Freelancing Visa in the UAE

The modern world is moving at a breakneck pace. Freelancing is a type of labour that is growing increasingly popular. Flexibility, the ability to manage one's own work time and space independently, the ability to act on one's own behalf, independence and freedom in lifestyle choices, the ability to work on a temporary basis, 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 the success is defined by the qualifications, experience, and reputation of freelancers based on customer reviews. 

Given Dubai's fame and potential as a city with good company growth opportunities, ambitious and active foreigners frequently come to the conclusion that they should obtain a license and a freelancer visa and relocate to Dubai, UAE to live and work. In this article, we'll go over the most important points about obtaining this type of document and obtaining a residency visa in Dubai while working as a freelancer.

When it comes to working in Dubai, residents will discover that there is a lot of flexibility, whether they want to start their own business or work as a freelancer. With the rise in popularity of the "gig economy," steps have been put in place to make it easier and less expensive for freelancers to work in Dubai. Thus, this service page will help you in knowing all the intrinsic details about Freelancing Visa in Dubai. So without any further ado, let’s learn!  

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Firstly, you should know who can Freelance?

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

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 also allowing employees to work remotely from approved areas. Applicants do not have to 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 terms of 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 under any circumstances, but they can easily obtain a residency permit / visa, which provides them with nearly the same set of rights as citizens. There are six major ways to obtain 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.


You can create your own firm and obtain a residency permit if you invest in Dubai.

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

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

What is a Freelance Visa and Permit?

In November 2020, the UAE stated that not just UAE nationals, but also UAE citizens, residents, and non-residents, could apply for freelance licenses in the country in order to increase job prospects.

Freelancers can now work and live in the UAE lawfully, bringing their families and dependents with them.

For residents, a freelancer permit is required-

If you're in Dubai on your spouse's or parent's visa, all you need is a freelancer permit to get started. By receiving a permit, full-time working professionals in the UAE can work as freelancers. Your sponsor and/or employer will, however, provide you with a No Objection Certificate (NOC).

For non-residents, a freelancer visa is required-

If you're not already a UAE resident, you'll need to apply for a freelancer visa, which is 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.

What are the benefits of having a Freelancing Visa in Dubai?

In Dubai, having a freelance permit and visa has various advantages.

  • For starters, it gives you the freedom to work for a variety of companies.
  • If you want to work in any of the above-mentioned fields but don't want to work a 9-to-5 job, becoming a freelancer in Dubai may be the ideal option.
  • Furthermore, the low cost of a freelance visa in Dubai allows you to charge much lower rates for your services.
  • Setup expenses are substantially lower, and no office space is necessary, allowing more freelancers to enter the market.
  • A freelance visa and permit in Dubai also permit you to operate as an independent contractor for enterprises throughout the UAE, as well as access to the free zone's business center.
  • You can even sponsor family members to come and live with you in a Dubai apartment or villa for rent if you have a freelance visa. However, keep in mind that your freelance authorization and visa do not allow you to sponsor staff.

How can you apply for a Freelancing Visa & Permit in Dubai?

In Dubai, getting a Freelance permission and a freelance visa is now an easy process with only a few steps. In order to obtain a freelance visa in Dubai, you must first obtain a freelance permit or license and register as a freelancer in the emirate. Follow the below mentioned steps to acquire yours quickly-


Dhanguard’s official website is a safe and secure place where you can apply for a freelance permit in the UAE. Select the Apply button and complete the application form as well as submit the relevant papers.

Relevant documents required for a Dubai Freelance permit-

The following are some of the documents 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 8 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 will be required to 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. When applying for a permit in the education or technology sectors, you can only specify one activity.

* You will require a No-Objection Certificate from your spouse or parent before applying for the permit if you are on their visa. You'll also need a 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 not required for the renewal of your Dubai freelance work visa.


You will be contacted by email after your application has been approved, which might take up to 10-15 days after you submit it online. After that, you'll need to go to a business center in Dubai Knowledge Park, Dubai Media City, or Dubai Internet City to sign the forms and pay the fees in person. After that, you will receive an email with your Dubai freelance permit.


You will also have access to TECOM's business service portal, AXS, which was launched in cooperation with the Dubai Development Authority (DDA) and allows you to access a variety of government and corporate services once you have gotten your freelance permit. You can first apply for an establishment card through this portal, which will incur a fee. After you've gotten your establishment card, you can apply for a three-year freelance employment visa through the Dubai Development Authority (DDA).


Within 5 to 7 working days after submitting your application for a freelancing visa in Dubai, you will receive an entry permit. You will be required to complete specific resident visa formalities in Dubai, such as your medical test, once you have your entry permit (which is valid for 60 days from the date of issue). Your residency visa will be stamped and valid for three years from the date of issue once these formalities are completed.

Cost of Freelance Visa in Dubai

The freelancing permission, establishment card, and freelance visa all have separate charges.

  • AED 7,500 for a one-year freelance permit
  • AED 2,000 for a one-year establishment card

If you want to apply for a three-year freelance job visa in Dubai:

  • AED 4,960 (Normal)
  • AED 6,340 (Express)

If you're looking for a three-year freelance job visa in Dubai from outside the UAE:

  • AED 3,330 (Normal)
  • AED 3,900 (Express)

Why should you choose Dhanguard?

Obtaining a freelancer residency visa in Dubai opens up numerous chances 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 will be able to bring your family to Dubai and enjoy all the benefits of a safe and prosperous existence.

It's worth noting that if you're not familiar with local law, you may take advantage of our company's professional aid in addressing any concerns with permits, business registration, and so on.

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. Find out the specific needs because they can vary, and not being prepared can cause delays. You'll also need to arrange your own 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 difficult to come by, and some people advise not doing work until the bills are paid.

Frequently Asked Questions

In Dubai, this is a form of residency permit. It entitles you to live and work in the country, as well as get resident permits for your family.

In many free zones, freelancing as a self-employed person is permitted. In Dubai, as well as when registering a firm in one of the free zones, you will require a suitable license to function as a stand-alone self-employed professional.

To create a freelancing business, you must first choose a jurisdiction (free zone or mainland), a field of activity, gather a set of documentation, pay a preset price, and obtain a license. After that, you'll be able to work in Dubai.

Residents of Dubai and the other UAE emirates do not have to pay income taxes. The only tax you'll have to pay is the 5% VAT, which you'll have to pay only if your annual income from your activities in the UAE reaches AED 375,000.

The price of a freelancer residence permit varies depending on the county and type of work. It is evident that a solution is less expensive than starting your own business.