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Special Rules for Work Permits and Visa on Arrival in UAE

Every country has different rules on how and where visas and work permits are issued, and the UAE has an unusual process that you should know about.  In our experience, most countries will stamp the work visa into the passport while you are still in your own country, and then you would already have it while traveling and upon arrival in the destination country.  But the UAE takes a different approach and will issue the work visa on arrival in UAE.

How Does Visa on Arrival in UAE Work?

Because citizens of 47 different countries can get a visa on arrival in the Dubai airport, there is no need to secure a work visa prior to traveling.  When the worker lands, an Employment Entry Visa is collected from a desk prior to the immigration checkpoint.  When you pass through immigration, your date of entry is stamped into your passport, and you can legally enter the country for your assignment.

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How Does Shield GEO Assist with the Visa on Arrival in UAE?

Every foreign worker that we employ through our GEO goes through this process.  Some companies may ask their employees to handle this on their own (or with the assistance of HR).  However, if this is the first time for an employee entering the UAE, it may be helpful to have an experienced ally in the country. Because we have local resources in the UAE that deal with this routinely, we can make sure that the Employment Entry Visa is actually ready when the employee arrives.  Obviously, this gives the employee peace of mind when entering a new country, and smooths the transition for them.

We just ask the employee traveling (or HR department) to give us three days notice before they arrive in the airport so we can have work visa waiting for them, and avoid any immigration delays or confusion.  Most of the time, the employee will know their arrival date much further in advance, but they need to notify us if there are any changes in travel plans.

Naturally, many employees traveling on assignment are nervous about arrival in the host country, and want to make sure that they have all of the right documents.  Our GEO partners make sure that everything is in place before the worker arrives.  We take the initiative to explain to the employee how it works, and where to pick up the visa when they arrive.  If there are any issues, we are in a position to assist and straighten out any problems.

Where Can I Find More Information on Visa on Arrival?

A description of the visa on arrival in the UAE and entire process can be found here.

If you have additional questions or need guidance on employment and immigration requirements in the UAE please contact us.


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