Planning to visit the United Arab Emirates (UAE)? Then we have good news for you. While you do need a visa (on arrival for US passport holders) to visit the UAE, extending your visa just got a lot easier.
Most people who visit the UAE do so with either a visit visa, which is valid for up to three months, or a tourist visa, which is only valid for one month. The rule used to be that if you wanted to spend more time in the country, you needed to leave the UAE and apply for a new visa in order to return without facing fines. Now, anyone with a visit or tourist visa can extend their visa by thirty days, and this can be done twice. To do so, the person simply needs to have the travel agent or agency that applied for the original visa apply for an extension before the initial visa expires.
This change is primarily meant to help people who visit the UAE to find a new job. Evidently, thousands of people travel to the country every month looking for better work opportunities than they can find in their home countries, but the process is not always short or easy. In the past, job seekers would frequently need to exit the UAE and return with a new visa one or more times before landing a job, which was a major financial burden.
Needless to say, job seekers in the UAE are rejoicing over the change.
What kind of work is available in the UAE? The country has strong ties to the United Kingdom and has a large expat community. One of the most progressive countries in the area, the UAE is home to both vast deserts and major corporations.
Some of the most prominent companies doing business in the UAE are British. In fact, over 5,000 British companies operate in the UAE. Those companies include BP, Rolls-Royce, Shell, HSBC, and Mott McDonald. Other major companies with offices in the UAE include DHL, Onnicom Media Group, Hilton Worldwide, AstraZeneca Gulf, 3M, and Estee Lauder.
The biggest industries represented in the UAE are petroleum, petrochemicals, construction materials, and textiles. The main languages spoken at businesses in the country include Arabic, Persian, English, Urdu, and Hindi. Skilled workers are in high-demand, but that doesn’t always mean that finding the right fit is easy. Fortunately, this new rule change should make finding a good job at a well-established company a less stressful and costly process for many expats.
If you’re planning a trip to the United Arab Emirates, visit our visa page to learn about the current requirements for UAE visas, or simply give our office a call. Fortunately, at this time you won’t need an expedited UAE visa, because as a US passport holder, you can enter the UAE and receive a visa on arrival. But that isn’t the case for people of every nationality. Call us anytime of the day or night to learn more about expedited visas and expedited passport services.
Rob Lee is co-founder of Swift Passport and Visa Services. Originally from Michigan, Rob is an avid fisherman and SCUBA diver who enjoys adventure travel.