Set up your company and get your UAE residence visa

Comments: 0

The UAE offers an extraordinary chance to foreign business people to become a resident of the Emirates.

But you might find the visa process hectic and exhausting. Don’t worry you are not alone. We can help you!

In a Free Zone, the most common type of residence visa is obtained through an employment contract with a Free Zone company.
Entrepreneurs who set up a business in the UAE can get a UAE residency visa through either an employment visa or investor visa. The latter is valid for 3 years and can be renewed easily.
Either of these two visas will allow you to apply for a dependent’s residence visa (see below).

The visa costs vary from one Free Zone to another. For example, Dubai South Free Zone (DWC) charges about AED 2,500, but Sharjah Airport Free Zone charges about AED 1,800.

Note that these visas don’t allow you to work outside your Free Zone.

First of all, you need to establish your business within one of the 40+ Free Zones in the country to be eligible for UAE residency. Once your company is registered, you can apply for a residency visa either by yourself or through our Select the package you prefer and our team of experts will assist you.

How to apply in 5 steps only:

Step 1:  Register for the E-channel service

Instruct your Free Zone agent or authorized typing center to register your company through the E-channel services platform. This new system removes paperwork and makes applications much easier and more transparent than before. Pay the fee of AED 2,500 plus the refundable security deposit of AED 5,000 and you will receive a notification as soon as you are registered.

Step 2:  Entry Permit

Next, you apply for your entry permit, also called an employment visa, an electronic document that will be emailed to you once it is ready. You can consider it as a temporary visa, valid for 60 days. It is usually issued within 15 days, however, if you use the express service, for an additional AED 100 you can get it in 5-7 working days.

Step 3:  Status Change

Once you receive your entry permit you need to transform it into a permanent visa if you are already in the UAE. This process is known as status change. There are 3 ways to do this change:

  • in-country
  • out of the country and
  • a boarder run.

The in-country status change is the easiest as it takes only 3-5 days and costs AED 750. Simply submit your passport to the immigration office and they will stamp and activate the visa.

Step 4:  Medical Fitness Tests and Emirates ID registration

A medical test is mandatory and will determine your eligibility to get the residence or not. It consists of a battery of blood tests for infectious diseases and a chest X-ray. You can get the results after 3 working days.
Only after receiving a clean bill of health can you apply for the Emirates ID card. The ID is required to open a bank account, for signing a tenancy agreement, and for other official uses. A three-year Emirates ID costs just AED 370.

Step 5: Residence Visa Stamping

The final stage is the visa stamp on your passport. This will be a full-page pink sticker. For this, you need to submit your passport to the relevant authority, and it can take up to 15 working days. Please note that you cannot travel outside of the country during this time!

Visas for Dependents

Once you get your visa, you can apply for a visa for your spouse, children under 18, and domestic staff such as a maid or driver. Elderly parents can also obtain a visa, but supporting documentation may be required. Extended families are not eligible.

The visa process is clear and straightforward if followed correctly. There are, however, some points you need to be aware of:

  • Your passport must have at least six months’ validity.
  • You need to have at least 3 empty pages in your passport for the visa stamping.
  • If you stay more than 180 days outside the country, it will invalidate your visa.

The best way to ensure your visa application runs smoothly is to work closely with your Free Zone or with a company formation. At, we have a range of visa packages and a team of professionals ready to assist you in every step of the residence visa process.

Focus on your business and we take care of the rest.


Click here for more information and request a quote for your residence visa or call us at +971 58 514 2021

Share this post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *