Golden Visa UAE: Ultimate Guide For 2023

Golden Visa UAE

Welcome to your complete guide on the esteemed Golden Visa UAE. This game-changing initiative has shaken up the residency landscape in the United Arab Emirates and we are here to provide you with everything you need to know about this thrilling opportunity. Our ultimate guide explores every aspect, from inception, benefits, eligibility criteria, and application process. Whether you are an investor or an entrepreneur seeking to leave your mark on one of the world’s most vibrant economies, or someone who is captivated by the prospect of acquiring long-term residency in this lively region, we have got you covered. So, let us dive into every detail of this exciting programme.

Discover the Key Benefits of the UAE Golden Visa

The UAE is globally recognized for its luxurious lifestyle, modern infrastructure, and thriving business environment. It also boasts a diverse expat population that contributes significantly to its growth and vibrancy. As a result, many seek both short-term work opportunities and long-term residence options within the seven emirates, particularly in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

So how do you choose which option is best for you? One such option is the Golden Visa UAE, an innovative residency-by-investment programme launched in May 2019. This initiative is designed to attract top-tier talent in fields such as entrepreneurship, investment, research and development (R&D), arts and culture, and more. Eligible candidates are granted access to long-term visas lasting up to 10 years at a time, with multiple extensions possible.

But what sets this visa apart from traditional residence permits in other locations? And why has it garnered so much interest worldwide since its inception? To answer these questions (and more), let us explore some key aspects that make the Golden Visa UAE a better option than other options available.

A Comprehensive Overview of the Golden Visa UAE

You may be wondering about the nature of the Golden Visa UAE. In essence, this long-term residency permit enables investors, entrepreneurs, and other qualifying individuals to reside, work, and invest in the UAE without any constraints. It removes the necessity for sponsorship by an employer or national partner, which is typically associated with conventional visas.

By providing extended residency rights to these highly sought-after professionals and their families, this visa not only enhances their sense of security but also contributes to the country’s social and economic development. Also, it builds upon several other reforms introduced by the government in recent years, such as allowing 100% foreign ownership of companies within specific sectors, thus making the UAE an even more appealing destination for global talent.

Why the Golden Visa UAE Is a Game-Changer in the Residency Landscape

The Golden Visa UAE has undeniably revolutionized the residency landscape in Middle Eastern countries since its introduction. In contrast to traditional visas, which typically necessitate periodic renewal every two or three years accompanied by extensive paperwork, this distinctive offering ensures hassle-free extensions of up to 10 years at a time. Consequently, this fosters increased stability for expats seeking to establish their foothold in the region.

In addition, the versatility of the Golden Visa extends beyond its duration. Eligible candidates may select from a range of categories according to their profession or investment preferences while benefiting from unrestricted access to first-rate facilities available across all seven emirates. So, read on to find out how each category is specifically designed to cater to individual applicants as a tailor-made option is available for everyone.

Determining Your Eligibility: Who Can Apply for the Golden Visa UAE?

One of the most crucial aspects of applying for a Golden Visa UAE is understanding whether you qualify or not. The programme has been designed to cater to various profiles and professions, ensuring that there’s an opportunity for everyone, especially those who can contribute significantly towards the country’s growth and development. In this section, we will explore each eligibility category in greater detail:

Stock Photo UAE Flag With Blue Sky Background

Attracting Investors with Lucrative Options

The UAE government seeks to attract high-net-worth investors by offering them two primary investment avenues:

Real Estate Investment

Investors willing to invest at least AED 2 million (approx. USD $545,000) into real estate within the country are eligible for a 10-year Golden Visa.

This option provides investors with an excellent opportunity to enter one of the region’s most thriving property markets while enjoying simultaneous long-term residency benefits.

However, it’s essential to note that these investments must be held on an ownership basis and devoid of any loans or mortgages; they should also remain within your possession as long as your visa remains valid.

Public Investments

Individuals investing in public-sector projects such as infrastructure development or making minimum deposits worth AED 2 million (approx. USD $545,000) into local banks can also apply under this category.

These options widen investor horizons by allowing them access not only to private assets but also potential gains from public ventures, further fueling their interest in securing a golden ticket into the UAE market.

Fostering Entrepreneurial Growth

Entrepreneurs establishing a company within the UAE with a capital of no less than AED 2 million, or partnering in an existing company with a financial contribution of no less than AED 2 million will be eligible for a Golden Visa within the UAE. Additionally, business owners who own an established business that pays the required government taxes equaling no less than AED 250,000 annually are eligible for the Golden Visa.

This opens up new avenues for business owners to succeed in the UAE’s competitive landscape while contributing significantly towards its rapidly evolving economy.

Recognizing and Rewarding Talent Across Disciplines

The Golden Visa program acknowledges that outstanding talent can emerge from various fields. Therefore, it offers residency options catering to unique profiles such as:


Researchers with significant contributions across disciplines like space exploration or biotechnology can apply under this category, provided their work is internationally recognized or endorsed by relevant local institutions.


Artists, authors, and other creatives who have achieved international acclaim for their work may also be considered under this category, allowing them access to the UAE’s thriving creative scene while enjoying long-term residency benefits.


