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The Ultimate Guide to the United Arab Emirates Golden Visa

Updated 11.06.24 11 minutes read

When it comes to driving its advanced economy forward, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has unique challenges. Its geographical location, small population size, and cutting-edge role in multiple industries require a different approach to engaging with international talent, investors, and entrepreneurs. 

That’s why the UAE government has proactively created a framework to connect the international business community to the boundless opportunities available and facilitate their relocation.

The UAE Golden Visa is a long-term residence visa introduced by the United Arab Emirates to attract and retain talented individuals, investors, and professionals. It aims to enhance the country’s economic growth and innovation by providing a stable and secure living environment for residents. 

The Golden Visa is a great opportunity to access the enormous current success and future potential of this Gulf State. Join us on this guide to discover more the UAE Golden Visa and the basics behind what if offers and how to qualify. 

The information provided here is meant as an outline of the program. See the official website for more information or consult with an immigration professional for legal advice.

What the UAE Golden Visa Does

How the Golden Visa Benefits Successful Applicants

Successful applicants to the UAE Golden Visa program secure the following benefits:

  • Long-term residence. The Golden Visa is granted for 5 or 10 years and is renewable.
  • Stability and Security. Visa holders can live, work, and study in the UAE without the need for a national sponsor.
  • Family Sponsorship. Visa holders can sponsor their family members, including spouses, children, and support staff, for the same duration as their own visa.
  • Streamlined Business Setup. Facilitates the process of starting and managing businesses in the UAE.
  • Multiple Entries. Offers multiple entries and can be applied for while within the UAE.
  • No Need for a National Sponsor. Visa holders can live, work, and study in the UAE without the need for a national sponsor or local employer.
  • Property Ownership. Investors in real estate can own property in the UAE.
  • Career opportunities. Opportunities for career advancement in various industries, particularly for specialized talents and researchers in fields like technology, medicine, and engineering.

UAE Golden Visa

How the Golden Visa Serves the UAE

The Golden Visa advances the interests of the UAE in a number of ways as well:

  • Promotes economic growth. By attracting high-net-worth individuals, investors, and entrepreneurs, the Golden Visa boosts the UAE’s economy through increased investment, business development, and job creation.
  • Innovation and development. Encouraging scientists, researchers, and professionals in specialized fields to reside in the UAE helps to advance technological, scientific, and academic progress, contributing to the country’s development goals.
  • Cultural and creative enrichment. The Golden Visa attracts creative talents in culture, arts, and other creative industries, enriching the UAE’s cultural landscape and promoting its status as a global cultural hub.
  • Talent retention. By offering long-term residency, the Golden Visa provides stability and security to highly skilled individuals, reducing the risk of talent migration and ensuring that their expertise benefits the UAE over the long term.
  • Educational excellence. Encouraging outstanding students and graduates to stay in the UAE supports the development of a knowledgeable and skilled workforce, which is essential for the country’s future growth.
  • Humanitarian efforts. Supporting individuals involved in humanitarian work aligns with the UAE’s commitment to global humanitarian causes and enhances its international reputation.

Eligibility for the UAE Golden Visa

The main eligibility requirements for the UAE Golden Visa include:

  • A background check. All applicants must pass a background check and be free of any criminal record.
  • Proof of health insurance. Applicants must have valid health insurance for themselves and their dependents.
  • Relevant documentation. Detailed documentation proving eligibility, such as degrees, professional licenses, investment records, and business approvals, must be provided.

As a convenient single approach for a wide range of interests who want to participate in the UAE’s economy, the Golden Visa features a range of categories under which to apply, each with separate eligibility criteria:


Real Estate Investors must own property worth at least AED 2 million (approximately $550,000 USD) to qualify. General Investors must have public investments through a deposit, an established company, or a business partnership of at least AED 10 million ($2.75m USD). The invested amount should not be loaned, and the investment should be retained for at least three years.

Extra benefits for Investors: Long-term residence provides stability for managing investments and business operations.


Those seeking to start or expand businesses must own or be a partner in a startup registered in the UAE under the small and medium enterprise (SME) category, with annual revenues of AED 1 million ($275,000 USD) or more. Applicants should also obtain approval for startup ideas from an official business incubator or relevant authority in the UAE.

