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Dubai introduces multiple-entry visa for Indian nationals

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi and Dubai's ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum inaugurate Bharat Mart, a market and trading platform for Indian businesses in Dubai Wam
Indian prime minister Narendra Modi and Dubai's ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum inaugurate Bharat Mart, a market and trading platform for Indian businesses in Dubai
  • 5-year permit welcomed by businesses
  • Maximum 180 days stay a year
  • 2.5m Indians visited Dubai in 2023

Dubai has introduced a five-year multiple-entry visa for Indian nationals to strengthen economic, tourism and business ties with India, the Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) has said.

The decision follows closely on the heels of prime minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UAE, marked by significant developments including the opening of the Middle East’s largest Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi, and the signing of new treaties in trade, investment, energy and technology.

The multiple entry visa, processable within two to five working days, permits a 90-day stay, extendable for another 90 days, with a maximum of 180 days within a year.

Though the five-year visa was announced in 2021, Ipshita Sharma, travel tailor at SCN Travel & More, clarified that it had not been easily accessible.

“The rollout was under process… but we weren’t able to get the visa.”

The new visa will alleviate the administrative burden for long-term UAE residents with family members who frequently visit Dubai.

“We don’t mind the extra cost if we don’t need to worry about applying for a visa each time,” she said. 

Dubai welcomed 2.5 million overnight visitors from India in 2023, a 25 percent increase on pre-pandemic levels, data from DET said. India also continued to be the number one source market for the UAE with the highest number of international visitors from a single country.

Earlier this month Emirates airline introduced a pre-approved 14-day single-entry visa on arrival for Indian passport holders who have booked flights with the Dubai carrier.

The UAE government has been making its visa policies more flexible over the past couple of years as part of economic reforms to diversify away from oil. 

It also introduced longer residencies for certain categories of investors, students and professionals and recently removed the AED1 million ($272,000) minimum down-payment requirement to qualify for a golden visa through real estate investment.

The UAE is home to 3.5 million Indian expatriates and a major trading ally for India.

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