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UAE Golden Visa

Discover the exclusive opportunities offered by the UAE Golden Visa program with this informative article. Explore the eligibility criteria, benefits, and application process to gain insights into this prestigious long-term residency program, unlocking a world of possibilities in the United Arab Emirates.

  • 13 Jul 2023
  • 5 min read

To simplify, “what is UAE Golden Visa”? or Golden Visa UAE meaning, let’s first decipher what this category of Visa denotes and who can apply for it.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Golden Visa has emerged as a game-changing initiative since its introduction in 2019. It offers a unique opportunity for foreign individuals to obtain long-term residency in the UAE, accompanied by a host of exceptional advantages.

Eligibility for the UAE Golden Visa is determined based on exceptional skills and qualifications in various fields. The beneficiaries include investors, entrepreneurs, scientists, specialised talents, outstanding students, and frontline heroes. By meeting the specific criteria outlined by the relevant authorities, individuals can determine their eligibility for the Golden Visa.

The requirements for obtaining a UAE Golden Visa vary depending on the type of residence sought. For investors, the Visa can be obtained for ten years without a sponsor by fulfilling specific financial criteria. Real estate investors can obtain a 5-year Golden Visa by owning properties of a certain value or purchasing properties through approved local banks. Entrepreneurs, specialised talents, and other categories have unique requirements to fulfil.

There are several advantages of the UAE Golden Visa. Holders obtain a multiple-entry Visa valid for six months before a standard residence permit gets issued. It has a validity period of 10 years, providing long-term residency in one of the wealthiest countries globally. One of the key advantages is the ability to renew the Golden Visa after its expiration without the need for a sponsor, providing flexibility for travel and living arrangements. One can sponsor family members, and the Visa allows for the sponsorship of domestic helpers. Golden Visa holders receive an Esaad privilege card, offering substantial discounts in the UAE and other countries.

Additional benefits and advantages are specific to residents in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. In Abu Dhabi, Golden Visa investors can enjoy discounts on selected properties and favourable mortgage rates. They are also entitled to reduced premiums on health insurance plans for families and individuals. In Dubai, Golden Visa holders have the opportunity to obtain a UAE driver’s license more quickly and receive discounts on higher education.

Applying for a UAE Golden Visa can be done through different methods, such as the ICA or the GDRFA. The application processes involve filling out forms, providing necessary documents, and paying the applicable fees. The UAE government has introduced online platforms and applications to streamline the application process and make it accessible to eligible candidates.

The cost to apply for a UAE Golden Visa includes entry permit fees. The fees cover various components and aim to streamline the process while ensuring necessary financial contributions.

In recent updates, Abu Dhabi has extended the validity of the Golden Visa across all categories. This expansion offers enhanced residency opportunities for professionals and researchers in fields related to science and knowledge. Additionally, holders of the Golden Visa can now sponsor their spouses, children, and parents, regardless of age, reinforcing the commitment to family reunification.

These modifications to the Golden Visa system demonstrate the UAE’s dedication to attracting and retaining top talent worldwide. 

What Is the UAE Golden Visa?

This section will simplify your understanding of what is Golden Visa UAE.

  • The Golden Visa system in the United Arab Emirates revolutionised long-term Visas, offering unparalleled opportunities for foreign individuals. This exclusive Visa empowers them to reside, work, or pursue education in the UAE, accompanied by exceptional advantages.

  • The UAE endeavours to entice and embrace new residents from around the world, fostering growth and cultural diversity.

  • The Golden Visa encompasses various beneficiaries: investors, entrepreneurs, scientists, exceptional students and graduates, humanitarian pioneers, and frontline heroes. This ground breaking initiative aims to attract and welcome foreign talents, fostering a vibrant community in Dubai and beyond. 

Who Is Eligible to Apply for a UAE Golden Visa?

This section will explain the Golden Visa UAE eligibility.

  • To initiate the eligibility checking process, visit the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs & Port Security (ICP) website. There, you will find a questionnaire you need to complete by answering a series of questions about yourself. The questionnaire begins by inquiring whether you are currently residing in the UAE. If your answer is affirmative, you will proceed to the subsequent questions. Next, you must give details about your financial situation and investments. 

  • You must possess exceptional skills and qualifications in various fields to determine your eligibility for a Golden Visa in the UAE, as listed below.

  • Outstanding high school graduates from UAE-based schools or graduates from accredited universities within the country with a minimum GPA of 3.8 are also eligible to apply

  • Specialists such as doctors or engineers specialising in specific fields and artists who have demonstrated exceptional achievements in visual arts, publishing, performing arts, designs and crafts, games and e-sports, or media

  • CEOs of companies earning a monthly income exceeding $13,600 (Dhs 50,000) can apply

  • Lastly, athletes, coaches, referees, sports doctors, sports therapists, or public sports figures with notable accomplishments can also be considered for the Golden Visa.

What Are the Requirements to Obtain a UAE Golden Visa?

The Golden Visa requirements vary depending on the type of residence sought. 

  • For investors in public investments, obtaining a Golden Visa for ten years without a sponsor requires a letter from an accredited UAE investment fund confirming a deposit of AED two million.

