An expat guide on how to legally hire and sponsor domestic workers in Dubai
17 June 2021| Last updated on 24 March 2023
We answer your questions on hiring housemaids, nannies, and other domestic helpers as a Dubai expat.
Hiring a full-time maid or nanny can be a huge lifesaver for many expats. Whether you're busy with your career or family, or just need some extra helping hands around the house, sponsoring a domestic helper in Dubai can help you manage your time more efficiently.
In this expat guide, we will go through the criteria and steps required to sponsor a full-time maid or nanny in Dubai, so you can be sure where to start.
Requirements to hire domestic helpers in Dubai
Wondering what are the requirements to hire a maid in Dubai?
Under the UAE Executive Regulation of Federal law No. 10 of 2017 on Domestic Workers, expatriate residents can hire sponsored home help if they meet one of the following:
- Individuals or families who have a combined monthly income of at least AED 25,000.
- Those who receive permission to sponsor domestic helpers under decisions of the UAE Cabinet.
- Patients in the UAE who have accredited medical coverage, and whose family members have a combined monthly income of at least AED 15,000.
- UAE expats who work as consultants of different specialties, and legal counselors.
- Special cases permitted by a competent minister according to the UAE labour regulations.
Bachelors are not allowed to hire a maid.
Where can you hire a domestic worker from?
Starting March 2021, UAE citizens and expats will have to hire domestic helpers from Tadbeer centres only, in an effort to protect the workers' and employers' rights.
Nasser bin Thani Al Hamli, the Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) announced that they have closed 250 recruitment offices for domestic workers in the UAE. More agency closures will follow in the coming months.
How much does it cost to sponsor a maid or nanny in Dubai?
Costs to hire a full-time maid or nanny yourself
Hiring a maid or nanny in Dubai can be more affordable than you think, even for households on a tight budget. But it's important to note that you or your entire household are legally required to have a combined monthly income of at least AED 25,000.
Here's how much you can expect to spend when hiring and sponsoring a live-in domestic helper in Dubai.
The monthly salary varies and can range from AED 1,500 to AED 5,000. The salary will depend on factors such as experience, responsibilities, references, skills, etc. When deciding a maid's monthly income, you must also comply by her home country's minimum wage laws enforced by her embassy in the UAE.
2. Health insurance
It's a mandatory requirement for all sponsors to provide health insurance cover for the full-time domestic helper.
Depending on which insurance provider and premium you choose, you can expect to pay around AED 5,000 to AED 10,000 annually.
3. Sponsorship fees
As her future legal sponsor in the country, you will need to apply for your maid's UAE residence visa. This will cost you around AED 5,000 to AED 5,500 per year, which is a non-refundable fee.
4. Flight ticket
You must provide an annual return flight ticket to your maid or nanny. The price will vary depending on the destination and airline carrier of choice.
5. Basic living expenses
If the maid will be living with you, as her sponsor you are responsible for her accommodation at your home, food expenses, and other basic amenities. If she will not live with you, then you can expect to pay extra in her salary for her live-out accommodation.
6. Refundable deposit
Depending on the maid's nationality and her embassy's rules, you may be required to pay a refundable security deposit, which can range between AED 3,000 to AED 10,000.
7. Other government expenses
You can also expect to be charged for her medical tests, registration, and Emirates ID, payable to the UAE government.
Costs to hire a full-time maid or nanny through an agency
Prefer to hire a maid through an agency in Dubai? While the process is faster, paying an agency can be slightly more costly.
Here's how much you can expect to pay for a full-time maid in Dubai, via a registered agency.
- One-time agency fees: This varies, and can range between AED 5,000 to AED 15,000. This fee includes the maid's visa, health insurance, medical test, flight tickets, Emirates ID costs, and the agency's finder fee.
- Maid's salary: This will be included in your contract, and is typically between AED 3,000 to AED 5,000 per month.
- Accommodation: Maid agencies in Dubai offer live-in or live-out options. If you opt for a live-out maid, you can expect to be charged additional for her accommodation.
Costs to hire a part-time maid or nanny in Dubai
If you believe that you don't require full-time help around the house and only need the extra hands a few times a week, check out cleaning companies and registered maid agencies in Dubai for part-time maid services.
Since you're not responsible for the maid's stay in the UAE, the hiring process is simple, less time-consuming, and affordable.
Cleaning companies and agencies in Dubai offer a range of part-time services, from cleaning and baby-sitting to dog-walking. Simply book their services online, call their booking number, or book through an app (if they have one).
You can expect to pay between AED 20 to AED 50 per hour. The total costs will vary based on the number of hours/days per week you book her services for, the size of your house for cleaning, and the costs of cleaning supplies.
If you're looking to hire a part-time maid in the afterhours/evening, you might be charged extra.
How to apply for a maid's UAE visa as a sponsor
Ready to hire a maid in Dubai? Follow our step-by-step guide for expat residents.
Who can apply as the maid's sponsor?
A Dubai housemaid's UAE visa can be only be applied for and issued by the head of the family, who is usually the male.
Documents required to sponsor a maid
To apply for your maid's visa, you will need to submit the following documents:
- The visa application form typed through an authorised typing centre in Dubai.
- Passport-sized photos of the sponsor and the maid.
- Passport copies of the sponsor and the maid.
- Sponsor's months bank statement.
- A copy of the sponsor’s UAE labour contract.
- A copy of the sponsor’s health insurance card.
- The sponsor's Salary Certificate.
- The maid’s Medical Fitness Certificate, issued from their country or from within the UAE.
- A copy of the sponsor’s tenancy contract (minimum two-bedroom home)
- An affidavit from the embassy or consulate of non-relationship, if the maid is from the same country.
Where to apply for a maid's visa in Dubai
Apply for an employment permit as the maid's sponsor, which will require an authorised typist (at any authorised typing centre in the UAE) to fill up the employment entry permit form.
To complete the process for sponsoring a maid in Dubai, visit any Tasheel Centre in the UAE, or submit all documents to the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) website.
Then, pay the non-refundable cost of a maid visa in Dubai or stamping fee of AED 5,200.
Pay the refundable deposit of AED 2,000 which will be returned to you once the domestic worker leaves the UAE.
After you receive the approved permit from the GDRFA, you can either send the original or a copy to your maid.
If the maid is not in the UAE:
If you've only given her the permit copy, you will need submit the original at a DNATA Visa Desk at Dubai airport or at a DNRD counter. Once done, you can book tickets for your maid maid to enter the UAE.
You must then...
- Obtain her Medical Fitness Report.
- Register for the maid's Emirates ID.
- Apply for the UAE residence stamp on her passport.
- Receive your Domestic Worker Card as her sponsor.
- Receive the maid's Emirates ID.