Inventors holding patents with high-value investments (approved by the Ministry of Economy) can further explore innovation opportunities within this dynamic nation through an extended residency permit.

Empowering Students and Academics

Exceptional students scoring above 95% in secondary education exams or maintaining a GPA of at least 3.8 throughout their university studies qualify for five-year visas alongside their families, ensuring stability during these crucial years. Similarly, academics specializing in areas deemed vital by national authorities become eligible too, providing an opportunity for collaboration between leading experts worldwide.

Supporting Medical Professionals and Engineers

The significance of healthcare advancements and infrastructural development is recognized within any society. Included in the eligibility list are medical professionals, doctors (for example), and engineers specializing in computer science, artificial intelligence, electronics, big data, epidemiology, virology, and pharmacy. This grants them access not only to cutting-edge facilities but also to potential collaborations with esteemed practitioners across various sectors.

Stock Photo Medical Professionals Using Visa To Work Overseas


Master the Golden Visa Application Process

Securing your Golden Visa UAE requires a thorough understanding of the application process. This section will help you navigate each step, from preparing essential documents to submitting your completed application and understanding the fees associated with this prestigious visa.

Preparing the Essential Documents for a Seamless Application

Before starting your application, ensure that you have all required documents ready to avoid delays or complications during submission. These typically include:

1. A valid passport with at least six months remaining validity

2. Passport-size photographs

3. Proof of investment (such as property deeds or share certificates)

4. Evidence of business ownership or entrepreneurial endeavors (if applicable)

5. Certificates/endorsements showcasing achievements across various fields (for talent-based categories)

6. Academic transcripts (for students and academics)

Remember to obtain official translations for any non-English document and get them attested by relevant authorities as needed.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Securing Your Golden Visa

Once you have gathered all of the necessary documentation, follow these steps to apply for your UAE Golden Visa:

Online Application

Begin by visiting the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship website where you can initiate your online visa application process through their eChannels portal.

Just ensure you fill out the form accurately. You will need to provide personal information such as name, contact details and nationality along with specifics pertaining to chosen eligibility criteria like investments made/business ownership/talent endorsements, etc. These may vary based on the previously listed categories.

Submission of Documents

After completing the online form, submit scanned copies of supporting documents mentioned previously, ensuring they meet stipulated guidelines concerning size/clarity so as to not cause unnecessary delays during the evaluation stage later on. You may be asked to provide additional information/documents if deemed necessary by an assessor working on your file. Hence, it’s crucial to maintain open communication throughout the entire procedure to stay updated on progress made.

Approval and Issuance of Visa

Once your application has been reviewed and approved by relevant authorities, you will be notified regarding the outcome. Upon successful completion, your Golden Visa will be issued, granting you access to long-term residency within the UAE.

It’s essential to note that although every effort is made to ensure a smooth assessment process, certain applications may take longer than others due to factors beyond control, such as individual case complexities or high influx during peak seasons; therefore, it’s recommended to exercise patience and regularly track your status through provided online channels.

Understanding Fees and Charges: Invest in Your Future

The cost associated with obtaining a Golden Visa UAE varies depending on multiple aspects. These can include the chosen category (investment/entrepreneurial/talent-based), duration (5-year or 10-year visa), and the number of dependents included alongside the primary applicant, among other factors.

Typically, fees range from AED 300-AED 1,500 for medical tests/authentication services. Whereas visa issuance itself can set applicants back anywhere between AED 2,000-AED 15,000. This excludes additional charges such as mandatory health insurance/local sponsorships (if required based on specific circumstances surrounding each case file submitted for review under program guidelines established by federal government entities overseeing implementation across the seven emirates).

Remember that investing in this golden visa option not only secures long-lasting residency rights but also opens doors to lucrative opportunities spanning diverse sectors. So, view these expenses as stepping stones en route to a bigger goal ahead!

Unlock Endless Benefits with the UAE Golden Visa

The Golden Visa UAE offers a large variety of benefits that transform your experience while living and working in this dynamic nation. From unparalleled residency privileges to seizing business opportunities, accessing world-class education and healthcare facilities, reaping rewards from a tax-friendly environment, and enhancing travel experiences, let’s delve deeper into how securing this Golden Visa can elevate your lifestyle:

Stock Photo Of Dubai UAE Where You Might Require A Visa To Live

Enjoy Unparalleled Residency Privileges

With the Golden Visa UAE, you gain long-term residence rights for up to 10 years at a time without the need for an employer or national sponsorship, providing you with greater security and stability throughout your stay. Additionally, eligibility extends beyond just investors/entrepreneurs/talent; their families (spouse and children) are also included under its coverage, creating an ideal setting for raising future generations within this multicultural landscape.

Seize Business Opportunities in a Thriving Economy

The UAE’s robust economy presents boundless potential for entrepreneurs seeking new ventures or investors looking to expand their portfolios. The country is known as one of the world’s most attractive investment hubs. This is due to its strategic location connecting East-West trade routes and innovative governmental policies, such as 100% foreign company ownership reforms across various sectors, making it an essential destination for every global entrepreneur/investor.

