Long-Term Residency in Abu Dhabi: 9 Good Things to Know

January 23, 2023

Living in Abu Dhabi has a lot of advantages in terms of personal development as well as career advancement. If you want to learn the traditions of Emiratis, Abu Dhabi is one of the best places to visit. It is the UAE's capital, where different nationalities reside and mingle. It's a place where people enjoy the nightlife taking place at some of the most luxurious places all around the world.

Career-wise, exciting opportunities await those who want to live in the city. Some of the most in-demand jobs are developers, architects, project managers, registered nurses, technicians, physicians, and more. Working in the city would require a permit from the Ministry of Labor and sponsorship from an employer, so it's not as simple as walking in as an applicant, especially if you're not a resident.

The good news is, people can apply for long-term residency in Abu Dhabi. They will be granted a Golden Visa, which will enable them to live and work in the city or anywhere in the UAE.

Interested in living long-term in Abu Dhabi? Here are nine good things to know about the Golden Visa:

1. Students may be granted a Golden Visa for five or 10 years, depending on their status.

High school students who are toppers of their schools, either public or private, with 95 as their minimum grade, are eligible for five years even without a sponsor. Outstanding university students are eligible for 10 years if their university is rated A or B by the Ministry of Education.

This opportunity for students is hard to ignore because it's a great accomplishment to finish studies in Abu Dhabi. The latest news on the Times Higher Education reveals that Abu Dhabi University tops institutions in the United Arab Emirates and places well in the top 250 universities all around the world.

2. Ten-year validity for people with outstanding specialized talents.

Who is included in this category? If you're an athlete, an executive, a doctor, a scientist, or an inventor, you belong in this category. If you're a specialist in any scientific or engineering field, you also belong in this category, likewise if you hold a doctoral degree.

The requirements would include UAE's Ministry of Health and Prevention's approval letter, Emirates Council of Scientists' recommendation letter, or Ministry of Economy's recommendation letter, depending on the applicant's field.

3. Pioneer aid workers may be granted a 10-year visa, provided they belong to any of these categories:

  • worked for a minimum of five years in regional or international organizations
  • worked for a minimum of five years in civil associations of public interest
  • recipient of appreciation awards from organizations focusing on humanitarian work

4. Five-year validity for entrepreneurs.

If you're an entrepreneur, you may be granted a five-year visa. But not just any business, an economic one that focuses on risk and innovation, to be exact. Abu Dhabi continues to launch campaigns and policies focusing on such projects, so it's only appropriate that your business goes well with its plans for the future.

You should acquire an approval letter from a UAE auditor, an accredited business incubator, and emirate authorities to get the approval for the visa.

5. Investors may be granted five or 10-year visas, depending on their type of investments.

For those with public investments, a 10-year validity without a sponsor, provided they submit a letter from a UAE-accredited investment fund, a valid commercial or industrial license, and a Federal Tax Authority letter. For people with real estate investments, a five-year validity without a sponsor, provided they present documents on the purchase of a property.

6. There are exclusive benefits.

Whether you're an entrepreneur, a skilled worker, or a student, you get to enjoy the benefits of a Golden Visa holder.

Firstly, you get to sponsor other family members and domestic helpers. You get the ability to stay outside the United Arab Emirates for more than six months, which is the usual allotted time to keep the validity of a residency visa. You can renew your residence visa even without a sponsor. And you're issued an entry visa with multiple entries.

7. “Thrive in Abu Dhabi.”

This program was launched to inspire investors as well as global talents to shape their future in the city. This encourages expats to settle down with their families in the city. This program ensures support as well as exciting career paths through the city's various programs and institutions. Funding and incentives are available, as well as research grants.

8. Individual Emirates benefits.

There are other benefits of the Golden Visa according to which emirate you're in. In Abu Dhabi, they're entitled to discounts on banking services, cars, health care and insurance, and selected properties. They get priority booking on newly-released cars, as well as in payment facilities and licensing services. They get special offers on gyms, spas, and dining establishments. Investors are entitled to reduced mortgage rates.

9. Easy application.

With ICP's eServices, the application is easy. Their service is described as providing entry to applicants valid for six months, finalizing the golden residency procedures, and then receiving the visa. On the website, people will need to provide information, they'll learn about fees, and can track their applications.


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Carlos Diaz
I believe in making the impossible possible because there’s no fun in giving up. Travel, design, fashion and current trends in the field of industrial construction are topics that I enjoy writing about.

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