Applications for 5 and 10 Year UAE Residency Visas Now Open |

You Can Now Apply for Long-Term UAE Visas

Applications can now be made for 5-year and 10-year visas for certain expatriates

Posted on

12 March 2019

Last updated on 12 March 2019
by Rebecca Roberts
Apply for long-term UAE visas

Investors, entrepreneurs and specialists can now apply for ten-year UAE visas...

The news came of long-term visas for expatriates in May last year, and it's since been confirmed that the extended 10 year UAE visas would only be given to certain expats. Now, applications are being received by the UAE's residency departments, as confirmed by Dubai's ruler.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai announced that the UAE Cabinet is to begin receiving applications for 5- and 10-year visas for UAE residents - just two months since the very first long-term UAE visas were granted to scientists.

His announcement follows the approval of the regulatory framework for issuance of the extended UAE residency visas by the UAE Cabinet this week.

HH Sheikh Mohammed took to Twitter to share the news; "We [have] adopted the framework of long-term visas for investors, entrepreneurs, innovators and professional talents. The UAE's residency departments will start receiving applications. The UAE will remain a global incubator for talents and a permanent destination for pioneers."

The new UAE visa system will enable expatriate residents to live, work and study in the UAE without the need of a national sponsor, and with 100% ownership of their business on the UAE's mainland.

The visas will be issued for 5 or 10 years, and will be renewed automatically.

These changes to the UAE's visa system will help to increase the chances of attracting investors and competencies to the UAE and thus, boost the country's economic competitiveness globally.

Who qualifies for long-term UAE visas?

Those able to apply for extended UAE visas include investors, entrepreneurs, medical specialists, scientists, researchers and outstanding students – and the reason behind this was to create an attractive environment for future investment in the UAE.


The long-term visas are available to two types of investors in the UAE; five year visas shall be granted to investors who have a property worth AED 5 million or more, and 10 year visas shall be given to investors making a public investment.


Entrepreneurs in the UAE who have a previous project of AED 500,000 minimum will be eligible for a 5-year visa. Those that have an accredited business incubator approval in the UAE will also be able to apply for a 5 year residency visa.

Science and medical specialists

Doctors, specialists, scientists, investors, researchers and artists can be granted a 10 year residency visa if they meet any one of the following criteria:

  • Expat has a PhD degree in one of 500 top universities
  • Expat has an award or certificate of appreciation in field
  • Expat has contributed to major scientific research in field
  • Expat has published articles or scientific journals in distinguished publications in field
  • Expat is a member in an organization in field with excellent published work
  • Expat has a PhD degree and 10 year professional experience in field
  • Specialists in areas of priority in the UAE
  • Scientists who are accredited by the Emirates Scientists Council
  • Holders of the Mohammed bin Rashid Medal for Scientific Excellence

Outstanding students

Outstanding students with a grade of 95 per cent in secondary school, and a GPA of at least 3.75 upon graduation from university, will be eligible for a five-year visa for them and their family.

More information about the requirements for long-term residence visas in the UAE can be found here.

How to apply for long-term UAE residency visa

There are three ways to apply for your UAE entry permit and residence visa; via the eChannels portal, the website of the GDRFA (full list of each emirate here) or via the mobile apps, like the ICA UAE eChannels or the GDRFA app.

Alternatively, you may visit a typing centre in person to submit an offline visa application or at an Amer centre.