Requirements for Freelance Visas in United Arab Emirates

Residents moving to Dubai will find that when it comes to working in the emirate, whether it’s setting up their own company or working as a freelancer, there is great versatility. Initiatives have been introduced to make it simpler and cheaper for freelancers to work in Dubai with the the popularity of the ‘gig economy’. One such project, the TECOM Group’s GoFreelance kit, in collaboration with the Dubai Creative Clusters Authority, enables freelancers in the media, technology and education sectors to easily apply for a visa and permit! Today, MyBayut explains how, if you intend to work in the media or education, you can apply for a freelance visa in Dubai.


The Dubai Freelance Permit is a license provided by the TECOM Group that allows you to operate as an independent contractor and is renewable on an annual basis. For those on their spouse’s or parent’s visa, the freelancer permit is suitable and requires only a license to work as a freelancer. For those who are not supported by their parents or partners, however, they can also apply for a Dubai freelance visa, which is a residence permit that allows the person to live and work in the Emirates and can be renewed every three years. 

Who Should Apply for Dubai’s FREELANCE PERMIT and/or FREELANCE VISA?

In Dubai, there are different sectors for which you can achieve freelancer eligibility: Education, Media, Tech. You are eligible to apply for a freelance visa in Dubai if you are pursuing careers such as acting, screenwriting, journalism, advertising, training, education counselor, client service or web creation. On the GoFreelance website, you can find a full list of freelance activities that you are eligible to carry out with this visa.

Please note that if you work in the tech sector, Dubai Media City for the media sector, and Dubai Knowledge Park for the education sector, Dubai Internet City will grant your freelance license. 

How to Apply for FREELANCER PERMIT & VISA in Dubai?

It is now an easy procedure that needs only a few steps to apply for a GoFreelance permit and a freelance visa in Dubai. You will initially need to apply for a freelance permit or license to register as a freelancer in the Emirates in order to obtain a freelance visa in Dubai.

1. Apply for Online Permit

You can apply via the GoFreelance website for a freelance permit in the UAE. Select the Go Apply option and complete the application form and submit the requested documents.

Some of the documents needed to apply for Dubai’s freelance permit include:

  • CV/Resume
  • New Photograph
  • Passport and Copy of Visa (valid for at least 8 months)
  • Letter of Bank Reference
  • NOC from your sponsor in the UAE

Please note that if you apply to the education sector, you will be expected to submit proof of academic qualifications, which must be accredited in your country of origin by either the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the UAE Consulate.

2. No-Objection Letter From Sponsor/Employer

You would need a No-Objection Certificate from them before applying for the permit if you are on your spouse’s or parent’s visa. Similarly, you would require a NOC from your employer if you are working full-time in Dubai and your business supports your visa. Know, you do not need the NOC to renew your freelance work permit in Dubai.

3. Follow up on the Application

You will be informed by email after you have submitted your application online when it has been accepted, which can take up to 10-15 days. After this, you will need to visit the Dubai Information Park, Dubai Media City or Dubai Internet City business center, where you will need to sign the documents directly and pay the fees. You will obtain your freelance permit via email in Dubai afterwards.

4. Apply for the Freelance Visa

You will also gain access to TECOM’s business service portal, known as AXS, launched in collaboration with the Dubai Development Authority (DDA), once you have obtained your freelance permit, which enables you to use a variety of government or corporate services. You may first apply for the establishment pass, which will carry an extra cost, via this website. You can then apply for a freelance work visa under the Dubai Development Authority (DDA) after you have obtained your settlement passport, which is valid for three years.

5. Complete the Residency Visa Process

You will obtain an entry permit within 5 to 7 working days once you have submitted your application for a freelance visa to Dubai. You will be expected to complete certain residency visa procedures in Dubai, such as your medical examination, once you obtain the entry permit (valid for 60 days from the date of issue). Your immigration visa will be stamped when these procedures are complete and will be valid for three years from the date of issue.

Freelance Visa Dubai Costs

There are separate costs for the freelance permit, establishment card and freelance visa.

  • Freelance permit (valid for 1 year): AED 7,500
  • Establishment card (valid for 1 year): AED 2,000

If you are applying for the freelance employment visa in Dubai (valid for three years) within the UAE:

  • AED 4,960 (Normal)
  • AED 6,340 (Express)

If you are applying for the freelance employment visa in Dubai (valid for three years) outside the UAE:

  • AED 3,330 (Normal)
  • AED 3,900 (Express)

Please note that the above cost for the freelance employment visa includes charges for your medical test, visa stamping, and Emirates ID.