The United Arab Emirates, the most preferred destination even during the pandemic, continues to stride in becoming an ideal destination for work, business, entrepreneurship, and the best talents by introducing a restructured visa system known as the Advance Visa System. The new reforms went into effect in October 2022, introducing new types of visas, entry permits, and residence permits, as well as expanding the Golden and Green Visa categories, making them more accessible and flexible to visitors worldwide.
The new UAE visa system aims at strengthening the UAE’s position as an ideal destination to live and invest, with the implementation of around ten types of visas, residence permits, and entry permits by the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs, and Port Security (ICP) being one of the largest residency and entry permit reforms in the United Arab Emirates. This was successful in boosting the economy and community by drawing foreign nationals for work, leisure, and other purposes. It encouraged the competitiveness of the job market and fostered a high sense of stability among UAE residents and their families.
Since then, the UAE has stood up in several media reports stating the new changes, including the UAE visit visa extension, an increase in the cost of visa fees, and many others. The new rules for the UAE visit visa came into effect on Tuesday, December 13, 2022.
Here are six significant visit visa changes that you need to know.
No visit visa extensions from within the country
As per the new visit visa rules, visit visa holders do not have the option to modify or extend their visas beyond the given visa period with the United Arab Emirates. Visitors who want to continue their stay in the country must exit the UAE and re-enter on a new UAE visit visa.
Speaking to the media, Afi Ahmed, the Managing Director of Smart Travel, said, “Visitors have the option of extending their visas for one month at a cost.” “After that, they must exit the country either through air or land and can re-enter.”
The visit visa holders needed to exit the country once theirs expired and re-enter with a new visit visa to extend their stay permits in the country, but the rules were changed during the COVID lockdowns. During the pandemic, travelling became difficult, and to ease the situation, the UAE changed the requirements on humanitarian grounds.
“Today the Immigration Department informed us that the extension of the visit visa without exiting the country has been stopped.” “It was usually an entry visa for within the country, so people do not need to leave the UAE,” a travel agent in Dubai reported during the COVID outbreak.
As of now, hundreds of people on tourist visas are availing of same-day UAE or Dubai visit visa status change facilities offered by several agents in Dubai.
The rise in the fee
The fee for issuing Emirates IDS and the cost for UAE visa increased. As confirmed by a customer care agent at the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs, and Ports Security (ICP), the fee applies to all types of UAE and Dubai visas, including 30- and 60-day tourist visas and residence visas, and has now increased by AED 100.
“There are additional fees for all the services on the ICP regarding the new updates of AED 100 for each service,” said an ICP agent.
The cost of an Emirates ID (depending upon the number of years renewed) has gone up from AED 270 to AED 370, and the cost of a one-month visit visa is now AED 270 instead of AED 370.
Five-year multiple entry visa
One of the most significant changes in the new UAE visa rules is that, with the five-year multiple-entry visa, visitors can enter the United Arab Emirates multiple times without the requirement of a sponsor or a host and remain in the country for 90 days during each visit. This also includes a 90-day visa extension with an additional 90-day stay.
A five-year multiple-entry visa enables families outside the country to explore and spend more time with their loved ones in the UAE. Visitors applying for a multiple entry visa must provide additional documents, including bank statements for the last six months with a minimum balance of $4000 or its equivalent in other foreign currencies, proof of accommodation, flight tickets, UAE health insurance, and others.
Fine for overstaying in the UAE
Overstaying visitors must not only pay the overstay fines but also obtain an out pass or leave permit at an additional cost before leaving the country.
Dubai visitors to pay overstaying fine-“This is applicable to visitors who are exiting through Dubai.” “The out pass is not required by visitors you are leaving from other emirates,” said a spokesperson for Deira travels.
60-day visas recommenced
The 60-day Dubai visas were resumed after the recent reforms. As of now, visitors can apply for 30-day visit visas and 60-day visit visas, issued for those wanting to visit the United Arab Emirates.
Issuance of an entry permit to visit relatives or friends
The current amendment states that a visitor can apply for such a permit if he or she is a relative or friend of a UAE resident or citizen, and this process does not require them to go through a travel agency.
The UAE’s implementation of new visa rules has had a significant impact, and these mainly focus on the development of the country.