We all know that we need a residency visa to legalize living in Dubai. Since the number of people interested in moving to the UAE and living in Dubai is increasing day by day, we tried to review the steps of obtaining an UAE residence visa from the beginning. So stay with us until the end of the article.
Who is eligible for a UAE residence visa?
In order to obtain a UAE visa, you must include one of the following groups:
- You will retire in the UAE
- You have bought a real state in the UAE
- You have made an investment in the UAE
- You are a dependent of a UAE citizen or foreign resident (child, parent, maid, or a close relatives)
- You will study in a UAE educational institution
- You will work in the UAE, under a governmental office or in a privet company
Types of UAE residence visas
There are different types of residence visas in Dubai that are as follows:
- UAE work visa, it is for foreigners who are employed in the UAE and are granted a work permit.
- UAE student visa, it is for foreigners who have been accepted to study at an educational institution in the UAE.
- UAE family visa, it is for close family members of UAE citizens or foreign residents.
- UAE investment visa – long term residence, It is for people who invest in the UAE. This type of visa is issued for a longer period of time, usually over 10 years.
- UAE retirement visa, It’s for adults with enough financial strength to want to retire in the UAE.
What are the requirements for a UAE residence visa?
You will need a lot of documents to apply for an UAE residency visa. These documents include:
- Your original passport
- The UAE visa application form, obtained online or through the relevant typing center
- Two passport size photos, in line with UAE visa photo requirements
- Your entry visa
- Proof of your sponsor’s legal residency / UAE citizenship
- Proof you have passed a medical fitness test
- Proof of UAE health insurance plan
- For family visas, include proof of family ties, such as birth or marriage certificates
- For a work visa, your sponsor have to include the work contract and copies of company’s valid trade license and valid firm card
UAE residence visa application
You can apply for a residence permit when you have entered the country with your entry permit. You should also note that in most cases you cannot apply with this entry permit and need a sponsor for this action, such as your spouse, employer, etc.
Who can apply for my UAE residence visa?
You will need a sponsor to apply for this visa. On very few occasions, you can sponsor yourself. Below these sponsors are checked:
- If you are an investor or you bought a real state in the UAE, you could apply yourself and your company or real estate serves as sponsorship.
- For a UAE family visa, your family member is your sponsor.
- For a UAE student visa, your school is your sponsor.
- For a UAE work visa, your employer is your sponsor.
How to apply for UAE residence visa?
All of the above are the introduction and prerequisites for this part of the article. We hope you have carefully studied the above sections.
First of all, your sponsor will apply for your entry permit in one of the following ways:
- The Federal Authority for Identity and citizenship
- The ICA’s eChanel portal
- The mobile apps for Apple and Android
- The General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs –GDRFA either online (see the websites) or in-person. If your host want to do it in-person they have to do so by one of the licensed typing center of the GDRFA in each Emirate or through one of the Amer centers in Dubai.
- GDRFA mobile apps for Apple and Android
When you are in the UAE, your sponsor must to apply for your residence visa at the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs of the relevant emirate in that you will live.
When it’s time for your application, they would pay the UAE residence visa fee, as you know it is depending on validity of your visa.
When your application is accepted, the GDRFA will affix a residence visa on your passport and you would obtain an Emirates ID, valid for the same period as the visa.
UAE residence visa fee
The cost of an UAE residency visa varies based on how long it is issued. The UAE residence visa fee is about 100 dirham for 1 year. You may not know but you must to pay processing fee, it’s depending on where to apply. This cost could range from 70 dirham if you apply in-person and 40 dirham if you apply online.
Given that, you have additional cost too, like fees for medical exams and health insurance.
Benefits of having UAE residence visa
Foreigners wishing to work and live in the UAE need a residence visa. This visa has many benefits for its holder, which we will review below some of them.
- You can open bank account
- You can get a bank loan (personal or car loan)
- You have visa free access to several countries
- Your children can attend government or privet schools
- You can get driver license
- You can access to government health services and health insurance
The difference between the UAE entry permit and residence visa
The difference between the two can be understood from their names. Entry permit allows the holder to enter the country and is valid for a certain amount of time, usually 3 months.
Entry permits are issued based on your purpose of your trip. For example, the entry permit for tourists is the same as their tourist visa.
Your sponsor will apply for your entry permit before you enter the country. After you have entered the country with this entry permit, your sponsor can apply for your residence visa. He or she could apply for it from the relevant visa issuing authorities as mentioned above.
