The UAE government has announced that it will soon introduce transit visas for tourists, making it possible for holiday-makers travelling via the country to stay on for 48 hours at no cost.

While the implementation date for the policy is yet to be confirmed, media reports state that the transit visa will be made available through express counters at passport controls in airports in the UAE, granting travellers access to emirates such as Abu Dhabi.

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The transit visa may be extended for up to 96 hours for 50 dirham, which is approximately R185.

According to Gulf News, an estimated seven in 10 international passengers landing in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and other UAE airports in 2017 were in transit.

Relaxations in existing UAE visa policies have also been introduced, including a review of the residency system to make provision for two-year extensions for university students, while for expats, “the visa can be extended by a six-month period in case of an over-stay, provided that applicants want to work in the country,” according to Condé Nast Traveller.

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