Can You Live in Dubai Permanently?

Yes, you can live in Dubai permanently by purchasing real estate as an investment, which serves as a pathway to obtain the country’s permanent visa. This option is available for individuals with higher income.

However, the residence visa obtained through property investment has a validity period of two years. Dubai, located within the United Arab Emirates, is a popular destination for expatriates seeking to establish a long-term residency. In this guide, we will explore the conditions and requirements to be eligible for permanent residency in Dubai.

Whether you are considering purchasing real estate or seeking alternative pathways, we will provide the information you need to make an informed decision. Additionally, we will discuss the benefits of permanent residency in the UAE and other relevant considerations for those wishing to live in Dubai permanently.

Getting Permanent Residency In Dubai (Golden Visa)

The Golden Visa offers a pathway to long-term residency in the UAE, granting foreign individuals the opportunity to reside, work, or pursue studies while gaining access to special privileges. Eligible candidates include investors, entrepreneurs, scientists, exceptional students and graduates, humanitarian leaders, and frontline heroes. Explore the criteria and advantages of the Golden Visa, and access online services to initiate your application.

What is the UAE’s Golden visa?

The UAE’s Golden Visa is a long-term residence permit designed to empower foreign talents to reside, work, or study in the UAE while enjoying a range of exclusive benefits. These benefits include:

  • A six-month entry visa with multiple entries, facilitating the issuance of residence permits.
  • Long-term, renewable residence visas valid for either 5 or 10 years.
  • The privilege of not requiring a sponsor.
  • The flexibility to stay outside the UAE for more extended periods than the typical six months without affecting the validity of the residence visa.
  • The ability to sponsor family members, including spouses and children of any age.
  • The capacity to sponsor an unlimited number of domestic helpers.
  • Provision for family members to remain in the UAE until the end of their permit duration in case the primary Golden Visa holder passes away.
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Golden Visa Requirements

The requirements for obtaining a Golden Visa vary depending on the type of residence, whether investor, talent, entrepreneur, etc.

Investors in Public Investments

Investors in an investment fund may qualify for a 10-year Golden Visa without a sponsor, contingent upon:

  • Submission of a letter from a UAE-accredited investment fund confirming an AED two million deposit by the investor, or
  • Submission of a valid commercial or industrial license along with a memorandum of association indicating the investor’s capital is at least AED two million, and
  • Submission of a letter from the Federal Tax Authority confirming annual government payments of no less than AED 250,000.

Additionally, investors must:

  • Fully own the invested capital, which must not be a loan, and
  • Provide proof of medical insurance for themselves and their families (if applicable).

Real Estate Investors

Property owners may be eligible for a 5-year Golden Visa, renewable under the same conditions and without a sponsor, provided:

  • A letter from the land department of the respective emirate confirms ownership of one or more properties valued at no less than 2 million dirhams, and
  • The property purchase is financed by a loan from specific local banks approved by the competent local entity.


Entrepreneurs may obtain a 5-year Golden Visa if they own an economic project of a technical or future nature based on risk and innovation. Additionally, they must obtain approval letters from:

  • A UAE-based auditor confirming the project’s value is at least 500,000 dirhams,
  • Emirate authorities affirming the project’s technical or future-oriented nature, and
  • An accredited business incubator in the UAE to establish the proposed activity in the country.

Exceptional Specialized Talents

Exceptional specialized talents encompass a diverse range of individuals, including:

  • Doctors
  • Scientists
  • Creative figures in culture and the arts
  • Inventors
  • Executives
  • Specialists in scientific disciplines
  • Athletes
  • Holders of doctoral degrees
  • Experts in engineering and scientific domains

Engineering and scientific subjects include:

  • Epidemiology and virology
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Big data
  • Computer engineering
  • Electronic engineering
  • Software engineering
  • Electrical engineering
  • Genetics and biotechnology engineering

If you possess an outstanding specialized talent, you may qualify for a 10-year Golden Visa by fulfilling the specified requirements for each category:

Doctors and Scientists

  • For doctors: An approval letter from the Ministry of Health and Prevention in the UAE to practice medicine.
  • For scientists: A recommendation letter from the Emirates Council of Scientists or a letter from the Secretariat of the Mohammed bin Rashid Medal for Scientific Excellence confirming receipt of the Medal of Scientific Excellence.


  • A recommendation letter from the Ministry of Economy affirming that your patent contributes significant value to the country’s economy.

Creative Individuals in Culture and Art

  • An approval letter from the Department of Culture and Arts in the respective emirate.

Executive Directors

  • A certified copy of a university degree accredited by the Ministry of Education, with educational attainment not less than a bachelor’s degree.
  • A letter documenting a minimum of 5 years of experience in the same executive position.
  • A salary certificate demonstrating a minimum salary of AED 50,000.
  • A valid employment contract.


  • A recommendation letter from the General Sports Authority or one of the sports councils.

Specialists in Engineering and Science

  • A certified copy of a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree accredited by the Ministry of Education.
  • A valid employment contract.

Outstanding Students

High School Students

If you’re a high school student achieving national-level distinction, with a minimum grade of 95 percent in public or private secondary school, you may qualify for a 5-year Golden Visa without a sponsor. This is subject to providing a recommendation letter from the Ministry of Education (Emirates Schools Establishment). The Golden Visa duration for students is 5 years and may be extended if enrolled in majors or colleges that require a study period exceeding five years.

University Students

Outstanding university students may be eligible for a 10-year Golden Visa without a sponsor, under the condition that:

  • The university holds an A or B class rating by the Ministry of Education.
  • A recommendation letter from the university, an accredited graduation certificate, or an academic record confirming a cumulative GPA of not less than 3.5 for A class universities and 3.8 for B class universities is provided.
  • Graduation occurred no more than 2 years ago.

Outstanding students from foreign universities may also qualify for a 10-year Golden Visa without a sponsor, provided that:

  • The university ranks among the top 100 globally according to the rating system recognized by the Ministry of Education.
  • The cumulative GPA is not less than 3.5.
  • Graduation occurred no more than 2 years ago.
  • The graduation certificate is accredited by the Ministry of Education.

Pioneers of Humanitarian Work

Pioneers of humanitarian work may receive a 10-year Golden Visa if they fall into the following categories:

  • Members and exceptional employees with at least five years of service in international and regional organizations.
  • Members and outstanding employees with at least five years of service in civil associations and institutions of public interest.
  • Individuals who have received recognition awards from local, regional, or international organizations focusing on humanitarian work.
  • Humanitarian work funders, provided their support value is not less than two million UAE dirhams or its equivalent.

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