Also, some nationalities do not need permission to enter the UAE or receive it upon arrival in the country.
How long can I stay with the UAE residence visa?
The duration of the residence visas varies according to your purpose of the trip and are issued for 1 to 3 years that can be extended.
However, retirement visas and investment visas are issued for 5 to 10 years and can be extended.
Getting UAE residence visa extent before expiry
30 days before the expiration of your residency visa, your sponsor must apply for an extension. Your sponsor could also renew your visa after it expires when it is within the UAE residence visa expiry grace period. It should be noted that the renewal of a residence visa is quite similar to the first time you want to get a residency visa.
What is the UAE residence visa expiry grace period?
UAE authorities have provided 30 days as a grace period that starts right after your visa expires. This means that if your visa is finished, you can stay in the UAE for an extra 30 days. However, if you do not renew your visa within 30 days, you must leave the country and you have to receive entry permit to come back again.
If you have stayed in the country after the Grace period, you will be fined per day.
UAE residence visa over stay fee
Fines are as follows:
- For the first 6 months (180 days) – 25dirham per day
- For the second 6 months (180 days) – 50 dirham per day
- For every day after 1 year has passed- 100 dirham per day
UAE visa renewal for divorced women and widows
In October 2018, a new law was introduced to make divorced or widowed women stay in the UAE. In this way, they can live in the country for one year after their divorce or the death of their spouse without a sponsor. The law applies to the woman’s children.
It should be noted that the woman and her children are on the father’s visa at the time of the death or at the time of divorce and their visas must be valid at that time. So they could apply at the GDRFA by submitting the following:
- Proof of death or divorce
- Proof of accommodation
- Proof the woman is able to financially support herself
- The Emirates ID card
- Medical fitness certificates
This type of visa can only renewal for one time.
How can I get a Dubai residence visa?
Dubai is one of the cities of the Emirates. Getting a Dubai residency visa is like an UAE residency visa. It’s done as described above.
You have to have a sponsor in Dubai (or invest / buy a property). Then your sponsor has to apply for your entry permit. When you enter the country, your sponsor must applly for your residence visa at one of the licensed typing centers of the general Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affaires (GDRFA) in Dubai or an Amer center.
United Arab Emirates Residency Visa Types
The UAE residence visa has a variety of types that are checked below:
- Getting residency through employment
Foreigners working in Dubai or the UAE must also apply for a residence visa. Your employer must apply for your entry permit into the country and your residence visa. It also needs to provide a business certificate. For more information, read the Dubai work visa and permit article in our website. If the residence is provided by the employer, foreigners who also support their family will need to earn about 3,000 dirhams per month. You can also read, major cost of living in Dubai, for more information on the cost of living in Dubai.
- Getting residency by buying property
You can get a Dubai residence visa by buying a property in the UAE. It should be noted that the purchased property must be completed and worth at least 1 million dirhams. For more information, be sure to review this article get UAE residency visa by buying property in Dubai.
- Getting residency through company registration
You can obtain Dubai residency by registering a company in the UAE. This residence visa allows you, as a foreigner, to become a shareholder in local companies and hire employees in the UAE.
What is green residency permit?
The good news is that you can apply for UAE residency without a sponsor after the new news announced by the Emirati authorities. In this announcement, various types of new permits were announced that UAE has become a great destination for living and working and, of course, investing.
In this announcement, different types of green residence permits were announced for investors, skilled employees, self-employed individuals and their family members.
What is a green residence permit and who is granted? Everything you need to know about this is explained to you below:
- 5 years residence permit for worker
According to the news, some professions can get a 5-year green residence visa without a sponsor or employer. These groups are as follows:
- Green residence for freelancers (self-employment)
The applicant must apply at Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation for a freelance or sef-employment work permit.
Minimum educational level should be bachelor’s degree or specialised diploma. Here is a guide of how you can get a freelance visa in Dubai if you need more information.
- Green residence for skilled employees
The applicant must have a valid employment contract. They must be classified first, second or third occupational level as per MOHRE.
Minimum educational level must be a bachelor’s degree.
- 5 year green residence for investors and partner
Another group that can include a green residence visa and do not require sponsorship are investors and partners. Among the required documents are investment approval and proof.
Thank you for accompanying us until the end of the article. As you may wish to stay in Dubai and the UAE. Many people are looking to get an UAE residency visa, which in this article we examined the types of resident visas of the UAE and the ways to get it and the required documents.