Residents and tourists at Dubai mall, Burj Khalifa Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Dubai: Are you planning to move to the UAE to work or start a business? The UAE is regularly ranked among the top countries in the world for expatriates, with a high quality of life and security. If you are planning to become a UAE resident, here are some more benefits that you can enjoy:

1. Open a bank account

When opening a savings or current account in the UAE, one of the primary documents required by banks is the applicant’s Emirates ID. If you are a UAE resident, you will be able to open an account relatively easily, as long as you fulfil the minimum salary and other requirements, as per the bank’s regulations.

If you are not holding a UAE residence visa, you may still be able to request for a non-resident bank account, but there are certain limitations that you would have to consider. For example, you may have higher minimum salary and minimum balance requirements and the bank may only allow you to open a savings account, which means you may not have access to services like a cheque book.

2. Access financial facilities

Apart from easily opening a bank account, as a resident, you will also be able to access finance services, like applying for a car loan, personal loan or mortgage. To know more about how you can apply for a loan in the UAE, click here.

3. Apply for a driving licence

One of the biggest rites of passage for new UAE residents is getting a driving licence. Depending on your nationality or country of residence, you may be able to convert your current driving licence to a UAE driving licence. If not, you would need to apply at a driving institute, to take driving lessons and a test, before getting a driving licence.

Also read

4. Access government health services and health insurance

Based on the emirate you are in, health insurance is either mandatory or optional. However, even in the Emirates where health insurance is optional, it is advisable to get yourself covered as healthcare costs can become a significant financial burden in emergencies or chronic conditions.

One of the benefits of having a residence visa is the ability to also access government health services at reduced costs, by getting a health card. To know more about the health card fees for the Health Card issued by the Emirates Health Services (EHS), and how you can get one, click here.

5. Register your children in government schools and in private schools

According to the UAE government’s official website –, expatriate students have been permitted to attend public schools against certain fees and approval, based on merit, since 2001.

However, expatriates have to consider many factors before deciding to register their children in public schools. Foreigners, especially non-Arabic speakers should know that the language of instruction in the UAE's public schools is Arabic for all subjects. They also follow the Emirati national curriculum approved and supervised completely by MoE. English is taught as a second language for basic grammar and comprehension.

Expatriate students are charged tuition fees as per the applied regulations.

Private schools

An Emirates ID card of the parent is one of the required documents that private schools ask for when a child is enrolled in the UAE. If you want to know more about the admissions process that you would need to follow, and other documents you must prepare in advance, read our detailed guide here.

6. Work and invest

As a UAE resident, you will also find several options to either work and invest in the UAE. In fact, the UAE has recently introduced special categories of residence visas, offering long-term residency options, to certain professionals and investors. Read more here.

7. Travel visa–free to certain destinations

Did you know that several countries also offer the option to visit visa free or get a visa on arrival, if you are a UAE resident? However, it is important to note that the immigration requirements may vary slightly depending on your nationality, and it is advisable to check with the foreign embassies in the UAE, before you plan your trip.

Want to know more about how you can become a UAE resident? Read our detailed guide here.

Do you have any questions related to the topics covered in the Living in UAE section? Write to us at