The first step is to apply for a residency entry permit. This is essentially a temporary visa that allows you access to the UAE for up to 60 days. Once you have obtained your entry permit you can enter the country (if not already in the UAE) to make your full residency visa application. It is best not to leave the UAE and re-enter until you have obtained your residency visa. Doing so can cause difficulties with immigration.
If your application is successful, you will receive your entry permit via email.
Once you have your entry permit, you must activate it. This is known as a status change and can be done in one of three ways. You can opt for an in-country status change which requires you to send your passport to UAE immigration services who will stamp and activate your visa.
Alternatively, you can activate your entry permit via an out of country status change – this an option if you are out of the country when making your visa application. Here you simply present your passport and entry permit to immigration at a UAE airport. It is then stamped and activated.
With your entry permit activated, you will then need to undergo a standardized medical test. This includes a blood test and x-ray.
Providing you pass your medical you can then apply for an Emirates ID card. As part of this process you may be required to visit an immigration center to submit biometric information such as your fingerprints and eye scan.
Finally, your residence visa will need to be issued and stamped. To complete this final stage we must submit your passport to immigration. They will then affix and stamp your visa in your passport before sending it back. This process usually takes around one week.