Stay in Dubai, work “remotely” anywhere, here is what you should know about Dubai remote visa

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  • What is the Dubai Work Remote Visa?

The Dubai Remote Work Visa, or Virtual ‘Nomad Visa’ program was launched in Dubai in early 2021.  

The Dubai Work Remote Visa program allows individuals working for companies overseas to obtain a remote working resident visa in Dubai to allow them to reside and live in the UAE. 

The Visa is valid for 1 year and is renewable after 1 year and onwards. 

The program grants access to all the standard services that residents benefit from in Dubai, including banking, telecoms, utilities, workspace rental, healthcare and schooling.  It allows global workers to live and work in UAE whilst undertaking work for companies or with companies from other countries.

  • How do I obtain a Dubai Work Remote Visa?

In order to obtain a Dubai Work Remote Visa you must apply through the Visit Dubai Visa portal.  Collect and submit the correct documents and meet the relevant threshold requirements to obtain the remote freelance 1 year resident visa.

The portal is connected to the UAE Immigration system and Immigration issue the visa itself.

  • What documents do I need to obtain a Dubai Work Remote Visa?

You will need the following high resolution current document copies in order to apply for the Dubai virtual nomad visa:

  1. Current Passport – with a minimum of 6 months validity remaining – clear high resolution copy
  2. Health insurance with UAE coverage validity – Local Health Insurance or Travel Insurance covering UAE
  3. For employees – proof of employment from a current employer with a minimum one-year contract validity, a minimum of USD 5,000 per month salary, with last months payslip and 3 preceding months’ bank statements.
  4. For business owners – proof of ownership of the company for one year or more, with an average monthly income of USD 5,000 per month and 3 preceding months bank statements.

PPG can assist with all documentation and the full remote visa application process.

  • What are the costs for the Dubai Work Remote Visa? 

The overall government fees for the Dubai Work Remote Visa 1 year visa are AED 2,300 (USD 620).  This includes the fees for the processing of the visa and the costs from Dubai Immigration.  This is for a 1 year visa.

Renewal costs for the Dubai Work Remote Visa for year 2 are the same as above – AED 2,300 (USD 620) each year.  The renewal of the visa will require a new application at the end of year 1, with the same documentation requirement and process.

Note that payment of the relevant fees does not guarantee approval of the application. The fees and timelines may change based on country of citizenship, application service required and whether you are applying from the UAE or from overseas.

The above fees do not include Health Insurance costs – the Work Remote Visa holder will need to arrange health insurance for themselves as part of the Visa set up process.  Health insurance costs will depend on a number of factors – age and health conditions.   PPG can introduce you to a number of health insurance providers to assist and will coordinate as part of the visa process.

The applicant can use Travel Insurance, but this will need to be converted to locally registered UAE Health insurance once the visa application has been done.

The above does not include any additional service fees that the applicant may request, for example the applicant may wish to request a PRO company such as PRO Partner Group (PPG) to assist with the collection, attestation and organisation of documents, application and visa process on their behalf – additional service fees will apply in this case.

The above fees do not include any foreign document attestation costs that may be required if the application needs to get their qualification documents, company document or proof of employment etc notarised legalised and attestation in their country of origin.  PPG can assist fully with document attestation for the visa applicant as needed – we have network of third party attestation agents in foreign countries to facilitate this for clients.

If the visa applicant also wishes to sponsor their spouse, and children in the UAE then this is possible and can be undertaken after the remote visa is obtained.  Note that additional fees will apply for spouse and dependant visas, and the main visa holder will need to rent accommodation in Dubai and produce a Dubai Municipality Ejari lease contract as part of the dependant visa applications. 

  • Some key frequently asked questions (FAQs) on the Dubai Remote Working Visa.
  • Is the work remote visa available in Dubai only?

Yes, at the moment this is a Dubai only initiative.

There are freelancer options in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and a number of the UAE Freezone.

  • What are the Conditions? Minimum Salary requirements, qualifications etc for the Dubai Remote Working Visa?

Passport with a minimum of 6 months validity

Health insurance with UAE coverage validity

For employees: proof of employment from a current employer with a one-year contract validity, a minimum of US$5,000 per month salary, last month’s payslip and 3 preceding months’ bank statements.

For business owners: proof of ownership of the company for one year or more, with an average monthly income of US$5,000 per month and 3 preceding months’ bank statements.

All applications will be reviewed and processed by Dubai Tourism Authority and Immigration

  • How long does it take to setup the Dubai Remote Working Visa? 

Based on our current experience, and assuming all documentation is in place and correct, it is currently taking about 14 days to process the Dubai Work Remote Visa.

  • What are the health insurance requirements? 

Health insurance with UAE coverage validity, or travel insurance with healthcare coverage (minimum 2-week validity), which can then be changed to UAE health insurance once your visa formalities have been completed.

  • Can the individual Dubai Remote Working Visa holder sponsor their dependents? 

Yes.  As above the individual remote visa holder can sponsor their dependents, they will need to rent appropriate accommodation in UAE to do so.

  • Are there any nationality restrictions? 

There are no specific nationality restrictions on the work remote / nomad visa. However, UAE Immigration reserves the right to reject applicants for national security reasons.

  • How long is the visa valid for? 

1 year – and renewable each year with the same application process.

  • How is my income taxed on the 

It is possible to obtain a UAE Tax Residency certificate using this visa program.  The personal income tax and corporate income tax level is 0% in the UAE.  However, your individual tax situation will depend on how many days your physically reside in the UAE and in other countries, the tax regime in other countries will differ considerably and we recommend you seek specific expert tax advice on this where it relates to your global income.

  • How often do I need to enter the UAE to ensure the visa remains valid?

You need to enter the UAE at least once every 6 months to keep the visa valid.

  • Does the individual need to be in the UAE to apply? 

At the moment yes, due to travel restrictions the visa applicant needs to be in the UAE to apply.  The application can travel in as a tourist and change their status to the work remote visa 

  • Can the individual Dubai Remote Working Visa holder open a local UAE bank account? 

Yes. This work remote visa program provides applicants with the ability to live in Dubai in a similar manner to residents, by providing access to phone lines, resident ID cards, banking facilities and the ability to rent accommodation and send children to school.  The individual will be able to open a personal bank account.  Bank account opening is subject to the individual UAE bank application process.

  • What are the government fees for the Dubai Remote Working Visa? 

It costs $620 in total, inclusive of application fees, processing costs, medical and Emirates ID.