Living in the UAE is an attractive prospect for many, thanks to its diverse expatriate community, drawing the interests of people from all over the world to work and settle in this prosperous country. The expat community in UAE keeps growing annually as job seekers and business travellers continue to fly in from all over the world, made easy by the seamless booking process facilitated by airlines and OTAs such as Wego.
While the country witnesses millions of business and leisure travellers every year, some individuals may wish to settle here due to the range of benefits they can access by being residents of the Land of Seven Emirates. Here is a detailed list of all the new residential benefits expats in the UAE can access.
UAE is one of the world’s most leading expat destinations, thanks to its high income, low tax policy, exciting global career opportunities and outreach, and many more exciting benefits of being a UAE resident. Becoming a UAE resident means you will have to procure a residence visa first. But once you are a resident, being a legitimate resident in the UAE will entitle you to various perks.
While you can easily book hotels with Wego during your stay in the UAE, with proper residency, you can buy property and housing and invest in real estate in the Emirates. Although the rules for owning property by expatriates vary across different Emirates, foreign ownership is possible in designated cities and zones across the country. In addition, you will be granted access to government health services and health insurance and register your children in government and private schools, as expat students can attend schools in the UAE and are charged tuition fees as per the applied regulations.
In order to facilitate expatriates, the UAE Cabinet has recently announced several beneficial amendments. According to the latest updates, after residence permits are cancelled or expired, the grace period now extends up to 6 months. Expats who do not have residency visas but are holders of the five-year Green Visa for investors can now bring their family for 5 years to the UAE, compared to the earlier stipulated time of 2 years.
The thriving business culture and economy make the UAE a hotspot for new investments with outstanding returns and benefits in the long run. Naturally, this draws the interests of several expats, business owners and investors to work and invest in the UAE. As residents, expats can plan, start and run businesses on the mainland and in the country’s free zones. The permits and guidelines for most business-related activities are readily available on the government’s portal.
Along with several added living perks, expat residents can:
- Open a bank account
- Get a car loan (apply for a car loan from their banks or any registered finance company in the UAE)
- Get a personal loan (apply for a personal loan)
- Access protection of insolvent natural persons (creating favourable conditions for individuals facing financial difficulties)
In order to do so, expatriate residents may be required to submit the necessary documents according to their needs, such as a passport copy, work or residence visa copy, Emirates ID, a salary letter or a letter of NOC (No Objection) from the employer or sponsor.
Along with the passport, a visa is an important document that is needed while travelling abroad, and the process of procuring one can be time-consuming and quite tedious. However, UAE residents are entitled to travel visa-free to over 130 destinations worldwide, such as several European and Middle Eastern countries. Please note that the maximum stay period may vary anywhere from 30 to 90 days, according to the country you are visiting. In most cases, you won’t be permitted to conduct business and participate in other activities, other than visiting the country.
The UAE’s highly coveted 10-year Golden Visa, which comes with a wide range of benefits and perks, can be obtained by expatriates in the Emirates as long as they satisfy the eligibility and requirements for procuring one. Golden Visas are currently available to the following categories of people (under certain conditions):
- Real estate investors
- Talented individuals in the field of arts, sports, innovation, medicine, law and others
- Scientists and researchers
- Skilled workers
- Humanitarian pioneers