Emirates checkin reception at Le Meridien hotel

Emirates Dubai Connect Explained for DXB Layover Passengers

by Dubai Travel Planner

What is Emirates Dubai Connect?

Dubai Connect is a complimentary hotel service offered by Emirates for passengers that have a long layover between flights through Dubai International Airport (DXB).  It comes with many terms and conditions, but with some careful planning, it can be a great and efficient service to get through a long layover in Dubai comfortably and smoothly – offering you a hotel room AND meals.

Looking for the “first night free in Dubai” offer? This is a separate limited-time offer for passengers with Dubai as their final destination travelling over winter 2020/21. You can see our complete guide to the Dubai free night deal here.

Who can avail Dubai Connect?

Dubai Connect Services are available to passengers with a connecting stopover time of 10 to 24 hours. This applies to all cabin classes (First Class, Business, and Economy). 

These terms up been updated with the re-introduction of the Dubai Connect service from 1 December 2020.

NB: Previously Business & First Class passengers could avail this offer with only a 6-hour layover, (Economy 8-hours). This has now been extended to 10 hours for ALL passengers.

The itinerary must be a single booking ticketed on one ticket. The ticket must be issued on an Emirates (176) document or a Qantas (081) document.

If you are looking at a layover less than 10 hours, then we suggest you look up these handy guides instead:

Emirates Layover Passengers DXB

Dubai Connect – Frequently Asked Questions

How do I book Dubai Connect?

This complimentary service can be booked at the time you book your flights if going through a travel agency. (Note we are not a travel agency and cannot do this for you).

If you are self-booking through Emirates website, after booking your flights, you can go into “manage my booking” with Emirates immediately and up to 24 hours before your flight. There is a quick form to fill in online that will tell you pretty much straight away if you’re eligible.

Do I need a transit visa to use Dubai Connect?

Emirates previously asked that passengers take care of their own visa requirements, however, with the re-introduced service from 1 December 2020, Emirates will now help passengers with their visa on arrival. You can read more about whether you are eligible for a visa on arrival or must obtain a transit visa here.

Note that many nationalities are eligible for visa on arrival for free, or you can apply for an Emirates sponsored complimentary visa on arrival for a maximum stay of 24 hours. If your application is rejected by the UAE authorities, however, Emirates cannot offer you the Dubai Connect service.

All passports regardless of nationality must have a validity of at least 90 days.

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Do I have to clear customs to use Dubai Connect?

Yes, the reason you must have a valid visa is that you are actually leaving the hotel to avail this service. You may choose to check your bags through to your final destination and only take a carry on bag for your layover.

Is there current a requirement to complete a COVID test when I arrive in Dubai?

This situation is continually changing based on your passport nationality, your origin and your destination. We recommend you check current information directly with Emirates here.

Does Dubai Connect cost me extra?

No, as long as you meet the eligibility criteria above, this is a free service to transit passengers. You may be asked to leave credit card details when checking in to your hotel for any incidentals only. You will be given transfers and meal vouchers along with the hotel room.

Through which airport and airlines can I use Dubai Connect?

At present, Emirates only flies through DXB – Dubai International Airport. It is only available to Emirates customers and certain Qantas codeshares. Both your inbound and outbound flights to and from Dubai must be Emirates flights (marketed by Qantas or Emirates) or Qantas flights (marketed by Emirates or Qantas).

Codeshare flights other than EK5000 and QF8000 flights are not eligible. The offer is not available on flights with other airlines and/or where Emirates is the marketing carrier only.

Can I extend my stopover times to use the Dubai Connect service and freshen up between flights?

Emirates Dubai Connect is only available if there are no better connection times available to get you between your origin and destination.  If an earlier flight connection is available, you must take this before trying to avail Dubai Connect. It is really only designed for passengers taking their less-frequent long-haul services to help smooth out their long journey.

Do I get to choose my hotel with Dubai Connect?

Your hotel is determined by your ticketing class, and available rooms in each of the hotels. The accommodation provided will be in the Copthorne Hotel Dubai, the Le Méridien Airport Hotel Dubai, the Arabian Park Hotel Dubai, or another alternative at the discretion of Emirates.

