3 Ways to get a UAE Residency Visa

uae residency visa

The UAE is, by far, one of the most attractive destinations in the world to reside. It offers those who reside hear the benefits of a luxury lifestyle, numerous business opportunity and world-class amenities. A high standard of living, coupled with economic and personal safety makes the UAE Residency Visa a highly valuable document to have.

Relative to its value, getting a UAE residency visa is not difficult. There are typically three pathways available to foreign nationals to gain residency in the UAE.

  1. Gaining residency through employment, wherein your employer is your sponsor.
  2. Purchasing real estate, wherein the developer of the property is your sponsor.
  3. Setting up a company, wherein your company is your sponsor.

Note that in all cases, family visas may be granted to the immediate family members of those holding the primary visa.

UAE Residency Visa Facts

  • A residency UAE residency visa is issued for up to 3 years and is renewable, upon expiration, indefinitely – as long as the residency status at the time of renewal, permits.
  • A resident visa enables permanent residency.
  • A resident visa may be passed to immediate family members (spouse and children under the age of 18).
  • A resident visa grants its holders the right to a national ID card which is required to open bank accounts and register for most services within the country.
  • Those who hold a UAE residency visa whilst living abroad will be required to enter the UAE at least once every 6 months to maintain resident status.

How to Obtain a UAE Residency Visa

Resident visa, i.e. residence permit in the UAE, may be obtained subject to the following regulations:

Invest in Real Estate

For a 2 year resident visa (renewable) many choose to invest in residential real estate. This allows residents to benefit financially, whilst they reside in the UAE. The real estate property value must be over AED 1,000,000 (~USD 366,000) in order to qualify for residency.

Become Employed

Employees in the UAE benefit from the simplest route to residency. With an employer as a resident sponsor, employees are eligible (required) to apply for residency in the UAE. The process takes up to 3 weeks to complete.


Incorporation of a company in the UAE is a convenient means of gaining residency. The process may take up to four weeks and the expenses incurred are low. Note that it is not necessary for a company to officially operate or conduct any business to become eligible – it may be purely formal.

Click here to learn more about how to setup and incorporate a company in the UAE. There are many options and several pathways to incorporate. If you would like more information on this matter you may contact us here.

Zola Group offers holistic corporate services to local and global business clients. Our most popular comprehensive services include company setup, incorporation, residency and banking services. Contact our professional corporate services consultants via phone or email to inquire about how we can help you achieve success in this region's most rewarding emerging market.