Everything you need to know about UAE’s new visa policy


UAE has launched some major changes to its visa policy that will not just benefit expatriates, but boost the local economy as well.

The new visa rules that allows visitors and tourists to apply for new UAE entry visas without leaving the country, and also grant one-year residency extensions to widows and divorced women, has come into effect this Sunday, October 21.

Here are the major changes to the visa rules:

1) 60 days renewal for visit visas

Visit visa holders will be able to apply for 30-day extensions twice without having to leave the country. A Dh600 fee is applicable for each extension.

Previously, visitors had to leave the UAE after the expiry of their three-month visit visas or one-month tourist visas.

Those found violating or delaying in applying under the new rules will be granted a 10-day grace period, after which they will be fined AED 100 per day.


  • Expatriates living in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries and those accompanying citizens of Gulf countries do not qualify.
  • Special entry permits and 96-hour special mission entry visas are not included.
  • Each extension will be for 30 days. The 30-day extension can be availed of only twice.

2) Extensions for widows and divorced women

Widows and divorced women to extend their visas by a year from the date of death or divorce and will also cover any children residing in the UAE.

For the procedure, the government will charge AED 100 for cancelling the previous visa and AED 100 for the new one-year residency visa.


  • The applicant should have the residency visa sponsored by the deceased or former husband at the time of death or divorce.
  • The residency visa should also be valid at the time of death or divorce, and the children’s residency period does not exceed that of the mother.
  • There should also be proof that the woman has been divorced or widowed, and that she has a residence and the financial ability to provide for the family.

Previously, women and their children had to leave the country after a divorce or death of their husband.

3) One-year residency visa for children

One-year visas will be given to students after Grade 12 or those who have completed their university studies. Parents will need to deposit Dh5,000 to avail of the visa. The visa is renewable for another year.

Students should submit their attested academic certificates for high school or university and other supporting documents that show that they have studied in the UAE.

Published on 21 October 2018

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