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A comprehensive step-by-step instruction guide to setting up in the UAE, from applying for your residence visa and resident ID to renting a home and opening a bank account.


If working in the UAE, you will need a residence visa that is sponsored for employment. The validity of the visa is two years, or three years if you work in some free zones or government jobs. If you leave the UAE for a period of more than six months at any one time, your residency will lapse.


  • Aged under 65 years old
  • Minimum six months validity on passport
  • Have a job offer or be currently employed
  • Visit visa or entry permit (organised by employer)
  • Medical completed (and passed)
  • Resident ID application is underway
What to bring
  • Passport (original)
  • Resident ID application form certified by the Registration Centre at the Emirates Identity Authority (EIDA)
  • Entry permit
  • Medical test certificate
  • Attested education certificates
  • Company’s establishment immigration card and trade licence (copies)
  • Five passport-sized photos
  • Dhs.310 fee (plus typing fees)


  • Your company’s PRO (public relations officer) should handle and process all the paperwork, meaning you won’t have to visit the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs yourself for an employment sponsored residence visa.