Indians should double check their luggage before boarding flights to the UAE to make sure that things banned by the gulf country is not in the baggage as a slight mistake would lead to imprisonment and deportation.
Many Indians travelling to the UAE buy medicines from the homeland as it is less expensive here. But they are usually unaware of the drugs that are banned in the UAE, and end up landing in jail after carrying these drugs into the country. Cooked or home-made food is also in the banned list.
The Consul General of India in Dubai has published detailed guidelines on banned items on its website.
Travel guide of banned items & Guidelines for bringing medicines & drugs to the UAE
Banned items by Dubai Customs include
- All kinds of Narcotic drugs (Hashish, Cocaine, Heroin, Poppy Seeds, Hallucination Pills, etc.).
- Goods intended to be imported from boycotted countries.
- Goods from Israeli origin or bearing Israeli trademarks or logos
- Crude Ivory and Rhinoceros horn.
- Gambling tools and machineries.
- Three layers fishing nets.
- Original engravings, prints, lithographs, sculpture and statues in any material.
- Used, reconditioned and inlaid tires.
- Radiation polluted substances.
- Printed publications, oil paintings, photographs, pictures, cards, books, magazines stony sculptures and mannequins which contradict Islamic teachings, decencies, or deliberately implying immorality or turmoil.
- Any other goods, the importation of which is prohibited under the authority of U.A.E. customs laws or any other laws in the country.
- Forged and duplicate currency.
- Cooked and home-made foods.
Source: Dubai Customs.
Guidelines for bringing medicines & Drugs in UAE
- As certain chemicals and drugs are banned in UAE, it is essential to check and ensure that the medicines which someone is carrying does not contain a banned or restricted substance. List of drugs and medicines banned in UAE are available on the website: www.uaeinteract.com/travel/drug.asp
- If for medical or emergency reasons one needs to carry any medicines, it should be ensured to have a medical prescription from a UAE licenced doctor. If treatment was undertaken outside UAE, one must carry both a doctor’s prescription as well as detailed medical report, both of which should be suitably attested.
- Residents and non-resident patients can bring into the UAE a maximum of 3 month supply of prescription medicine, for their personal use.
- Psychotropic medicines can be brought by non-residents to cover their personal consumption for a maximum of 3 month period.
- Psychotropic medicines can be brought in by resident in a quantity sufficient for 1 month consumption. However, residents can bring a maximum 3 month supply if the medicine is not available in the UAE provided that they obtain the prior approval of the Drug Control Department
- Resident and non-resident patients should not bring narcotic medicines into the country without the prior approval from the Ministry of Health. Each case will be studied and approved. A valid prescription and medical report from the concerned hospital or department will be required.
- Medicines that arrive in the country via postal courier cannot be released to the patient unless the above requirements are fulfilled.
- For more information related to restrictions on carrying of medicines, drugs and chemicals into UAE, one must check Dubai Customs website or www.dubai.ae beforehand.
- Be careful of carrying in poppy seeds which are banned, so avoid accidentally carrying bakery products that might contain such seeds. Also banned is qat leaf, betel leaf or nuts, niswar, gutkha, which while admissible in some countries is not permitted in the UAE.