The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has introduced a new system for residency visa holders who have stayed outside the country for more than six months. Read on to know all the details:
Also read: UAE Implements New Visa Overstay Fines For Tourist & Residency Visa Holders
New Rules For Residency Visa Holders
Residency visa holders can now apply for a permit to re-enter the UAE, but will need to provide a reason for their extended stay and furnish proof of that reason. The service, called ‘Issue permit for staying outside UAE over 6 months’, can be found under ‘smart services’ on the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs and Ports Security (ICP) website.
Residents can submit their application online, and will need to enter their own details and those of their sponsors, as well as their passport and residency-related information. The application includes a mandatory field for the reason for staying outside the UAE for six months or more. Once the application is submitted, it will be reviewed by the ICP, with the approval process taking around five days. After receiving an approval email, the applicant can re-enter the country.
Also read: You Can Now Get Your UAE Visa Via A Five-Minute Video Call
Other Changes To The Visa Systems
The new system replaces the previous in-person process that was in place before the Covid-19 pandemic. The change is the latest in a series of updates to the visa and residency system in the UAE. Earlier this month, the fees for ICP services, including those for issuing visas and Emirates IDs, were increased by AED 100.
Additionally, visit visas can no longer be extended within the UAE, and holders must leave the country and return on a fresh visa. The ICP also recently standardized the fine on overstaying visas in the country to AED 50. Read all the details here: UAE Scraps Visit Visa Extension Rules
These changes come after the UAE’s largest entry and residency visa reforms went into effect in October 2020. The reforms cover all aspects of residency, including an expanded Golden Visa scheme, a new five-year Green residency, a multiple-entry five-year tourist visa, and job hunting entry permits. Overall, the new system aims to streamline the process for residents who have been outside the country for extended periods, making it easier for them to re-enter the UAE.
Also read: Golden Visa Holders In Dubai Can Now Get A Driving License Without Training