Dubai is one of the top destinations when it comes to expats’ choices; the figures show that Dubai enjoys an annual influx of hundreds of thousands of people. So if you’re one of those people looking to start a life here, these are some things to take into consideration when relocating to Dubai.


Dubai is a city, not a country

It is situated on the Persian Gulf coast of the United Arab Emirates (the UAE). The UAE is a country, consisting of seven smaller emirates and Dubai is one of those emirates. The seven emirates are Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Fujairah, Ras al Khaimah and Umm al Quwain. Abu Dhabi is the capital of the UAE.


There are different kinds of visas

Residence visas: In Dubai are sponsored by the employer and issued by the Ministry of Labour. Family members can be sponsored by a resident in the UAE (i.e.: husband, father).


Free Zone visa: Free Zone visas are issued if the company office is registered within free zones, such as Jebel Ali (JAFZA), Dubai International Airport (DAFZA), and TECOM. Unlike other visas, a free zone visa does not require the approval of the Ministry of Labour. A free zone visa allows residents to switch jobs freely between companies registered with the same free zone.


Regular visa: Regular visas are visas based on sponsorship. The sponsor must be a UAE national. This kind of visa limits the chances of an employee switching jobs easily, and the sponsor has the right to ban entry to the UAE for 6 months.



Family members: Once you obtain your resident’s visa in the UAE, you have a right to bring family members such as parents and spouse and sponsor their visas. This choice is limited to those with salaries above AED 4000-6000, and who have an official accommodation within the country.


Maids visa: Residents wishing to sponsor a maid can do so if their salary is not less than AED 6000. Keeping in mind that single men cannot sponsor a maid.


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