Dubai: Restaurants Offer Discounts for Receiving Coronavirus Vaccine

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AP Photo/Frank Augstein

Restaurants in Dubai are offering discounts to diners who have received a Chinese coronavirus vaccine to support the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) state vaccine campaign, local outlets noted on Tuesday.

“Patrons who have had the COVID-19 [Chinese coronavirus] vaccine will receive deductions off bills – 10 percent off for the first dose and 20 percent off for the second dose,” Emirates Woman magazine reported.

Gates Hospitality owns all four restaurants in Dubai currently advertising the vaccine deal. One social media flyer for the offer reads, “Spread Love, not Rona.”

“Diners must show proof of inoculation, such as a medical certificate, to get the discount,” Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported on Monday.

Gates Hospitality founder Naim Maadad confirmed to Emirates Woman on Tuesday that the discount offer was available at four of the group’s restaurants in the UAE capital city. Maadad told the magazine it was the company’s “firm determination” to “support … the Dubai Health Authority” in their coronavirus vaccine drive.

“The goal is to encourage people to go in for the vaccination and incentivize those who volunteer for doing their bit in the fight to stop the spread of the dreaded virus,” he said. “It is certainly a move in the right direction as it is the only solution currently available to break the chain of rapid spread.”

The UAE’s government says it has already administered coronavirus vaccinations to 2.5 million people in the federation, which is home to about ten million people. This means that the UAE currently ranks as the second-highest vaccinated nation globally, in terms of the Chinese coronavirus, after Israel.

The UAE launched its coronavirus vaccine drive in December after approving for emergency use a vaccine made by the U.S. drugmaker Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech and a vaccine candidate produced by the Chinese state-run company Sinopharm.

“Dubai’s health authority said this week it would have to scale back on vaccinations after Pfizer announced shipment delays due to works at its key plant in Belgium. The Sinopharm vaccine is still freely available,” AFP reported on January 25.

UAE health authorities have recorded a spike in the number of new coronavirus cases across the country since the New Year, prompting the government last weekend to issue stricter limits on social gatherings. Despite the new mandates, Dubai’s restaurants and other hospitality services are allowed to continue operating as long as they enforce health protocols, such as increased distances between tables. Dubai remains open for tourism since reopening to the industry in July.

The ride-share app Uber recently announced discounted rides for people in the UAE who use the app for transport to a coronavirus vaccination clinic.

“Those intending to be vaccinated and use Uber to get to public vaccination centers across the UAE, they will receive 25 percent off two rides up to Dhs20 [$5.45] each. This offer begins on January 25, 2020,” Emirates Woman reported on Monday.

The UAE recorded 3,591 new coronavirus cases on January 25, a record high for the fourth straight day. The federation, made up of seven emirates including Dubai, documented 285,147 infections and 805 deaths from the Chinese coronavirus as of Tuesday.

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