The United Arab Emirates also known sometimes simply as the “Emirates” is one of the major countries in the Middle East sharing its borders with Oman in the East and with Saudi Arabia in the south. With a history of human cultures dating back to roughly 125,000 BCE, UAE’s socio-cultural tradition is layered with a variety of influences that inform its vibrant contemporary landscape. Today, cities such as Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the UAE are some of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, characterized by state-of-the-art facilities for both business and recreation. Overcoming significant economic crises in the first-half of the 20th century, the UAE revitalized itself not only as one of the largest oil reserves in the world but as an international transit point for aviation and maritime trade. Today, the UAE provides a wide range of potential for a variety of travellers who would like to have a bit of business and pleasure.
As of 2018, expatriates accounted for nearly 89% of UAE’s total population of 9.543 million at the time. With more than 4/5ths of its population being composed of non-native communities, the UAE is one of the most inclusive and welcoming regions in the world, characterized by a peculiar balance between globalized modernity and strong traditional roots. In 2018, Dubai welcomed almost 16 million international visitors and is fast becoming one of the most accessible and tourist-friendly regions in the world. Below, is a brief UAE travel guide.
Any Indian who has a valid passport or a visa to any of the schengen countries is essentially exempt from the need to get a UAE visa. A tourist visa can also be arranged for by a sponsor that one has in the UAE or can be got from a hotel booking in the UAE, through the Emirates airlines office, Air Arabia Office or through a travel agent in India. You can apply for a UAE visa at your closest visa application center with all the required documents and colored passport-sized photos as listed above. Visa application forms are available online. If you are a citizen of any one of the 22 nationalities exempt from visa requirements, then you can fill an online form and apply for an e-visa in less than 15 minutes.
The process differs slightly based on the eligibility criteria associated with the type of visa that you are trying to avail. The basic eligibility criteria for a UAE visa have been explored in the following section.
Any applicant who has travelled to the UAE at least once in the past 5 years preceding the time of application or has a visa to any of the Schengen countries or the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Switzerland is eligible to travel to the UAE.
The documents required for an application based on the travel history eligibility criteria are:
All applicants who have not fulfilled the eligibility criteria for travel history will need to submit legitimate financial records such as their income tax records of the past 2 years in Form 16 or records of income tax returns from the preceding 2 years. Also, the minimum gross income from any business, service or professional employment should exceed at least 2 lakhs per annum. In case that applicants are not able to submit these records, they can also provide records of investments of up to INR 5 lakhs that they have made in the form of FDs in a bank or post office.
While submitting proofs such as income tax returns, you need to submit all of the documents that you would, if you were providing proofs of travel history. The only other document that is mandatory would be originals and copies of income tax returns, salary slips from the preceding 6 months, copies of your PAN card and/or the originals and copies of your fixed deposit receipts.
Applicants/tourists can also travel to the UAE on the basis of invitations received from family residing in the UAE. Invitations can however only be provided to one’s spouse, children below the age of 21 and parents who are above the age of 60.
All documents are common as for applicants providing proof of travel or financial records with the exception of an invitation letter and a legitimate residence visa of family living in the UAE.
For recently or newly married couples, in case the name is endorsed on the passport, they need to produce:
In addition to the various documents that one will need to submit depending on the nature of visit, applicants may also be asked for other documents as deemed necessary by immigration authorities in the UAE. An important point to note here is that all unaccompanied students and women below the age of 25 will need to pre-approved by guardians or parents.
The different types of visa for travel to the UAE are based on the duration of stay. They are as follows:
Over and above these documents, travellers applying for a 90 day visa to visit the UAE may also need to submit other documents if requested by the immigration authorities.
The fees for availing a 90 day visa is INR 14,100 and is typically processed in 3 to 4 days.
