Freelance Visa in the UAE

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The modern world is moving at a breakneck pace. Freelancing is a type of labour that is growing increasingly popular. Flexibility is the ability to manage one's own work time and space independently, the ability to act on one's behalf, independence and freedom in lifestyle choices, the ability to work temporarily, and the ability to organize one's own free time all attract many talented and active people all over the world. This is a free market where success is defined by the qualifications, experience, and reputation of freelancers based on customer reviews. When working in Dubai, residents will discover a lot of flexibility, whether they want to start their own business or work as freelancers. With the rise in demand for the "gig economy," steps have been implemented to make it easier and less expensive for freelancers to work in Dubai. Thus, this service page will help you know all the intrinsic details about Freelancing Visas in Dubai. At Dhanguard, we understand the importance of autonomy and independence in your profession. That's why we guide you through obtaining a freelance visa seamlessly.

Understanding Freelance Visa in the UAE

A freelance visa in the UAE allows you to work independently in your field of expertise without needing a local sponsor. It's an ideal solution for entrepreneurs, creatives, consultants, and professionals seeking flexibility and autonomy in their careers. In November 2020, the UAE stated that UAE nationals and citizens, residents, and non-residents could apply for freelance licenses in the country to increase job prospects.

Freelancers can now legally work and live in the UAE, bringing their families and dependents.

For residents, a freelancer permit is required.

If you're in Dubai on your spouse's or parent's visa, you only need a freelancer permit to get started. Full-time professionals in the UAE can work as freelancers by receiving a pass. However, your sponsor and employer will provide you with a No Objection Certificate (NOC).

For non-residents, a freelancer visa is required.

Suppose you're not a UAE resident. In that case, you'll need to apply for a freelancer visa, a residency permission that permits you to live and operate as a freelancer in the emirate. You'll also need to apply for a visa to stay in the country.

Benefits of a Freelance Visa in Dubai

In Dubai, having a freelance license and visa has various benefits.

  • To begin with, it offers you the flexibility to work for different companies.

  • Becoming a freelancer in Dubai can be the best choice if you want to work in any of the sectors above but don't want a 9–5 job.

  • Furthermore, you can charge far less for your services because a freelance visa in Dubai is inexpensive.

  • Since there is no need for office space and setup costs are significantly lower, more freelancers can enter the market.

  • You can work as a self-dependent contractor for companies throughout the UAE and gain access to the business center of the free zone if you have a freelance visa and permit in Dubai.

  • If you have a freelancing visa, you can even sponsor family members to move in and reside in an apartment or villa in Dubai. But remember that you are not permitted to support employees with your current visa or freelance authorization.

Now let us understand who can Freelance in the UAE.

For whom is Freelancing useful?

To begin with, there are just two job lines in which you can freelance: education and media-related fields. So you're in good shape if you're an actor, screenwriter, journalist, publicist, education adviser, researcher, eLearning advisor, or involved with those industries.

UAE citizens, residents, and non-residents can apply for freelance licenses in the UAE as of November 2020, according to the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED). The change intends to increase job prospects in the UAE and diversify the capital's economic sector. Freelancers in Abu Dhabi can now operate in 48 different sorts of businesses thanks to the new license laws. Previously, the licenses were only available to UAE citizens.

The Freelancer Visa allows firms to draw into the local market's knowledge and skills while allowing employees to work remotely from approved areas. Applicants cannot rent office space and can apply for resident visas for themselves and their families.

Possibility of obtaining legal residency and working as a freelancer in Dubai

It's no secret that Dubai is a world leader in wages and business income, which is why so many people are considering coming here. The country's migration policy states that foreigners cannot claim citizenship. Still, they can quickly obtain a residency permit/visa, which provides them nearly the same rights as citizens. 

There are six significant ways to get residency in Dubai:

Working in Dubai

When applying for a job in Dubai, you can apply for a working resident permission.

Study in Dubai

When you enroll at the International University of Dubai, you can apply for a student residence permit.

Freelancer in Dubai

After applying for a freelancer license in Dubai, you can obtain a residency permission/visa.


If you invest in Dubai, you can create your firm and obtain a residency permit.

Family residence permits in Dubai.

If you have a freelancer license in Dubai or are a local investor, you can apply for a family residence permission.

Purchasing a home in Dubai

You will also receive a residency permit when you purchase a home for more than AED 1 million.

Freelance Visa Requirements in the UAE

Here are the critical points regarding the requirements for a freelance visa in the United Arab Emirates (UAE):

  • Profession and Skills: Freelancers must possess specific skills or work in certain occupations that align with the UAE's freelance visa categories. These can vary from media, technology, art, design, education, consulting, etc.

  • Experience and Portfolio: Demonstrating a proven track record or portfolio in your field of expertise is often required. This could be through previous work experience, projects, or a portfolio showcasing your skills.

  • Financial Requirements: Having a certain income or funds to support yourself while freelancing in the UAE might be necessary. Different emirates or free zones may have varying financial criteria.

  • Visa Sponsorship or Free Zone Registration: Depending on the emirate, you may need sponsorship from a company or a free zone registration. Free zones like Dubai Media City, Dubai Internet City, etc., often offer freelance permits.

  • Legal Requirements and Documentation: This includes a valid passport, visa application forms, health insurance, background checks, and other legal documents per the UAE government's regulations.

  • Residency Criteria: Meeting residency requirements, such as having a valid residency visa or applying for one, is often necessary for obtaining a freelance visa.

How can you apply for a Freelancing Visa and permit in Dubai?

