Returning A Body To Country Of Origin

To return the deceased to his or her country of origin, the body will need to be embalmed, and you will need to purchase a coffin.
Embalming can be arranged through the Dubai Health Authority and will cost around Dhs.1,000, which includes the embalming certificate. The body must be identified before and after embalming, after which it should be transferred to dnata at Cargo Village, which manages all air cargo leaving from Dubai International Airport, for shipping.

Cargo fees are calculated by the kilo and distance travelled. The total charge can be anywhere between Dhs.1,500 to Dhs.30,000. A coffin costs upwards of Dhs.1,200. When preparing the documentation, remember that dnata will require seven copies of each document and the translation. You’ll also need to arrange for a funeral company to receive the body when it reaches its destination. It is not obligatory for anyone to accompany the body during the flights home.


  • Death certificates have been collected from Dubai and the home country embassy.
  • The death has been registered with the Dubai authorities and the home country embassy.
  • The airline has been contacted in advance.
  • An unaccompanied coffin will need advanced confirmation.
  • Accompanying passengers will need a confirmed ticket.
What to bring
  • Cancelled passport (original and seven copies).
  • Local death certificate (original and seven copies).
  • Embassy/consulate death certificate (original and seven copies).
  • NOC from Dubai Police (original and seven copies).
  • NOC to embalm body (original and seven copies).
  • Accompanying passenger confirmed ticket and two copies.
  • Dhs.1,000-Dhs.3,000 cash (average cargo fees – this charge depends on the destination and can be more than Dhs.10,000).
  • Dhs.1,010 cash embalming fee.
  • Dhs.1,200 coffin (approximately – can cost up to Dhs.10,000).
  • Dhs.210 transportation of body by ambulance from hospital to Sonapur Medical Fitness Centre for embalming.


  • Make shipping arrangements through dnata (04 211 1111), which will handle the process and documentation.
  • If another person will be accompanying the deceased home, book a ticket. If the coffin will be unaccompanied, arrange for it to be collected at the destination.
  • Get an NOC from Cargo Village police station; make seven copies.
  • Request an NOC from the deceased’s home country embassy to send the deceased out of the country; make seven copies.
  • Submit all documentation to the dnata Export Office, Cargo Village; the accompanying person or undertaker must provide a letter of confirmation that they will accept the coffin.


  • Request an NOC from Dubai Police to embalm the body.
  • Submit the NOCs from Dubai Police and the embassy, the death certificates, and the deceased’s passport (copy) to Al Maktoum Hospital Mortuary.
  • The mortuary will issue an NOC to the hospital housing the deceased, and the body will be transported to Sonapur Medical Fitness Centre for embalming.
  • The body must be identified before and after embalming by the person making the funeral arrangements.
  • The embalming process takes two to four hours.
  • Collect the embalming certificate and wait until the body has been transferred to the dnata Export Office, Cargo Village; this must take place at least four hours prior to departure.
  • Submit all documents to the dnata Export Office.

Leaving the UAE

  • The coffin is weighed in the export cargo department and all paperwork is processed.
  • Pay the cargo fees.
  • The body is flown home.


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