Extra benefits for Entrepreneurs: Easier access to resources, networking opportunities, and support from business incubators and accelerators.

Specialized Talents and Researchers

  • Scientists – Must be accredited by the Emirates Scientists Council or hold the Mohammed Bin Rashid Medal for Scientific Excellence.
  • Researchers – Must be experts in fields prioritized by the UAE, such as medicine, engineering, technology, and others.
  • Doctors and Medical Professionals – Must be licensed to practice in the UAE and have significant contributions to their field.
  • Creative Individuals in Culture and Art – Must be accredited by the Ministry of Culture and Youth.

Extra benefits for specialized Talents and Researchers: Opportunities to collaborate with leading institutions and contribute to significant projects in various fields.

Outstanding Students and Graduates

  • High-performing students in UAE secondary schools.
  • Outstanding graduates from UAE universities and the best 100 universities worldwide.

Extra benefits for Outstanding Students and Graduates: Enhanced opportunities for further education and career development within the UAE.

Humanitarian Pioneers

Individuals recognized for their humanitarian work, such as members of international and regional organizations, outstanding volunteers, and recipients of humanitarian awards.

Extra benefits for Humanitarian Pioneers: Acknowledgment of their contributions and support for continuing their humanitarian efforts.

Duration of the UAE Golden Visa

The UAE Golden Visa offers a long-term residency of up to 10 years, which is renewable. This length allows skilled professionals, investors, entrepreneurs and outstanding students with the stability they need to fully develop their work in the UAE. The specific duration can vary based on the category under which the visa is granted, but it generally falls under the 5 or 10-year periods.

UAE Golden Visa

The Role of a Business Plan in the UAE Golden Visa Program

While not formally required, immigration experts advise their clients to include a business plan as part of their application package for the UAE Golden Visa program. 

The reason is simple — a professional business plan clearly demonstrates the merits of the applicant’s professional plans while in the UAE and how those activities align with the goals of the visa program. 

A UAE Golden Visa business plan comprehensively explains all the details that are relevant to UAE immigration authorities in professional terms they understand, and at a standard they expect. 

Joorney can provide a compelling UAE Golden Visa business plan that maximizes your chances of getting approved. We’ve written nearly 30,000 business plans to satisfy the requirements of business immigration visa programs around the world. 

Business plans from Joorney are:

  • Tailored to your specific situation and goals. We understand that every applicant’s situation and goals are unique. Therefore, we work closely with each client to create a customized plan that tells their story and maximizes their chances of success.
  • Based on experience in over 180 industries and fields. Our team of writers has experience in nearly every imaginable business sector. This breadth of experience allows us to craft plans specific to each applicant’s industry and field of practice.
  • Comprehensive and detailed. We understand the importance of both presenting a compelling case for your proposed venture and attention to detail in business plans for UAE Golden Visas. Our team of writers and editors thoroughly reviews each plan to ensure that it meets the specific requirements of the visa program.

Look to Joorney to Help Start Your UAE Business Ambitions 

A well-written business plan can make all the difference in a UAE Golden Visa application. It can showcase your project’s innovation and overall value to the economy while demonstrating how it helps to further the goals of the visa program. 

Our team of international, multilingual consultants at Joorney understands the importance of crafting a high-quality business plan that meets the specific requirements of the UAE Golden Visa application process. We want to help you take advantage of this amazing chance to participate in one of the world’s most dynamic and opportunity-rich economies. 

If you’re interested in learning more about our business plans, reach out to us today

Disclaimer: Joorney Business Plans is not a law firm nor an immigration consulting firm, and no information provided in this document should be considered as legal advice or recommendation regarding any immigration application program. All information provided in this document should be verified by a licensed or certified immigration professional before the reader can act on this information. As such, it is understood that Joorney Business Plans Inc. shall not be liable for any loss or damage of whatever nature (direct, indirect, consequential, or other), whether arising in contract, tort, or otherwise, which may arise as a result of your use of (or inability to use) this document, or from your use of (or failure to use) the information on this document.