Getting Freelance permission and a freelance visa in Dubai is now easy, with only a few steps. You must first register as a freelancer in the Emirates and get freelance permission or a license to be eligible for a freelance visa in Dubai. Take the actions listed below to obtain yours swiftly:

Online Application To Obtain Permit

Dhanguard's official website is a safe and secure place to apply for a freelance permit in the UAE. Select the Apply button, complete the application form, and submit the relevant papers.

Relevant documents required for a Dubai Freelance permit-

The following are some of the paperwork required to apply for a freelance permit in Dubai:

  • Resume/CV

  • Photograph taken recently

  • a copy of your passport and visa (valid for at least eight months)

  • Letter of recommendation from a bank

  • Your UAE sponsor's NOC of approval

Please note that if you are applying to work in the education sector, you must present proof of academic qualifications, which must be certified by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the UAE Consulate in your home country. If you're applying for a job in the media, you'll also need to provide a portfolio or a sample of your work. You can only specify one activity when applying for a permit in the education or technology sectors.

If you are on their visa, You will require a No-Objection Certificate from your spouse or parent before applying for the permit. You'll also need an NOC from your employer if you're employed full-time in Dubai and your firm is sponsoring your visa. Keep in mind that the NOC is optional for the renewal of your Dubai freelance work visa.

Proceed With Application

You will receive an email after your online application has been approved, which could take up to 10 to 15 days. Subsequently, you must physically sign the documents and pay the costs in a business centre in Dubai Knowledge Park, Dubai Media City, or Dubai Internet City. You will then receive an email including your freelance permit for Dubai.

Applying For a Visa In Dubai

After you receive your freelance permit, you will also have access to TECOMs business service portal, AXS, which was developed in collaboration with the Dubai Development Authority (DDA) and gives you access to several corporate and governmental services. Using this portal, you can first apply (at a cost) for an establishment card. Once you have your establishment card, you can apply to the Dubai Development Authority (DDA) for a three-year freelance employment visa.

Completing The Visa Process For Residency

After applying for a Dubai freelancer visa, you will get an entry permit in 5 to 7 working days. After you have your entry permit (which is suitable for 60 days from the date of issuance), you will need to finish specific requirements related to your resident visa in Dubai, like taking your medical exam. Your resident visa will be stamped and valid for three years from the date of issuance after these procedures are finished.

Understanding Cost of Freelance Visa

The cost of a freelance visa in the UAE varies based on several factors, including the type of visa, duration, and associated services. At Dhanguard, we provide transparent pricing structures tailored to your specific needs. A Freelance Visa starts at AED 21000*, while the price varies depending on several work criteria.

Things to keep in mind

Dhanguard recommends that you conduct your homework before venturing out on your own.

  • Conduct your investigation before applying to be sure you can acquire a freelance permit for the work you wish to do. Please find out the specific needs because they can vary, and being unprepared can cause delays. You'll also need to arrange your medical insurance, which might be expensive.

  • For many freelancers, payment is also a source of frustration. Things can be tight and unpleasant when you don't have a regular wage. Especially when you aren't usually, if ever, paid on time. Money can be challenging, and some advise only doing work once the bills are paid.

Why Choose Dhanguard?

Obtaining a freelancer residency visa in Dubai opens up numerous opportunities in one of the world's fastest-expanding economies. You can lawfully live and work in any of the Emirates after receiving a freelancing visa in Dubai; you can bring your family to Dubai and enjoy all the benefits of a safe and prosperous existence.

If you need to familiarize yourself with local law, you may use our company's professional aid to address any concerns with permits, business registration, etc.

  • Expert Guidance: Benefit from our experienced consultants specializing in freelance visa acquisition.

  • Tailored Solutions: We personalize our services to align with your freelance career aspirations.

  • Efficiency: Save time and effort with our streamlined visa application process.

  • Compliance: Ensure adherence to UAE regulations and guidelines throughout the visa acquisition journey.

Ready to Start Your Freelance Journey in Dubai?

Embrace the freelance lifestyle in Dubai with confidence. Dhanguard can help you obtain your freelancing visa in Dubai. The United Arab Emirates is an excellent location for expanding your business. Working with a reliable and respectable organization is essential to obtaining a legal freelance Visa in the United Arab Emirates. One of the UAE's top experts on Dubai company formation is Dhanguard. Freelancers can choose from various visa options and premium business support services provided by Dhanguard. Our advisors will help you select the best free zone, apply for a residency permit, and get your independent contractor license. We can handle the entire process on your behalf and respond to any queries you may have about an employment visa and your Emirates ID. Contact us now to learn more about obtaining a freelancing visa in Dubai.

Frequently Asked Questions

A Freelance Visa in the UAE is a permit allowing individuals to legally work as freelancers in the country without needing a full-time employer. It permits them to offer their services to multiple companies or clients on a contractual basis.

Eligibility criteria may vary, but individuals with specific skill sets or expertise in fields such as media, technology, art, and education are generally eligible. Applicants need to provide evidence of their qualifications and professional experience.

Some benefits include legal permission to work as a freelancer, opening a bank account, obtaining a residency visa, sponsoring family members, and accessing certain government services.

Documents generally include: A valid passport. Passport-sized photos. Proof of relevant qualifications or expertise. A detailed business plan.

A Freelance Visa holder can work for multiple client companies but can only be employed part-time by a single entity

Depending on the visa terms and regulations, a Freelance Visa holder meeting specific criteria may be allowed to sponsor family members.

Yes, in most cases, a Freelance Visa can be renewed upon meeting specific conditions, such as maintaining a valid trade license and fulfilling financial obligations.

Yes, Freelance Visa holders can work remotely for clients outside the UAE without restrictions.