Key Features of the UAE’s Revised Visa Policies for Expatriates

April 17, 2024
visa policy for expatriates

Since its inception, the UAE has been a focal point for entrepreneurs, investors, and business entities. Since the outset, the government has aimed to ensure ample opportunities for individuals to establish themselves. The recent implementation of new visa regulations in the UAE offers a variety of entry options into the country.  

With the introduction of immigration visas that eliminate the need for sponsors, extend visa durations, and offer more inclusive family sponsorship policies, the UAE is establishing a new standard for hospitality and opportunity. These reforms streamline the entry procedure and create a more adaptable and inviting atmosphere for individuals interested in working, investing, or discovering the UAE’s diverse cultural landscape and economic prospects.  

These recent adjustments carry substantial implications for investors and individuals seeking to establish their presence in the UAE. It’s vital to remain updated on these modifications as they can directly influence your future plans and ambitions.  

Let’s understand these significant changes so that you can make well-informed decisions for your entrepreneurial journey in the UAE. But before this, let us discuss the various kinds of visas available in Dubai.  

Types of Visas Available in Dubai, UAE  

In Dubai, UAE, various visa types cater to different purposes. These include:  

  1. Property Owner Visa:  
  • 5-year property visa: Requires a property investment of at least 2 million Dirhams, held for a minimum of 5 years, allowing family sponsorship.  
  • 3-year property visa: Granted for investments in properties valued at 1 million Dirhams or more, enabling family sponsorship.  
  • 10-year property visa: For investors with public investments worth AED 10 million, with specific conditions.  

Requirements for property investor visas include a monthly income of AED 10,000, property ownership, health insurance, among others.  

  1. Tourist Visa: Typically valid for 30 days, extendable for another 30 days.  
  1. Employment Visa: Issued to employees, valid for two years, renewable.  
  1. Business Visa: Typically valid for 90 days, extendable for business purposes.  
  1. Investor Visa: Valid for two years, renewable, issued to investors with businesses in Dubai.  
  1. Partner Visa: Similar to investor visas, based on the value of shares in a company.  
  1. Residence Visa: For employees and dependents, valid for two years and renewable.  
  1. Student Visa: For students studying in Dubai, typically valid for the study duration, allowing part-time work.  
  1. Family Visa: Issued to dependents of employees and investors, typically valid for two years, renewable.  
  1. Non-Immigrant Visa: Including short-term and long-term options.  
  1. Retirement Visa: Valid for 5 years, requiring property investment, financial savings, or a minimum income.  
  1. Golden Visa: Long-term residence visa for investors, professionals, and exceptional talents, valid for 5 or 10 years, renewable. This marks the initial step toward facilitating UAE residency.  
  1. Green Visa: Allows freelancers and self-employed individuals a 5-year residency without sponsorship, requiring specific qualifications and income stability.  

Opportunities for Investors with New Visa Rules  

The new visa regulations in Dubai present numerous significant advantages and prospects for investors and entrepreneurs, including:  

  • Simplified Entry and Extended Residency: Both the Green Visa and Golden Visa provide extended residency periods (5 and 10 years, respectively) without the need for company sponsorship or annual renewals.  
  • Family Support: Golden Visa holders have the privilege of sponsoring family members, such as spouses, children, and parents, facilitating the relocation of the entire family and fostering a life in the UAE.  
  • Access to Business Opportunities: The UAE boasts a dynamic business environment featuring free trade zones, and top-notch infrastructure. These visas offer access to this ecosystem, easing the process of establishing and expanding businesses.  
  • Vibrant Startup Scene: The UAE actively nurtures startups through incubation programs and funding avenues. The provisions of the Green Visa for self-employed professionals and freelancers further stimulate the development of innovative startups.  
  • Investment Prospects: The UAE presents diverse investment opportunities across sectors like real estate, tourism, technology, and renewable energy. Dubai’s new visa regulations streamline the process for investors to engage directly and contribute to the country’s economic advancement.  

Investor Visa Cancellation Process  

As an investor seeking to cancel your UAE visa, you have the option to do so either in person by visiting an Amer Service Center or online via the ICP website or ICP app.  

The cancellation process, irrespective of the visa type, typically requires 1-2 working days for completion for most visa categories. It entails submitting necessary documents, paying the relevant visa cancellation fees, and receiving the cancellation approval letter via email.  

Let SPC Free Zone Unlock Your Potential  

Undoubtedly, the new visa regulations in the UAE have unveiled thrilling prospects for investors. With the opportunity to obtain long-term visas, investors can now forge a stable and prosperous existence in the UAE.  

However, navigating the visa process and establishing a business can prove intricate. Hence, it is imperative to seek professional guidance from premier business setup advisors in the UAE.  

From company registration and licensing to visa procurement and locating ideal office spaces, we manage the intricacies, enabling you to focus on your vision. With SPC Free Zone at your service, bid farewell to bureaucratic obstacles and embrace the realization of your aspirations to leverage business opportunities in Dubai.   

Why Choose SPC Free Zone?

  • Conveniently located in the centre of Sharjah, we provide comprehensive on-site immigration services.  
  • With over 2000 carefully curated business activities tailored to your entrepreneurial goals, SPC Free Zone offers a wealth of options to realize your ambitions.  
  • Benefit from swift visa approvals in just 5 working days, accelerating your path to success. Upon obtaining your business license, unlock the potential for unlimited visa scaling and flexible workspace options.  
  • With on-site immigration visa services available, you can have your license issued in under 45 minutes.  
  • With no mandatory paid-up share capital and the option for 100% foreign ownership, it’s no wonder why many ambitious entrepreneurs choose to partner with SPC Free Zone.  


The UAE’s revamped visa policies offer unprecedented opportunities for expatriates, particularly in terms of immigration visas. With streamlined entry processes, extended residency options, and access to diverse business opportunities, the UAE presents a fertile ground for growth and innovation. Navigating these changes can be complex, but with the support of experienced business setup advisors like SPC Free Zone, individuals can excel in Dubai’s dynamic business landscape. 

Don’t wait, start your entrepreneurial journey today

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