6.Multi-Entry 30 Day Visa: This visa is for travellers who will likely be entering and visiting the UAE for a total duration of 30 days spread out across multiple visits. The entry validity for this visa is 58 days and this multiple-entry visa can be extended for 30 day period not more than two times. The fees for this visa is INR 13,580 and typically takes between 3 and 4 days for processing.
7. Multi-Entry 90 Day Visa: This visa is for travellers wanting to visit the UAE for a period of 90 days spread across multiple visits. The visa can be extended for 30-day periods twice and the fee for extensions is AED 850. Like the normal single-entry 90 day visa, travellers will need to provide specific documents depending on the nature and purpose of their visit, whether it be for official, personal or property and tenancy related.
In either case, all applicants will need to provide covering letters mentioning the purpose of their travel, details of hosts in the UAE and a self-attested guarantee that they will not overstay their visit in addition to their visa duration. Applicants will also need to submit details of two local contacts in the city or region that they are visiting.
1. Do I need to have booked my tickets to the UAE before doing my visa?
No. You can apply for and get your visa as late as 4 days before your planned departure.
Unfortunately, no. Your passport will need to be valid till at least 6 months after the date of arrival.
Yes, that is correct. There is a nominal security deposit that will be refunded within 4 working days of your departure from the UAE.
Yes. Infants and children also need visas.
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The following medical expenses are covered:
“Deductible”means a cost-sharing requirement under this policy, that provides that the insurer will not be liable for a specified rupee amount or percentage of claim amount or number of days or number of hours, as specified in the policy schedule and which will apply before any benefits are payable by the insurer. A deductible does not reduce the sum insured and is applicable per event, upto the specified limits mentioned.
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Loss of passport and documents:
Reimbursement of actual expenses incurred in connection with obtaining a duplicate or fresh passport or reasonable cost of replacing/obtaining the stolen documents/ tickets if the passport belonging to the Insured / Insured Person be lost
Home Fire Insurance Contents & Home Burglary Insurance (contents):
Cover against any loss or damage of the Contents at Home of the Insured in India caused by Fire and Allied perils or through burglary and/or housebreaking while the Insured is on a trip abroad.
Hijack Distress Allowance
Payment of distress allowance in case of hijack of a common carrier for more than certain number of hours whilst on the trip. You can easily avail the allowance by filing a claim online through Travel Insurance cover online process.
Medical Expensesinclusive of Repartration and Emergency Medical Evacuation
If you are sick or injured during the journey, your medical expenses can prove to be costly. In such cases, Travel Insurance cover greatly helps. The insurance company also offers a cashless settlement with the network hospitals or you can also opt for the reimbursement process within 30 days of hospitalization.
Payment of legal costs and expenses incurred by the Insured towards claims from third Parties for compensation in respect of death or disablement arising due to an injury whilst on a trip abroad.
Payment of compensation if the Insured sustains accidental bodily injury during a trip resulting in death or Permanent Total Disablement or Permanent Partial Disablement within 12 months of occurrence of such injury.
Trip Cancellation/Or Interruption
Payment towards the non-refundable prepaid payments incurred on the trip being cancelled and additional cost of transportation in case of Interruption: due to medical problems, personal employment problems or natural disasters or other listed reason in policy wordings.
Reimbursement of additional expenses if trip is delayed beyond a period, due to airline problems, medical problems, personal employment problems or natural disasters.
Daily Allowance in case of Hospitalisation
Payment of daily allowance for the days the Insured is hospitalised beyond a specified number of days, as mentioned in the Policy Schedule, for which a valid claim is admissible under the Policy whilst on a trip abroad.Emergency Accommodation
Payment of compensation for the additional cost of emergency accommodation if the Insured/ Insured Person could not stay in the accommodation originally booked due to fire& flood, earthquake, storm, hurricane, explosion, outbreak of major infectious diseases.
During a trip there are chances of unfortunate events such as loss of checked in baggage, medical emergency, loss of passport that can spoil your international trip, be it business or leisure. Travel insurance can protect you from such events ensuring that you are left stuck in foreign land.