Coronavirus: Dubai allows four passengers in van taxis as COVID-19 restrictions ease

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Four passengers will be allowed to travel together in Hala (Dubai taxi) vans booked via the Careem app from today due to new guidelines from the Dubai Road and Transport Authority (RTA), a statement from Hala read Thursday.

All taxis had previously been restricted to only two passengers by Dubai authorities in a bid to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

“As ever, we remain committed to using technology to unlock easy movement around Dubai. We are pleased to announce this positive move and hope it can make travel that little bit simpler for those of our riders who need to travel in groups, whether that be friends or families,” Clemence Dutertre, CEO of Hala said in the statement.

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Customers can book a Hala van through the Careem app, with two passengers allowed to sit in each of the back rows of the cab. Hala added that the price for the van service is identical to that of a normal taxi.

Hala urged customers to use the Careem app, noting that there are “limited Dubai Taxi Vans available for street hail in the city.”

Dubai has recently been expanding its efforts to combat the coronavirus and most recently increased its COVID-19 testing program. Some Dubai hospitals and drive-through testing centers are now offering PCR coronavirus nose swab tests for only 250 dirhams ($68) or less.

On Wednesday, the UAE reported a jump in coronavirus cases with 883 new infections, the fourth highest day on record followed by May 19, 20, and 21 early on in the pandemic.

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