  • Alternatively, an industrial/business license and memorandum of association must demonstrate a capital of not less than AED two million

  • Furthermore, a letter from the Federal Tax Authority indicating annual payments of no less than AED 250,000 is necessary

  • Real estate investors can obtain a five-year Golden Visa by providing a letter from the Emirate’s land department stating ownership of properties valued at no less than 2 million dirhams.

  • Entrepreneurs may receive a 5-year Golden Visa if they own a technical or future economic project based on risk and innovation. Approval letters from an auditor confirming a project value of not less than 500,000 dirhams, the emirate authorities confirming the project’s nature, and an accredited business incubator to establish the proposed activity in the UAE are necessary.

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Golden Visa UAE benefits and advantages

The following are some of the significant UAE Golden Visa benefits.

  • One of the significant advantages is that the Golden Visa can be renewed after its expiration, ensuring continuous residency without needing a sponsor. Furthermore, holders are not required to reside in the UAE to keep the Golden Visa valid, providing flexibility for travel and living arrangements.

  • Golden Visa also allows sponsoring domestic helpers such as cleaners, nannies, and drivers. Additionally, Golden Visa holders receive an Esaad privilege card, granting them substantial discounts in the UAE and 92 other countries.

  • There is also specific benefit of Golden Visa UAE for residents in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. In Abu Dhabi, investors can enjoy discounts on selected properties. Banks offer reduced mortgage fixed-interest rates for real estate investors and attractive rates on savings accounts for non-real estate investors. Additionally, Golden Visa holders in Abu Dhabi are entitled to reduced premiums on annual health insurance plans for families and individuals, with extensive network coverage and a range of benefits both within and outside the UAE.

  • In Dubai, Golden Visa holders with a driving license from their home country can take a UAE driver's test without requiring extra lessons.

How to Apply for a UAE Golden Visa?

Different application procedures depend on the method chosen by the applicant.

For those applying through the GDRFA-Dubai Smart Application, these are the steps to follow:

  1. Candidates must download the GDRFA-Dubai application from authorised app stores.

  2. They must register a new user account if they don’t have one.

  3. They need to select the required service and attach the necessary documents. 

  4. They must pay the fees for the service.

Another option is to apply through the AMER Center. 

  1. Candidates should head to one of the service branches of the Amer Centers. 

  2. They need to select the required service. 

  3. They must submit the required documents to the service employee and pay the fees for the service. 

For individuals applying through the Dubai Land Department, here are some simple steps to follow. 

  1. Visit one of the Service Centres, submit the required documents, and pay the fees. 

  2. A medical examination gets conducted at the Centre; the Visa gets stamped on the Passport.

The required documents for all these application methods typically include the following:

  • Passport

  • Title Deed Certificate (electronic copy)

  • A personal photo

  • Valid health insurance

  • The original Emirates ID

Golden Visa UAE Application through ICA

The following steps outline the process for applying for a UAE Golden Visa through the ICA.

  • First, individuals need to visit the official ICA website. Once there, they should navigate to the “Public Services” section and select “Golden Visa.” Within this category, they should choose “Visa to Finalise the Procedures of Golden Residency.”

  • The next step involves providing the necessary information and submitting the required documents as instructed by the ICA. It is crucial to accurately fill in all the requested details and ensure the documents are uploaded correctly.

  • After completing the information and document submission, applicants will be required to pay the designated service charge. Following this, they must patiently await approval from the relevant authorities. After receiving approval, they can finalise the application process successfully.

It is important to note that if applicants do not reside in the UAE, the ICA will issue an entry permit with a validity period of six months. This entry permit can get extended for an additional six months to allow sufficient time to complete the golden residency process within the country.

Golden Visa UAE Application through GDRFA

For the GDRFA website method, applicants need to follow these steps.

Applicants must first visit the official GDRFA Dubai website. 

  • Once there, they need to select the desired Golden Visa service. 

  • The next step involves completing the Visa application form and attaching the necessary documents. 

  • Applicants must pay the required fees before submitting the Visa application.

Alternatively, eligible applicants can opt for the GDRFA Dubai Smart Application. 

  • To proceed with this method, they must download the GDRFA-Dubai application from either iOS or Android store. 

  • If the applicant doesn’t have a registered account, they must first create one. 

  • Afterwards, they can select the desired service and attach the required documents.

  • They must pay the necessary fees before submitting the Visa request.

What Is the Cost to Apply for a UAE Golden Visa?

The Golden Visa UAE price for an entry permit has undergone revisions by the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs, and Port Security (ICP). 

  • The updated pricing structure includes a fee of AED 1,250 for a six-month entry permit. 

  • This charge encompasses several components: AED 1,000 for issuance, AED 100 for the application, AED 100 for smart services, AED 28 for electronic services, and AED 22 designated for the ICP. 

Golden Visa UAE validity

  • Abu Dhabi has recently extended the validity of its Golden Visa from five years to an impressive ten years across all categories. Notably, doctors, specialists, scientists, and inventors are among those who can now benefit from the extended duration of the ten-year Golden Visa. These modifications to the Golden Visa system are a result of recommendations from relevant authorities, including the Abu Dhabi Office for Residents.

  • Holders of the Golden Visa are granted the privilege of sponsoring their spouses, children, and parents, irrespective of age. This enhancement reinforces the commitment to family reunification and provides additional avenues for individuals to bring their loved ones to Abu Dhabi.

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