Becoming a freelance worker in the UAE!

Follow due process and become your own boss by going freelance in the profession of your choice.

Sankar Pillai
April 22, 2021

Even as we wade into this topic, let it be known that there are essentially three professions in the UAE that allow freelance workers to operate – education, media and IT.

That said, there’s something alluring about those who are masters of their own time. There are the pitfalls, of not being sure where your next pay check is coming from, and on how you are going to pull through a rather rough month when work and projects are on the low and slow.

However, being able to dedicate me time as and when one chooses, dedicating time towards a passion project or a hobby close to your heart are the little joys that most professionals covet but can’t usually commit to because of pressures at the workplace. A freelancer doesn’t necessarily need to bother as they essentially dictate the time and place that their work takes them and not the other way around. Interested, then in becoming a freelance worker in the UAE? Read on.

Apply for a freelance permit and visa

Working as a freelancer in Dubai requires a residency visa and work permit. This can be arranged from one of several free zones in the Emirate such as Dubai Production City, Dubai Design District, Dubai Knowledge Park and Dubai Media City. In the Capital, this can be obtained from twofour54, while the Northern Emirate has entities such as Fujairah Creative City doing the honours.

In 2018, through, a new scheme set up by the Tecom Group through their portal GoFreelance, started allowing UAE residents to start applying online for a freelance permit for Dh 7,500. The service, launched in partnership with the Dubai Creative Cluster Authority, also allows applicants to sponsor their family members.

Documents to be readied

The documents required to apply for a freelance permit may vary from free zone to free zone. However, they essentially include a business plan, bank reference latter, CV profile/ degree certificate (attested from the UAE embassy in the country of origin of the applicant as well as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the UAE), a copy of a no-objection certificate or NOC from the current sponsor of the applicant, as well as a copy of the applicant’s passport.

Let it be known that those employed full time can also freelance. However, this will require applying for a part time work permit from the UAE Ministry of Labour, as well as approvals from your current employer as well as part-time employer.

Interested in checking out options in the freelancing space in the UAE. is one of the largest repositories of lucrative jobs for professionals and freelancers alike. Log on to find out what’s in store today!

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