In the last weeks we have been asked this question a few times and certainly everyone is talking about the MERS situation here in Riyadh. It is a concern. However bear in mind that in the population of nearly 30m there have only been c. 400 cases to date and many of these among the medical staff who have been directly dealing with MERS infected patients (MERS is not easily transmitted between people appearing to require direct or close airborne contact).

Some argue that the Kingdom has been slow to react to MERS but that is certainly also changing. Our view is that KSA will soon be like other countries (US, UAE, UK etc) who might get isolated cases but the standards of infection control, patient awareness and general hygiene neutralize the outbreak before it has a chance to spread.

So yes, although everyone is talking about it, we recommend our guests follow the advice of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Centre for Disease Control (CDC) which as of 2nd May was: “CDC does not recommend that travelers change their plans because of MERS”.


– The AEI Team

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