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emirates visa free countries

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Generally, whenever you are traveling to Dubai or any seven emirates of UAE, you are required to apply for an emirates travel visa. If you do not belong from any of the emirates visa free countries or visa on arrival, you will have to procure your emirates visa based on the purpose of your visit. Although, applying for and obtaining an emirates visa might be mandatory for many nationalists traveling to UAE. However, the government of other countries places the authority of administering entry restrictions on the citizens of UAE.

All the other countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have restrictions in their visa policies except UAE. The citizens of the UAE have visa-free entry into various countries. Around 2018, the UAE passport was ranked as the 23rd most powerful in the world under Henley Passport Index. According to this index, the global ranking of the emirates passport was pushed up to the 17th rank in terms of freedom of travel access with only 50 countries requiring entry visas to be approved by the UAE before arrival.

Ever since 8th November 2020, citizens of UAE have had visa on arrival or visa-free entry to 174 countries and territories. UAE is one of the very few countries that enjoy the privilege of visa-free entry to the majority of places resulting in the 19th ranking of emirates passports. According to Henley Passport Index, UAE’s 19th ranking is due to its freedom in terms of traveling to different countries across the globe.

UAE is renowned as one of the five passports owing to its improvement in the ranking over the recent years, making UAE one of the strongest emirates passports in the world.

From 2016, GCC residents have to apply for an emirates visa to enter UAE and can no longer avail of an emirates visa on arrival; however, other nationalists belonging to foreign countries apart from Gulf countries will have to apply for an emirates visa in advance to enter UAE. However, emirates citizens have visa-free entry to other GCC and also have working rights in these countries.

The UAE government issues an emirates visa on arrival depending on the duration of stay and some specific nationalities. GCC residents are not eligible for an emirates visa on arrival, while some other nationalities can obtain a visa on arrival and get visa-free entry into other countries, whereas, some have to apply for a UAE visa in advance.

Only the nationalities of GCC are not required to sponsor their permit or visa by any resident in UAE. GCC residents are granted a visa-free entry as they have to produce their passport or national ID card at every point of entry to the UAE.

Read Also: Emirates business visa

List of Emirates Visa free Countries:

This is the list of visa-free countries and territories that can obtain a free visa in UAE without a visa or are eligible to obtain a free UAE visa on arrival. These emirates visa-free countries are categorized into:

Emirates Visa Free Countries with ID permit:

  • Bahrain
  • Kuwait
  • Oman
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia

Emirates visa free countries for 180 days:

  • Mexico

Emirates Visa Free Countries for 90 days within any 180-day duration:

  • European Union countries (except Ireland)
  • Argentina
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belarus
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • El Salvador
  • Israel (eligible since 1st July 2021)
  • Honduras
  • Iceland
  • Kiribati
  • Liechtenstein
  • Maldives
  • Montenegro
  • Nauru
  • Norway
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Russia
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  • San Marino
  • South Korea
  • Serbia
  • Seychelles
  • Solomon Islands
  • Switzerland
  • Uruguay
  • Visa Free Countries for Emirates for 30 days:
  • Andorra
  • Australia
  • Brunei
  • Canada
  • China (Including those holding public affairs passport)
  • Hong Kong
  • Ireland
  • Japan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Macao
  • Malaysia
  • Mauritius
  • Monaco
  • New Zealand
  • Singapore
  • Ukraine (applicable to only those who are holders of biometrics passports only).
  • United Kingdom (The visa-free entry is applicable only for citizens of British Overseas Territories owning a certificate of entitlement to the right of abode.)
  • United States
  • Vatican City

Read Also: Emirates visa status


Q. Documents required to apply for an Emirates visa?

The documents required to apply for an emirates visa are:

  •       Passport-sized photograph of the applicant.
  •       Copy of applicant's passport has a validity of three months.
  •       The original application form that can be accessed in Arabic or English.
  •       Emirates ticket: A copy of the confirmed return ticket.

Q. What are the emirates travel visa requirements?

Here’s the list of emirates travel requirements to reach Dubai:

  • Check whether you require an emirates visa before booking a ticket: The UAE government issues an emirates visa on arrival depending on your nationality. However, you can apply for a pre-arranged visit visa from Dubai immigration, in case you do not fall under the emirates visa on arrival category.
  • Check the travel requirements by your destination to adhere to the specific departure requirements of your country from where you are traveling to Dubai.
  • You will be denied entry to Dubai if you have traveled to South Africa within 14 days of departure to Dubai. The new rule for South Africa remains in effect even if you have transited to other countries within 14 days.
  • Undertaking the COVID-19 PCR tests as litigated by the UAE Immigration laws: The tourists or visitors coming from the countries and territories listed for COVID-19 PCR are mandated to adhere to the test requirements.

Q. If you are not from a visa-free entry country, how can you obtain the emirates visa?

If you are a nationalist who does not belong to any of the emirates visa-free countries, you will have to apply for your UAE visa online. You can apply for your visa through the following steps:

  • Visit emirates visa online website.
  • Select your Citizenship Country and your Living Country from the options in dropbox. After selecting, click on the "Apply Visa for Emirates" tab.
  • This will direct you to another window consisting of a list of emirates visa types categorized broadly into ‘Tourist Visas’ and ‘Transit Visa’. Select your emirates visa type accordingly.
  • After checking the processing time, visa fees, emirates visa validity, process fees, etc. click “Proceed to Apply”.
  • The tab takes you to a general form fill-up wherein, you are required to fill in your details and upload the required documents.
  • After filling in the details and uploading the required document, click on “Proceed to Pay” and make the payment visa your preferred payment options available.

Q. How many countries does UAE give a visa-free entry permit to?

UAE is one of the very few countries that enjoy the privilege of visa-free entry to the majority of places resulting in the 19th ranking of emirates visa free countries. From 8th November 2020, citizens of the UAE can obtain a visa on arrival or visa-free entry to 174 countries and territories. 

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