The latest UAE visa amendments explained

The latest visa overhaul has come into effect in the UAE, expanding the eligibility criteria for Golden Visa applicants and obtaining a Green Residence visa.

New visa rules launched in the UAE on October 3, 2022, making long-term permits to stay in the country, including the 10-year Golden Residence Visa and 5-year Green Residence Visa, more accessible for expats and tourists. The UAE Cabinet, led by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the UAE Vice President, Prime Minister, and Ruler of Dubai revealed the new regulations on April 18, 2022, which are aimed at attracting more talents to the country.

Even though Metropolitan Capital Real Estate doesn’t help in getting visas, except for investor visas, we are always ready to provide you with the latest information about new regulations, as well as help in purchasing/selling and renting properties in the UAE.

Golden Visa

The Golden Visa was first implemented in 2019, and allows its holder to live, work and study in the country without the need for a national sponsor. Moreover, Golden Visa owners also have the opportunity to be 100% owner of their business in the UAE.

Due to the new regulations, more people have an opportunity to apply for a 10-year Golden Visa, as well as sponsor his/her family members and domestic labourers without any limit in their number. Furthermore, the restriction to the maximum stay outside the country in order to keep the visa has been removed – previously a visa was cancelled if the holder was absent in the UAE for a period of six months or more. In the event of the death of the original holder of the Golden Visa, his/her family members have the right to stay in the UAE until the end of their visas.

From October 5, 2022, the Golden Visa is issued to investors who have become an owner of a ready-to-move-in real estate unit worth a minimum of AED 2M (USD 545K). Previously, a 10-year visa was issued to those who invested in the UAE economy from AED 10M (USD 2.7M), where at least 40% of the amount needed to be spent on real estate.

Among the categories of individuals who have the right to apply for a Golden Visa are scientists or researchers with high achievements, exceptionally talented people in arts, digital technology, sports, inventors and innovators, professionals with the highest rated skills, humanitarian pioneers, outstanding graduates from the Top-100 universities and UAE universities, as well as students of secondary schools in the UAE with high results, frontline heroes who have combat in crises such as Covid-19, and startup owners and entrepreneurs who correspond to additional criterias.

Green Residence Visa

A 5-year Green Visa is given to investors, entrepreneurs, professionals and freelancers from all over the world. The visa aims to improve the flexibility of the Emirati job market and doesn’t require a sponsor or an employer. Family members of the original holder of the Green Visa will also get benefits, and the validity of their residence permit should have the same duration. After the visa cancels or expires, the holder will be able to stay in the country for a period of up to six months.

A Green Residence Visa is given to:

Investors or partners with approval of investment and proof of investment. If there is more than one licence, the total investment capital is calculated. Previously, a 2-year residence permit was given to the participants in commercial activities, but from October 3, 2022 this will now be replaced by the Green Visa.

Freelancers and self-employed individuals must provide a bachelor’s degree or specialised diploma, as well as obtain a permit from the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation. Proof of income of AED 360K (USD 98K) for the previous two years is also required from the visa applicants. If the condition isn’t met, the individual will have to prove his/her financial solvency throughout the entire stay in the UAE.

UAE Entry Visas

Tourists who are interested in visiting Dubai, now have an opportunity to obtain a 5-year multiple-entry tourist visa instead of a regular tourist visa, which is given for 30 days. This allows foreigners to stay in the country for 90 days, and can be prolonged for the same period of time. The total period of stay should not exceed 180 days a year. To get a 5-year multiple-entry tourist visa, you should have USD 4K (or the equivalent in another currency) in your bank account for the last six months.

Other new entry permits are given for those coming to the UAE to study/train, visit relatives or for an entry permit for a temporary work mission.