Emirates is a state-owned airline and flag carrier of UAE. In a statement on Thursday the media office of the airline said, "Emirates will cover its passengers for COVID-19 related medical expenses and quarantine costs when they travel onboard Emirates, to and from the UAE and around the world, free of charge." The airline industry is hit by COVID-19 outbreak, Emirates had paused its operations in March. The airline is now planning to operate flights to 58 cities by mid of August. Earlier, the UAE had made COVID-19 testing compulsory for all the travellers.
Emirates, First Airline To Provide COVID-19 Medical Cover
Emirates group Chairman and Chief Executive, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum tweeted, "Emirates will be the first airline to offer free cover for COVID-19 medical costs for customers when they travel to & from UAE & around the world. This will boost travel confidence and once again position Emirates and Dubai as aviation industry leaders." The Dubai Media Office said that a passenger can not claim more than 150,000 euros ($173,600) for medical expenses. Additionally, a passenger can claim 100 euros per day for 14 days quarantine period.
Sheikh Ahmed also said, "We know people are yearning to fly as borders around the world gradually re-open, but they are seeking flexibility and assurances should something unforeseen happen during their travel." The COVID-19 Medical Cover policy is in effect already and will be in effect till October 30, 2020.
Corona Virus Effect On Travel Industry
Emirates had a fleet size of 270 commercial aircraft before the outbreak of the global pandemic. It operated from more than 150 cities from around the globe before they halted operations in March. It will take about 4 years for airlines to operate to "some degree of normality", said Tim Clark, Emirates President. The airline had earlier recruited about 60,000 employees and in March, they had reported a 21% rise in annual profits before the COVID-19 outbreak. The 60,000 employees include 4,300 pilots and about 22,000 cabin crews among other staff.