Freelance Visas in Dubai: Requirements, Costs & More

Dubai is known for its luxurious lifestyle, impressive skyline, and bustling business environment. But did you know that Dubai is also a great destination for freelancers looking to establish their own businesses? Dubai offers freelancers the opportunity to showcase their skills and talents on a global stage. One way to establish yourself as a freelancer is by obtaining a freelance visa in Dubai, which comes with a host of benefits. This visa allows freelancers to legally operate their business in the city and take advantage of all the perks that come with it.

If you’re a freelancer and considering Dubai to expand your business or services, it’s essential to understand the types of freelance visas available, Dubai freelance visa cost, and the eligibility criteria that freelancers need to meet. So, let’s get started.

What is a Freelance Visa in Dubai?

A Freelance Visa in Dubai is a residence permit that allows you to legally live and work in Dubai as a freelancer or self-employed person. It frees you from being tied to a specific company and gives you the flexibility to work on your own terms with various clients. A freelance visa in Dubai grants you residency in Dubai for up to two years (with renewals possible).

Benefits of Obtaining a Freelance Visa in Dubai

There are several advantages to consider if you’re thinking about getting a freelance visa in Dubai:

1. Be your own boss

Enjoy the freedom and flexibility of setting your own hours and choosing the projects you work on.

2. Tax benefits

Dubai is a well-known tax haven, with freelancers enjoying some of the world’s most competitive tax rates. There’s no income tax, and corporate tax is only levied on businesses operating within the emirate’s mainland.

3. Potentially higher earnings

By taking on multiple projects, you can increase your earning potential compared to a salaried position.

4. Cost-effective setup

Freelancing often requires minimal overhead costs compared to a traditional business.

5. Family Sponsorship

In some cases, a Dubai freelancer visa can grant you the ability to sponsor your family members’ residency in Dubai.

Types of Freelance Visas in Dubai

There are two main categories of Freelance Visas in Dubai: the general Freelance work permit and the visas offered by specific Free Zones.

1. General Freelance Work Permit

This is the most versatile option and allows you to work independently across various sectors in Dubai. It caters to a broad range of professions, including writers, graphic designers, web developers, consultants, and many more.

2. Eligibility for a Freelance Visa

Here are some of the general requirements:

  • Valid passport for at least six months
  • Educational Qualification
  • Passport size photograph
  • Medical Insurance (having valid health insurance is mandatory)

Besides these, there are two main Freelance Visa options in Dubai, and each has its own income requirement:

3. Freelance Work Permit Visa

This visa is valid for one or two years and has a lower income threshold. The specific income requirement may vary depending on the issuing authority, but it’s generally less than the Green Visa requirement.

How to Apply for a Freelance Visa in Dubai?

Here’s a general step-by-step process for applying for a Freelance Visa in Dubai:

1. Gather Required Documents

Compile the necessary documents, including:

  • Passport (valid for at least 6 months) with copies
  • Educational certificates (minimum bachelor’s degree or specialized diploma)
  • Passport-size photographs

2. Secure Your Freelance Permit

Apply for the freelance permit through the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE) or the designated Free Zone authority depending on your chosen visa. This might involve online applications, fee payments, and potential approvals.

3. Apply for an Entry Visa

If you’re applying from outside the UAE, you’ll need to secure an entry visa to enter the country for further processing.

4. Medical Checkup and Emirates ID

Undergo a medical checkup at a UAE-approved facility. Apply for and register for an Emirates ID, which is the national identification card.

What Types of Freelance Activities Are Allowed in Dubai?

Dubai offers a wide range of freelance activities across various sectors, including:

While these categories are broad, some specific professions might have limitations or require additional approvals. It’s always best to consult with a business setup consultant in Dubai like Shuraa for the most accurate information on allowed freelance activities.

What is the Cost of Obtaining a Freelance Visa in Dubai?

The Dubai freelance visa cost generally starts from AED 7,500 to AED 18,500 for obtaining a freelance permit but can vary depending on a few factors, including:

  • Medical Test
  • Freelance permit/visa
  • Emirates ID

For the most accurate and up-to-date cost information, consult an expert at Shuraa Business Setup.

Can You Live in Dubai with a Freelance Visa?

A Freelance Visa in Dubai is specifically designed to allow you to both live and work in Dubai as a freelancer or self-employed person. When you obtain a Freelance Visa, it essentially grants you a residency permit in Dubai. This residency allows you to live legally in the emirate for the validity period of your visa (typically two years, depending on the visa type).

How Shuraa Business Setup Can Help

A Freelance Visa is a viable option if you’re looking to live and work in Dubai as a freelancer. Freelancers need to understand the visa types available, the application process, and other essential factors before making the move to Dubai. Therefore, consider partnering with a reliable business setup consultant like Shuraa Business Setup.

Shuraa Business Setup is a leading business setup consultant in the UAE, with extensive expertise in guiding freelancers through the entire process. We assist you with selecting the right visa type, application process, visa renewals, and even PRO services, our team can handle all the administrative burdens so you can focus on what you do best. 

Don’t Wait, Start Today! Contact Shuraa Business Setup for Your Dubai Freelance Visa