA will work to link the IT systems of DHA-approved laboratories with Emirates’ reservations and check-in systems, in order to enable the efficient sharing, storing and verification of passenger health information related to Covid-19 infection, testing and vaccination, all in a secure and legally compliant manner. The project will commence immediately, with the aim of bringing it to ‘live’ implementation to benefit travellers in the coming months.
Purchasing empty seats for more space
Meanwhile, Emirates’ economy class customers can now purchase up to three empty adjoining seats on their flight. These seats will be offered to all economy class customers holding a confirmed booking. Customers will not be able to pre-book empty seats, as these are subject to availability. Empty seats will only be offered for purchase at the airport check-in counter prior to flight departure, and costs range from AED200 to AED600 (US$55 to $165) per empty seat, plus applicable taxes depending on the flight sector.
Emirates has introduced this new seat product on the back of customer feedback, addressing the needs of a range of customers seeking extra privacy and space while still flying in Economy Class. This includes couples who wish to have the entire row to themselves (maximum of three seats in the same row), parents travelling with in-lap infants, or those who simply want the added assurance of more space while travelling during pandemic times.