DUBAI and its new Tourist Visa rules

Below is the new Visa rule that Dubai is starting to implement. As expected a lot of Dubai Filipino workers got irritated. I really don’t have any idea what the Government is aiming to settle with this kind of conclusion. But whatever it is, I hope it is still for the betterment of all expats living in Dubai. Otherwise, it is not worth staying here anymore compared to what it is being conceptualized years back. Let’s see. Things can still change few months from now coz’ I am pretty sure that the Immigration Department will be bombarded with thousand of calls inquiring all about these changes.

Dubai: People of all nationalities can now enter the UAE on a tourist visa under new rules that come into effect from next week, a senior official from the Interior Ministry said on Wednesday.

Earlier, nationals from 79 countries in the subcontinent, Middle East and elsewhere were not eligible for tourist visas and could come to the UAE only on a visit visa. “The new rules will encourage the tourism sector in the country,” said Major General Mohammad Ahmad Al Merri, Director General of Dubai Naturalisation and Residency Department (DNRD).

Al Merri announced the new rules after a meeting with hotel and tourist agency representatives yesterday. He said travel agencies will no longer be allowed to apply for visit visas. “Now these companies will only be allowed to apply for tourist visas,” he said. “This will regulate the business and make the process of people travelling to the UAE easier and smooth, as tourism is a high priority for us.”

Al Merri reiterated that people should apply only through licensed tourism agencies and hotels. Individuals cannot apply for the tourist visas, he added.

Short trips to the Iranian island of Kish, Oman and other neighbouring countries to change visit visas has also been stopped. “People wanting to apply for a new visit visa after the expiry of their visa, must go back to their home countries or distant countries,” he said. However, Al Merri did not elaborate which countries would be considered distant.

“Nobody can now go on these visa runs. We don’t want people to get stuck [on these trips],” said Al Merri. A visit visa will also not be converted to a work visa, he said. “Applicants will have to go back to their home country and wait for the work visa, which will be authorised by the Ministry of Labour,” he said.

No free entry

The new visa rules will come into force from July 29 and all typing centres will get the software for the new online forms and fee payments by July 28, the official said. He added that those who apply before July 29 will be dealt with on the old system.

People applying for any visa will have to pay a refundable deposit of Dh1,000. Separate visas will be issued for various purposes such as medical treatment or studies. “We will know why each person is coming here for and the sponsor will be responsible for the visitor. This will address the issue of illegal overstayers,” Al Merri said.

As per the new rules, 34 nationalities who earlier got a free visit visa for 60 days upon arrival in the UAE will now have to pay Dh100 for a 30-day visa.


–Tourist visas can only be applied for by a licensed hotel or a tourism agency.

–Residents can apply for a visa for their spouse or blood relative.

–Expatriates will no longer be allowed to sponsor friends, and all visitors should have a health insurance cover.

–Medical treatment visas can only be applied through licensed hospitals and clinics.

–Education visas can only be applied by a licensed educational institution.

–Exhibition and conference visas can only be applied for by the organisers.

Do you think the new rule will prove beneficial?



  1. bevz said,

    March 21, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    hi! just want to ask bcoz my (semi gov) company is allowing us to have the vacation leave since we’ve finished the 3 mos probation and my 25 days vacation was already been approved. My question now is this, do the airport immigration will hold me since my ticket is only a one way ticket (this is because it was only a promo ticket)?

    • bevz said,

      March 21, 2010 at 6:25 pm

      i forgot to say, in my vacation trip, i will be going in my home country

  2. Myleen said,

    May 1, 2010 at 8:41 pm

    I was in my country for vacation from April 8 to may 6, on april 23 may company called me here in Philippine saying that i dont need to come back because they will cancel my visa, they dont say what reason and i dont ask as my company is not good and favor for me if they cancel me,instead i told them to let me come back dubai before they cancel my visa as i paid already my ticket.
    My concern is if i get visit visa do i need to exit in my origin for one month because i ask travel agency that from cancelation i need to exit one month not days or weeks before i get new visit visa?
    another question after i finish my first visit visa and i will get new visit visa again do i need to exit again for one month before get new visa?(coz my company not giving NOC im ban for 6month)
    also my company terminated me what benifits i can get from them do i can ask to give me NOC?

  3. November 4, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    well, we always choose very reputable travel agencies when we are travelling abroad ,

  4. December 3, 2010 at 10:11 am

    always choose your travel agency very well, you would not really want to deal with those rip-off travel agents *-,

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