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Dubai: Have you been considering the idea of moving to the UAE and work? If so, you might have many questions on your mind – how can you go about the process? How easy or hard will it be to find a job opening? And what should you do if you get a job offer?

Here, we list 9 tips to keep in mind when travelling to the UAE as a jobseeker.

1. Apply for the jobseeker visit visa

The UAE recently amended its visa regulations, with new categories of visas being introduced earlier this month. Following these updates, you can now apply for a visit visa for two, three or four months, without the need for a person in the UAE to sponsor your visa, as these visas are ‘self-sponsored’. You can apply for the visa online, by submitting the required documents (passport copy, college degree, etc.) and making the payment based on the duration for which you wish to stay. You can apply for the visa through two online portals:

1. The website of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) Dubai, which is the immigration authority for the Emirate of Dubai
2. The website of the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs and Ports Security (ICP), which is the immigration authority for Abu Dhabi and the other Emirates in the UAE.

For a detailed guide on how to apply for the jobseeker visa through GDRFA Dubai, read our guide here.

For a detailed guide on how to apply for the jobseeker visa through ICP, read our detailed guide here.

2. Travel rules for people coming to the UAE

Once you have your visa in place, you will need to make sure you are complying with the latest COVID-19 travel rules in the UAE for inbound passengers. Apart from a copy of visa, you also need to present a COVID-19 vaccine certificate, of a vaccine approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO) or the UAE, which also includes a QR code.

If you are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19, you will need to present a negative Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test result, with the test taken within 48 hours of arrival, or a COVID-19 recovery certificate, issued within 30 days of departure. For a more detailed guide on the travel rules in place in the UAE, click here.

Once you are in the UAE, you might also want to follow these five steps to get you set up.

3. Where should I apply?

You can start your job hunt by looking at job openings on online portals or through the Classifieds section in newspapers. However, it is also important to assess any job offers you may get to ensure you do not fall prey to any job scams. For example, any one asking you to pay a fee in exchange for a ‘guaranteed job’ should be an immediate red flag.

4. Skills to develop

There are also certain skills that employers in the UAE are looking for, according to a recent survey released by, an online job portal, and YouGov, a British international Internet-based market research and data analytics firm. As per the survey, these are the top 10 skills that employers are looking for in the Middle East:

1. Good communication skills in Arabic and English - 62%
2. Team player/cooperative/ helpful/ flexible - 42%
3. Ability to work under pressure - 37%
4. Good leadership skills - 35%
5. Trustworthy/ honest - 34%
6. Good negotiation skills - 33%
7. Efficient/productive - 33%
8. Overall personality and demeanour - 33%
9. Passionate/ desire to make a difference - 33%
10. Ability to take on new challenges - 29%

The survey also found the top roles that are being filled this year by employers in the region, as well as the degrees that are most sought after.

5. Writing your CV – avoid these five mistakes

Apart from highlighting the necessary skills and qualifications in your CV, you should also avoid certain mistakes, which may reduce your chances of getting a call back from potential employers. As per experts interviewed by Gulf News, not only is it important to make sure that your CV matches your LinkedIn profile, you might also be applying for job openings without really paying attention to the job profile. To know more about top tips to follow when drafting your CV, read our detailed guide here.

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6. Got a job offer? These are the details the letter should include

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE) regulates the private sector in the UAE and employers and employees are required to follow the UAE Labour Law – Federal Decree Law No. 33 of 2021. As per MOHRE, when a company offers a job to a jobseeker, it should contain certain details, including:

• Details of your salary (basic and allowance)
• The duration of the contract
• Work conditions

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However, before you can legally start working in the UAE, you would need to complete certain procedures.

7. Get your documents in order

Once your contract and salary negotiations are completed with the Human Resources (HR) department of the company and you have received an official offer letter from them, you may be asked by the HR department for some documents. This is so they can start the work permit application process. You may also need to go on a company visa, which means that your UAE residence visa is sponsored by your employer. Normally, these are the documents that are required for the issuance of a work permit and work visa:

• Passport copy
• Passport-sized photograph
• Attested university degrees or professional certificates

You may also be asked for additional documents, based on the specific requirements in your case, like giving a marriage certificate or children’s birth certificate, in case of a family sponsorship. Read more here.

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8. Read your employment contract before signing it

As per the UAE Labour Law, you should only start working with an employer after signing the work contract and after the work permit is issued to you by MOHRE. When you are about to sign your work contract, make sure you read it to ensure it conforms with the details of the offer letter. This means that your job role and responsibilities and salary details are the same as your offer letter.

Here are the details an employment contract should include, as per the executive regulations of the UAE Labour Law:

• The name and address of the employer.
• The name, nationality and date of birth of the worker.
• Proof of his identity, his qualification, the job or occupation.
• The date of work commencement, the workplace.
• The working hours.
• The rest days.
• The probationary period, if any.
• The term of the contract.
• The wage agreed upon including the benefits and allowances.
• The annual leave entitlements, the notice period.
• The procedures for terminating the employment contract and any other data determined by the Ministry in order to regulate the relationship between both parties.

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9. Know your rights as per the UAE Labour Law

Once you do find a job, make sure that you are aware of the labour law and your rights and responsibilities as a worker. For example, shifting jobs during the probation period, which usually lasts for six months, can come with certain legal and financial implications. To know more read here.

If you have questions regarding working in the UAE, or other topics covered in the Living in UAE section, write to us at