Banned substances in the UAE

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has a very strict, zero-tolerance anti-drug policy and conducts thorough searches at its airports using highly sensitive equipment.  Possession of even tiny amounts of illegal drugs has resulted in sentences of four years’ imprisonment for travelers entering or transiting the UAE.

A doctor's prescription should be carried with any medication that is brought into the country. 

Some drugs and medications that may be purchased over-the-counter in other countries are classified as controlled substances in the UAE and are thus illegal to possess. A person may be arrested and prosecuted for possessing prescribed or over-the-counter medicines containing, for example, codeine or similar narcotic-like ingredients.

Before you leave for the airport:

Travelers to the UAE are strongly advised to familiarize themselves with the rules regarding what medications they can and cannot bring into the country. 

Please contact the nearest Embassy or Consulate of the United Arab Emirates for advice if you are considering taking medications or other drugs into the UAE.

List of United Arab Emirates consulates (opens an external website in a new tab)