No guarantees are given on which hotel will be allocated and Emirates reserves the right to modify or cancel this offer at any time without notice. Offer is subject to availability.

Pictured a deluxe room inside the 5* Le Meridien Airport Hotel Dubai. Business and First Class passengers are likely to be placed here with a great range of dining choices, pool, spa, gym & entertainment.
Inside the Le Meridien hotel adjacent to Dubai Airport

Can unaccompanied minors use the Dubai Connect Service?
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No, passengers under 18 can only use Dubai Connect when accompanied by an adult.  Up to a maximum of 2 children with one adult can be accommodated. (We read this to mean if you are travelling with 2 adults, up to 4 children, over 2 rooms)

What happens when you arrive in Dubai

You should have already been issued your hotel voucher along with your boarding passes when you boarded your flight at the origin airport.

After passing through passport control, take this voucher with you to the Emirates Chauffeur car services counter for transportation to your hotel.

You will be checked in at your hotel at a special Emirates reception desk and be issued meal vouchers that cover the length of your stay. At the completion of your stay, a complimentary van or car service will return you to the airport in plenty of time for your connecting flight at DXB.

Emirates checkin reception at Le Meridien hotel

Can I leave my hotel during the layover period?

Yes, you may travel into other parts of Dubai during your layover stay should you wish, but Emirates will not cover any costs beyond getting you to your hotel room and the meals onsite in the hotel. If you take any taxies and tours beyond this, its’s at your own cost and your responsibility to be back at the hotel in time to connect for your next flight.

What if my flight connection at DXB is over 10 hours but I do not feel comfortable leaving the airport?

If you qualify for Dubai Connect but do not wish to avail the external hotel room, you can opt to relax and unwind in the Emirates Dubai Connect airport lounge inside DXB instead on a complimentary basis (no beds, but showers and meals provided).

Alternatively, there is the sleep ‘n fly Sleep Lounge A Gates and another at C-Gates in DXB or the Dubai International Terminal Hotel (both at your own costs) airside that don’t involve clearing customs.

Can I choose my own hotel instead of one selected by Dubai Connect?

By all means, there are many reasonably priced hotels you could choose to stay at close to the airport, at your own expense. If you opt to use Dubai Connect, you will not get to choose the hotel.

Good to know! If your connecting flight is delayed or cancelled for any reason with Emirates, the same hotels are made available to transit passengers delayed by longer than 10 hours, with meals provided as described above.


You can read more about Dubai Connect eligibility and conditions with Emirates here


Alternatives to Dubai Connect

Looking for alternative accommodation near to DXB? If you are not eligible for Dubai Connect but still fancy a lie down between flights without travelling far, we recommend you try:

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Or check out all available nearby options here:

Booking.com

We hope this will help you decide if Dubai Connect is the right solution for you flying with Emirates. We’d still love you to stop on by on at least one leg through DXB though! Even in the peak of summer, there can still be fun things to see and do on a short break or stick around even longer – check out our itinerary ideas.


Take me back to the Dubai Essential Planning information page

Please note we are not a travel agency, nor an agent for Emirates. This site is a travel blog to help newcomers to the UAE self plan their trip, we cannot book your flights, hotels, visas or connections for you. We may make a small commission if you click on any of our recommendation links.

Dubai Travel Planner

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20 comments

D Morgan November 17, 2020 - 4:39 pm

Given all the Covid related issues with travel now i do not want to leave the terminal to use Dubai Connect during my transit in December. Can i request to stay in the transit hotel?

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner November 17, 2020 - 6:33 pm

This is understandable, you would need to enquire directly with Emirates or your agent issuing the ticket. I suspect they will say to use the Dubai Connect service you must leave the airport as Dubai International Hotel is not one of the hotels used by Dubai Connect. You could alternatively use a sleep pod within the airport and decline the use of Dubai Connect for your long connection.

Reply
John Joseph April 7, 2021 - 10:11 am

Are the Lounges in Dubai airports open during these times ?

