Here is a list of self-sponsored visas in UAE that you can obtain without a sponsor. Read on to learn more about the types, costs, and validity of self-sponsored visas.

If you wish to reside in UAE without a job, then you are lucky as the country has launched a couple of self-sponsored visas to facilitate the expat population. These visas do not require a sponsor and can be obtained by anyone who stands eligible.

While the majority of expats live and work in UAE on work-based visas that typically require a local sponsor, there is now a variety of visas that expats can obtain to live in the country without working.

If you are interested in knowing more about the types, costs, and validity of self-sponsored visas in UAE, then scroll down and take a look at the valuable insights to help you along the way.

You might also like to read: A Quick Guide to Job Loss Insurance in UAE

Self-Sponsored Visas in Dubai that do not require a Sponsor

UAE comprises around 89% of expats, who come to the country to enjoy a relaxed lifestyle. If you too are thinking of relocating to the UAE, then you are probably not alone. Every year hundreds of expats flock to the country to work and settle their lives along with family.

UAE has recently been named as the most preferable country for expats to enjoy a comfortable life. With tax-free salaries, quality education, amazing work opportunities, a plethora of dining options, and family-friendly recreational spots, it’s pretty easy to conclude why.

The country has long been accommodating expats from all around the world with an extensive range of visas and residency options. While a work-based visa is the most common option that expats utilize to reside in the country, it’s probably not the only way to acquire residency.

The UAE government has launched several self-sponsored visas that do not require an Emirati sponsor and allow individuals to live and work in the country without being employed in a local organization.

We have compiled a list of self-sponsored visas available in UAE along with sufficient details to help you make an informed choice. Keep reading and discover some of the most common types of visas that do not require a sponsor to obtain long-term residency in the UAE.

  1. Two-Year Real Estate Investor Visa

As the name implies, the real estate visa grants people an entry visa to the UAE if they invest a minimum of AED 750,000 in real estate. If you own or can own a property in UAE worth AED 750,000 then you stand eligible to apply for the Property Investor Visa.

If the property you own or intend to buy is mortgaged, then you would be required to obtain an NOC certificate and property mortgage statement. This type of self-sponsored visa can be applied via the Dubai Land Department Cube Centre and does not require the applicant to be employed.

This means you can live in the UAE without working. The visa does not require a local sponsor and allows the visa holders to bring in their family and dependents. However, you would need to sort out your and your family’s medical insurance.

Required Documents:

  • A Copy of Property’s title deed
  • A copy of the sale certificate
  • An NOC from the Bank in case the property is mortgaged
  • A valid marriage certificate if you share the property with your spouse
  • A copy of your existing UAE visa
  • A copy of the Emirates ID
  • Passport sized photograph

Visa Cost: AED 10,212

Renewal Cost: AED 7958

  1. UAE Golden Visa

You must have heard a lot about the UAE Golden Visa. In year 2019, the UAE Government launched the Golden Visa Scheme allowing expats to obtain long-term residency in UAE. This is one of the most sought-after self-sponsored visas that the government has launched up till now.

Golden visa holders can work, study, and live in the country if their visa remains valid. This type of self-sponsored visa does not require a local sponsor or employment and one can reside in the country without having a job.

Golden visa holders can work on their own or for another organization or company without having an individual sponsorship. Contrary to work-based visas, the Golden Visa allows its holders to live in the country for a long time without being employed.

Who is Eligible?

A lot of people can apply for a golden visa including:

  • Highly skilled and educated professionals especially those working in the medicine, education, and law sectors. One has to have a college degree and a monthly income of AED 30,000.
  • Business owners and entrepreneurs who have a registered business in UAE with a gross annual income of AED 1 million or more.
  • Individuals who have invested in real estate or own a property in their name.
  • High-performing school and university students who demonstrate exceptional academic performance. The students who hold golden visas can also sponsor their parents and family.


Golden Visas are acquired for 5 and 10 years depending on the eligibility of the applicant. The visa holder can even stay out of the country for more than 6 months and can return anytime as per their choice.

