Coronavirus: Dubai airports to sell face masks, gloves, sanitizer in vending machines

A vending machine stocked with PPE at a Dubai Airport. (Twitter)

Dubai’s airports have installed vending machines stocked with face masks, gloves, and sanitizer for travelers to purchase to combat the coronavirus pandemic, according to the government of Dubai’s Media Office.

“Dubai Airports eases the purchase of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for travelers, with the installation of vending machines that sell PPE at Dubai’s airports,” a tweet from the media office read.

Dubai has gradually been rolling back restrictions at its airport.

On Friday, Emirates enabled an option for customers to book flights out of Dubai to 16 destinations in 12 Arab countries, starting July 1.

The airline's website allowed booking flights to destinations in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, Iraq, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, Lebanon, Jordan and Sudan.

However, the airline was keen to emphasize that while it is allowing bookings, the situation remains dynamic and could be subject to change.

“Currently some of our flights are available for booking starting 1 July, however the situation still remains dynamic and these flight services could be subject to change. We aim to provide our customers with as much notice as possible should there be any changes,” Emirates said in a statement to Al Arabiya English.

Flights out of the UAE were suspended on March 23 as officials moved to contain the spread of the coronavirus, officially known as COVID-19. Etihad, Emirates and other Gulf airlines have been offering flights out of the UAE for those looking to return, but incoming flights are limited.

It is currently unclear when all government restrictions on passengers will lift. The UAE has temporarily banned visas on arrival for all nationalities and banned its citizens from traveling outside the country.

On April 29, Etihad Airways said that it would be delaying the return of regular passenger flights until June 16.

In early May, Etihad and Emirates chiefs said that it could take three years for air travel demand to return to pre-COVID-19 levels. Emirates airline said on Sunday that it planned to cut some of its staff to sustain its business operations in the face of the coronavirus downturn.

Globally, airlines have been hit hard by the unprecedented shutdown of global travel due to the coronavirus pandemic. The industry’s representative body, the IATA, said in April that domestic air traffic is down around 70 percent, with a recovery over the coming six months likely to be slow due to the economic fallout of the virus.

The IATA also predicts that airlines will lose around $314 billion in revenue from the coronavirus pandemic.

Read more:

Coronavirus: Dubai Health Authority to phase in non-urgent healthcare services

Dubai’s Emirates airline plans to cut staff amid coronavirus crisis

Coronavirus: Resuming economic activities in the UAE is ‘necessary’, says Dubai Ruler

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Last Update: Monday, 01 June 2020 KSA 11:29 - GMT 08:29
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