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner April 11, 2021 - 7:59 am

Yes lounges are open in DXB but you will find COVID safety measures and distancing rules in place, some changes to food service

Reply
Arian Jabari June 3, 2021 - 11:13 pm

Hello… Is dubai connection service charges us an additional cost on the ticket, or this service is available for free along with the ticket (for layovers more than 10h) ?

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner June 4, 2021 - 2:51 pm

If you’re an eligible passenger it is currently a free service offered by Emirates.

Reply
Anish shaikh October 21, 2021 - 7:29 pm

I have transit more then 20 hours…can I get free hotel and food ……or I have to take visa for go out…..I want only stay less then 20 hours do I need visa or iget free visa…..please help me out thanks

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner October 23, 2021 - 9:38 am

You will need to contact either the agent who booked your ticket or, if you booked online, Emirates directly to ask them what entitlements you have. If you had no choice but to book with a long layover, they should be responsible for arranging your Dubai Connect accommodation and will help you with how to apply for a transit visa, if applicable.

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Edward Ameyaw December 18, 2021 - 5:58 pm

Please I booked at an Emirates office in Ghana. The agent advised me to submit the following information when it is about 14 days to my departure:
1. Copy of your passport information page
2. Copy of a passport sized photograph
3. Name of passengersBooking reference
4. Ticket number
5. Email address so we can share your visa status

My departure is on 20th December so I did the submission on 7th December. After the confirmation receipt email, I not yet received any email on whether visa is granted or otherwise, can I travel on my booked date and will I be assigned a hotel on arrival at Dubai?

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner December 19, 2021 - 9:35 am

You will need to take this up with your travel agent or with Emirates directly. This is a Dubai travel blog, we cannot help with specific queries.

Reply
Tracey March 27, 2022 - 4:59 am

We have a 14 hour layover in Dubai, filled out all of the forms after being notified by Emirates that we were eligible for the Connect services but have never received confirmation that our hotel is taken care of. Is this typical or should we follow up? I an not find a number to do so however, do you have one, if we need it? Thanks!

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner March 29, 2022 - 7:13 pm

You would need to enquire with Emirates direct but it’s our understanding that you may not be told what hotel you’ve been allocated until you land.

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Allen April 8, 2022 - 4:43 pm

Are we allowed to check out checked-in baggage at Dubai when availing of the Dubai connect service for an 18-hour layover?

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Dubai Travel Planner April 9, 2022 - 10:14 am

Hi Allen, you would need to confirm with the airline directly but my understanding is as its a connecting flight, you do NOT get your check baggage back between flights. You’ll need everything you want to access for your layover in your carry on luggage.

Reply
Vanessa Tormey July 5, 2022 - 3:59 pm

If Emirates change your flight from a 2 hour stopover to a 17 hour, 3 days after you booked, can you book Dubai connect? I’m travelling in January 2023.

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner July 5, 2022 - 4:06 pm

Yes, we believe in this circumstance when Emirates has moved the flight timings and there’s no faster connection then they are responsible for your layover accommodation in Dubai. Please reach out to the airline if you booked direct or through your travel agent and they should be able to confirm your Dubai Connect booking.

Reply
HEMANG SHAH August 20, 2022 - 12:38 pm

DEAR TEAM,

MY PASSENGER AT THE DUBAI AIRPORT RIGHT NOW, WE HAVE SUBMITTED ALL HIS DOCUMENT BEFORE 12DAYS ,
eK -PNR-DTNTQW
PAX NAME -URVISH HITESHKUMAR THAKKAR

YOUR AUTO REPLY EMAIL — ALSO COMING AFTER THAT NO REPLY FROM YOUR SIDE,

KINDLY DO THE NEEDFUL ON ABOVE WITH URGENT BASIS,

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner August 23, 2022 - 2:34 pm

We are a travel blog, we have no connection to Emirates airline; you will need to raise your query directly with Emirates

Reply
Alisha September 26, 2022 - 11:34 am

Hello, Can one room accommodate 2 adults and 2 children or will 2 rooms need to be booked?

Reply
Dubai Travel Planner September 26, 2022 - 9:55 pm

It may depend on the hotel you are allocated by Emirates. As long as you are eligible and booked for 4 people, you should be given the correct room(s).

Reply

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