This post was originally published on 15 May 2015.
Expatriates who reside in GCC countries like Qatar can now apply online for entry permits to visit UAE through Dubai. The service aims to expedite passenger movement at airports and relieve GCC residents of the hassle of waiting in queues for their visit visas, the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs has announced.
The online visa application system also features an online payment method which will help passengers avoid the long queues to pay visa fees.
As of now, the online system is not compulsory but merely an option for those who would like to complete the visa issuance procedure before arriving to the country. However, officials said that from October 1, all visa application processes for GCC residents must be completed online.
Gulf Times reports that the new online system which would be soft-launched today applies only to expatriates who were eligible to avail the visa on arrival facility. People who are non-eligible and those who will be rejected while applying online can apply or re-apply at any of the airlines’ offices.
The UAE immigration authorities have a list of GCC expatriate workers who qualified for the visa on arrival scheme, mostly professionals such as doctors, engineers, nurses, architects and journalists, among others.
The online visa process will take about two working days while the regular procedure takes about four to seven working days or maybe more.
Applicants should visit www.ednrd.ae, fill-up the form and pay the corresponding fee for the visa.
The entry permit is valid for 60 days from the date of issue. If the residence permit is expired/cancelled or profession is changed, the visitor will not be allowed to enter the UAE.