Also, a golden visa holder can sponsor his/her family and domestic helpers for 10 years. This is by far one of the best self-sponsored visas in UAE for expats who wish to reside in the country for the long term.

Golden Visa Cost:

AED 2800 to AED 4800 for a 10-year visa

  1. Retirement Visa

The next one on our list of self-sponsored visas in UAE is Retirement Visa for Older people. Individuals over the age of 55 who want to spend the rest of their lives in the UAE can apply for a 5-year retirement visa. This is one of the many self-sponsored visas that individuals can obtain to reside in the UAE without working.

To be able to apply for a UAE retirement visa, the applicant must be at least 55 years old and have medical insurance that provides coverage in the UAE.

Also, one must either own a real estate property worth more than AED 2 million or have savings of at least AED 1 million in the bank.

Individuals who have a monthly income of at least AED 20,000 can also apply for a retirement visa in the UAE. Retirement Visa holders can work part-time in UAE and educational and health facilities just like other ordinary residents.

However, these visa holders cannot work full-time and are not eligible to receive governmental grants and pensions.

Required Documents:

  • Copy of a valid passport
  • Copy of marriage certificate if sponsoring the spouse
  • Copy of valid UAE residency if applying from within the country
  • Copy of valid Emirates ID
  • Proof of income and savings evidence
  • Valid medical insurance

Visa Cost: AED 6984

Visa Renewal Cost: AED 6419

Retirement Visa holders can renew their visas as long as they provide proof of the required financial standing. Retirement visa holder can sponsor their spouse and children and renew their visas upon expiry.

  1. Virtual Work Residency Visa/ Remote Visa

The Remote Visa is for individuals who wish to continue with their existing jobs and relocate to UAE. This visa allows holders to work remotely and stay in the country for up to 1 year. You would need to apply for a remote visa from the Visit Dubai Visa Portal.

The one-year visa allows individuals to enter the UAE on self-sponsorship and continue working for their employer outside the country.

Required Documents

  • To apply for a virtual work residency visa, one must present:
  • A valid passport with a minimum validity of 6 months
  • Valid health insurance with coverage in the UAE
  • Proof of employment outside UAE (The employment contract must be valid for 1 year)
  • Proof of income (you must have a minimum salary of USD 35, 00 a month or AED 12,853)
  • 3 months bank statement
  • Those who own a company or organization must provide proof of ownership

Visa Cost: AED 1050 per person

  1. Green Visa

The Green Visa is a newly launched initiative by the UAE Government to facilitate the diverse expat community residing in the UAE. This visa is intended to accommodate freelancers, self-employed individuals, investors, and skilled professionals who wish to reside in the country without a sponsor.

Individuals from the categories mentioned above can apply for a green visa and reside in the country for 5 years even without a job.

Required Documents

To be able to apply for a green visa, you would have to submit:

  • An application to obtain a freelance permit from the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization.
  • Proof of education
  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Proof of annual income for at least the past two years
  • Minimum annual salary of AED 15,000 a month
  • Proof of employment/business

In addition, one must be employed in the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd occupational level as specified by MOHRE. Freelancers applying for a Green Visa must provide proof of valid UAE residence and hold a bachelor’s degree or diploma of equivalent level. Investors who wish to obtain a Green Visa must own a property in UAE worth AED 2 million or more or present proof of savings amounting to no less than AED 1 million.

Visa Cost: AED 2280 per person

Green visa holders can sponsor families and dependents by paying an individual fee of AED 2280 for each applicant.

Bottom Line:

The UAE Government has always worked for the betterment of expats and taken initiatives to promote their well-being. With the launch of self-sponsored visas the country now allows freelancers, skilled professionals, investors, retired individuals, and remote workers to obtain long-term residency. These unique visas do not require a local sponsor and can be acquired without a job.

If you too are interested in obtaining a self-sponsored visa and wish to reside in UAE without working, then you may consider any of the above-mentioned options. To get detailed information on the self-sponsored visas, we recommend you visit the official online portal of the UAE Government at

Also read: 14 Cheapest Countries to Work Remotely 


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