Access World-Class Education and Healthcare for the Whole Family

Families residing under the Golden Visa UAE umbrella enjoy access to top-tier educational institutions and state-of-the-art healthcare facilities. These amenities ensure not only exceptional learning environments but also peace of mind when it comes to health concerns, guaranteeing individuals possess the resources needed to maintain optimum standards while pursuing their respective passions and goals within the region.

Reap the Rewards of a Tax-Friendly Environment

One significant advantage associated with residing in the UAE lies within its tax-friendly framework – offering zero income/corporate tax rates for residents alongside minimal indirect taxes like Value Added Tax (VAT) levied upon goods/services consumed. This allows individuals to retain higher percentages of their incomes and invest them back into other ventures, fueling further growth and development within the nation’s socio-economic fabric.

Enhance Your Travel and Mobility Experience

The Golden Visa UAE not only bolsters your reputation as a world citizen but also enhances your travel experience. With visa-free access or simplified visa procedures when visiting over 100 countries, you can easily explore new destinations without worrying about lengthy bureaucratic processes. These will make your international trips more enjoyable than ever before!

Comparison with Other Countries’ Visa Programs

The Golden Visa UAE is not the only residency-by-investment program available worldwide. Several countries, particularly in Europe, offer their versions of a “Golden Visa,” each with its unique features and benefits. In this section, we will compare the UAE’s offering to other popular programs from Portugal, Spain, Greece, and Malta.


Portugal’s Residence Permit Program offers non-EU citizens long-term residence permits through various investment options such as property investment (minimum €500k), capital transfer (€1 million), or job creation (10 new jobs). Unlike the UAE program that grants up to 10-year visas at once without any restrictions on nationality or need for physical presence in the country, Portuguese visa holders are required to spend seven days per year during their first renewal period.


Spain’s Golden Visa program requires an initial minimum real estate investment of €500k or more, depending on different categories like business projects and capital transfers. The Spanish visa allows five years of temporary residence before applying for permanent residency, unlike the longer validity offered by the UAE immediately upon approval. However, applicants must reside in Spain for at least six months annually to maintain eligibility.


Greece’s Visa program requires a minimum real estate investment of €250k, which is significantly lower than most other European counterparts and similar Arabic offerings like the UAE’s option. However, while Greek visas grant 5-year renewable residencies, they do not lead directly toward citizenship status unless specific criteria are met over prolonged periods.


Malta’s Residency by Investment program provides multiple routes towards securing Maltese passports or long-lasting residence rights. These are based on both financial contributions made to national development funds and fixed investments in residential properties situated island-wide. This differs significantly from the UAE-based initiatives where the focus remains primarily geared toward attracting talent and investors across various fields whose expertise contributes to overall societal growth and local development.

While each country’s visa programs offer their own advantages and requirements, the UAE boasts an unparalleled range of benefits. Things such as longer visa validity periods (up to 10 years), no restrictions on nationality or physical presence, and a tax-friendly environment alongside a thriving economy. This makes it a very compelling option for discerning global citizens seeking long-lasting residency opportunities within booming markets spanning the Middle Eastern region collectively!

Stock Photo Of Dubai UAE Where You Might Require A Visa To Live

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, the Golden Visa UAE is a game-changing initiative that has transformed the ability to reside in the United Arab Emirates. This comprehensive guide has provided an in-depth understanding of the program as well as every other aspect involved in this process. The Golden Visa UAE offers unparalleled access to long-term visas lasting up to 10 years at a time with multiple extensions possible, making it a unique and attractive option for investors, entrepreneurs, and other eligible individuals.

Frequently Asked Questions

Navigating the world of Golden Visas can sometimes be confusing, and many questions may arise as you explore this opportunity. Below are answers to some frequently asked questions regarding family inclusion, minimum investment requirements, and application process duration.

Can I include family members in my Golden Visa application?

Yes! The Golden Visa UAE allows eligible applicants to include their immediate family members (spouse and children) within a single application. This means that your spouse and dependent children will also benefit from long-term residency rights alongside yourself, creating an ideal setting for raising future generations within the vibrant multicultural landscape of the UAE.

What is the minimum real estate investment required for the UAE Golden Visa?

The minimum investment requirement varies depending on which category suits your preferences best.

For instance:

10 Year Visa

  • Real estate investments require at least AED 2 million (approx. USD $545,000)

Keep in mind that this figure serves as a baseline threshold; higher amounts may apply depending on specific circumstances surrounding each case file submitted under program guidelines.

How long does the application process take for a Golden Visa UAE?

While every effort is made to ensure a smooth assessment process across all applications submitted under various categories encompassing the UAE’s Golden Visa initiative, certain factors beyond control such as individual case complexities or high influx during peak seasons might cause delays.

Typically, processing times range from four weeks up to several months – although it’s essential to note that each case is unique, and some applications may take longer than others. It’s recommended to exercise patience and maintain open communication with relevant authorities throughout the entire procedure to stay updated on your application’s progress.


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Rihab Saad

Managing Director
Next Generation Equity

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