How Long does it take to get a Work Visa for United Arab Emirates


Are you dreaming of working in the dazzling United Arab Emirates? Imagining yourself amidst towering skyscrapers, luxury shopping malls, and a vibrant cosmopolitan lifestyle? Well, you’re not alone! Many people around the world are attracted to the career opportunities and high standard of living offered by the UAE. But before you can embark on your exciting journey, there’s one crucial thing you need – a work visa. In this article, we’ll dive into the depths of the work visa process and explore the burning question on everyone’s mind – how long does it take to get a work visa for the United Arab Emirates? So, let’s delve into the world of work visas and discover the timelines involved.

Understanding the Process

Getting a work visa for the United Arab Emirates involves navigating a series of steps and procedures. The process might feel a bit overwhelming at first, but don’t worry – we’re here to guide you through it. So, fasten your seatbelts and let’s embark on this visa adventure together!

1. Job Offer Letter: The Journey Begins

Obtaining a job offer letter from a UAE employer is the first milestone on your visa journey. This letter serves as a formal invitation to work in the country. It outlines your proposed designation, salary, and employment terms. Once you have this crucial document in hand, you’re ready to move forward.

2. Medical Fitness: Taking Care of Your Health

Next up is the medical fitness test. The UAE government wants to ensure that foreign workers entering the country are in good health. You’ll need to undergo a medical examination, which includes a physical check-up, blood tests, and a chest x-ray. Don’t worry, this step isn’t as daunting as it sounds. In most cases, the medical fitness test can be completed within a day.

3. Emirates ID Application: Your Identity Awakens

Now that you’ve passed the medical fitness test, it’s time to apply for your Emirates ID – an essential document for living and working in the UAE. The Emirates ID is a plastic card that serves as your identification proof, akin to a national ID card. It will be required for various transactions, such as opening a bank account or signing a lease agreement. The application process can take a few weeks, as it involves biometrics and background checks.

4. Entry Permit Application: Opening the Door to UAE

After obtaining the job offer letter, passing the medical fitness test, and applying for your Emirates ID, it’s time to move on to the entry permit application. This permit allows you to enter the UAE legally and commence the visa process. Your employer will typically handle this application on your behalf. The processing time for the entry permit can vary, but it usually takes around a week.

5. Status Change: Transiting to a Work Visa

Once you’ve arrived in the UAE with your entry permit, the next step is to undergo a status change from entry permit to a work visa. This process involves submitting the required documents to the relevant government authorities, such as your passport, photographs, and copies of your job offer letter and entry permit. The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation will review your application, and upon approval, your status will be officially changed to a work visa. The processing time for this step typically ranges from one to two weeks.


Congratulations! You’ve made it to the end of the work visa journey. While the exact time frames can vary depending on various factors, such as the efficiency of the processing authorities and the completeness of your application, the overall process usually takes around one to three months. It’s important to keep in mind that patience and perseverance are key during this time. So, get ready for your new adventure, pack your bags, and set sail towards your dream job in the United Arab Emirates!


1. Can the work visa application process be expedited?

Unfortunately, the work visa process follows a predefined timeline, and expediting it isn’t always possible. However, having a complete and accurate application, along with prompt submission of required documents, can help ensure a smoother and faster process.

2. What if my employer doesn’t handle the visa process for me?

If your employer doesn’t handle the visa process, you can contact local immigration agencies or consultancies specializing in visa services. They can guide you on the necessary steps and assist you throughout the process.

3. Do I need a work visa sponsor in the UAE?

Yes, a work visa for the UAE requires a sponsor, which is usually your employing company. They will facilitate the visa process and provide the necessary documentation to support your application.

4. Can I change jobs in the UAE after obtaining a work visa?

Yes, it is possible to change jobs in the UAE after obtaining a work visa. However, this process involves certain legal procedures and coordination between your current and prospective employers, as well as the relevant government authorities. It’s essential to abide by the country’s labor laws and regulations while switching jobs.

5. What happens if my work visa application is rejected?

In the unfortunate event of your work visa application being rejected, it’s crucial to consult with your employer and immigration experts to understand the reason for the rejection. You may be able to reapply, addressing any issues that led to the rejection. Having a clear understanding of the visa requirements and seeking professional guidance can increase your chances of a successful application.

Now that you have a clearer understanding of the work visa process for the United Arab Emirates, you can begin your journey with confidence and excitement. Good luck and bon voyage!