UAE is built on the shoulders of expatriates. With the largest expat community in the world, UAE has a population and workforce from every corner of the world. The expats from over 200 nations make up about 88% of the total population of the UAE. To cope with this, UAE has multiple visa options for the expats to choose from. This article deals with the different types of residency visas in UAE so you can take an informed decision before applying.

Types of Residency Visas in the UAE

Types of Residency Visas in UAE

If you are planning to move to UAE soon, you should know about the different visa types it offers. According to your goals and situation, you need to choose the visa type that suits your needs and aims in the best way. Here goes.

Student Visa

Let’s start with a simple one. These residency visas are for students in the UAE who are looking to get admission to educational institutions.

The student visa has a validity period of one year. The student has to renew the visa on annual basis. This is to be repeated every year until the degree program is completed.

If you have a brilliant academic record, you can also apply for a five-year student visa in UAE. The criteria for the five-year student visa are to have a grade of 95% in secondary school OR a 3.75 GPA in University.

Documents Required

  • A copy of your passport (validity of at least six months)
  • Passport-size photo having a white background
  • A copy of the admission letter
  • The receipt of visa and tuition fees
  • IF you are already holding any visa, attach the current visa copy as well

Domestic Worker’s Residency Visas

If you are looking to get a job in UAE as a domestic worker, this residency visa type is perfect for you. A domestic worker visa covers the jobs like a maid, cook, private driver, housekeeper, babysitter, etc.

Who can sponsor you?

  • The person who is going to sponsor should have a salary of 25,000 AED (minimum)
  • Sponsor and domestic worker should not be related
  • The sponsor should be a UAE resident already; he should be living there with his family
  • If the sponsor is sponsoring a private driver, the sponsor must have two personal cars registered under his or her name in UAE

Documents Required

The domestic worker should have the following documents:

  • A copy of the passport
  • A copy of the residency visa in the UAE
  • Passport-size photo having a white background
  • Medical fitness certificate from the worker’s country

The sponsor should have the following documents:

  • Visa application
  • A copy of the passport
  • IF the sponsor and the domestic worker are of the same nationality, the sponsor has to submit proof of non-relation
  • A copy of the resident visa
  • Passport-size photo having a white background
  • A copy of the health insurance card
  • Salary certificate
  • Bank statement
  • A copy of the labour contract
  • Tenancy contract. This should be of an abode having at least two bedrooms

Specialist Resident Visa

These visas are best suited for you if you belong to the fields of science, technology, or knowledge. This is a residency visa granted to the workforce having special talents to work in the Emirates. To attain this visa, ongoing employment is mandatory.

The validity period of a specialist visa is ten years. If, after ten years, you still meet the requirements, the visa can be renewed.

Visa Requirements

  • If you are a scientist, you must be accredited by the Emirates Scientist Council
  • If you are applying in the culture and arts field, you must be accredited by the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development
  • If you are an investor, you must have the patent valuation approved by the Ministry of Economy
  • The exceptional talents must either be published in globally recognized journals or documented by patents
  • If you are an executive, your company should be a leading organization on a global scale

For doctors and specialists, there are several requirements, of which, at least two should be fulfilled.

  • If you are a PhD, the degree must be from a university that stands on the list of the best 500 universities worldwide. Furthermore, you must have experience of at least ten years
  • You must have contributed to your research field in a large-scale scientific research
  • You must be a member of a recognized organization well known in your field
  • Your skill or speciality must be specifically needed in UAE
  • You must hold a certificate of appreciation in your field of work
  • You must have a scientific book or a research paper published in a recognized publication

Retirement Visa

A retirement visa in UAE is for people who are above 55. This is a five-year visa that can be renewed if the requirements meet after the validity period. To apply, you must meet the following criteria:

  • You must have savings of 1 M AED or more
  • You should have an ongoing source of income of at least 20,000 AED/month
  • You can have a combined 2 M AED – 2 M AED of property and savings

Documents Required

  • A copy of the passport
  • A certificate of marriage (if the applicant is a spouse)
  • Current UAE residency visa
  • An Emirates ID

More documents are also required to authenticate you meet the criteria. These are the documents like your bank statement, salary slip, proof of savings in UAE, etc.

If you require details specifically for a retirement visa in Dubai, check out this article on Skyloov.

Company Investor Visa

These residency visas are best for foreigners who are either the owners of their company or hold shares in one, in the UAE. You can also apply if you are yet to start your business in UAE. This visa has a validity period of three years and can be renewed if the conditions are still met after this time duration.

With this visa in hand, you can live and work in the UAE.

Documents required

If you are investing in a government entity or a Freezone company, the following documents are required:

Company documents:

  • Trade license
  • Immigration card
  • Share certificate
  • Memorandum of Association
  • Certificate of Incorporation

Investor documents:

  • Passport
  • Passport-size photo having a white background
  • Bank statement
  • Current or previous visa (if any)
  • Previous or current Emirates ID (if any)

To know about the types of investment visas in the UAE, check out this article.

Having knowledge about visa types is imperative before applying. We hope this article gave you a head start in your research.

If you are a real estate investor and have been in this business for a long, UAE’s 10-year or 5-year Golden Visa might also intrigue you.