What You Can Do if Your UAE Visa is Expired or Canceled
In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), your visa can expire, or you can even cancel your visa. If your visa has expired or has been canceled, there are several options for you to avoid unnecessary fees, from applying for a different visa to update your visa status to simply visiting a different emirate.
In this Pacific Prime UAE article, we provide all the details you need to know about what you can do if your UAE visa expires or is canceled.
Differences Between Residence, Tourist, and Visit Visas
The main difference between Residence, Tourist, and Visit Visas is the duration you can stay in the UAE and whether or not you are allowed to work or study during your stay. For expats in the UAE, the visa typically used is the residence visa.
Options for Expired Visas
If you have an expired visa, don’t worry. The UAE has a grace period of up to 30 days. During the grace period, you have several options to stay in the country. The first being renewing your visa. This usually takes approximately 7-10 working days, allowing you to stay in the UAE without leaving.
If renewal is not possible or takes time, an option you can take is to simply leave and re-enter the country. You will have to leave the country before your visa expires or during the grace period. Once outside, you can apply for a new visit or tourist visa to re-enter.
You can also benefit from the UAE visa waiver program that allows foreigners to visit the UAE without obtaining a visa in advance. However, the purpose of the visit can only be for tourism or business-related purposes. You cannot work in the UAE if you enter through the waiver program.
The waiver procedures for expired tourist or visit visas vary depending on the person’s point of departure. For example, a person traveling from Dubai is required to report to special checking stations two days prior to departure. Similarly, the procedures in the other emirates are at the airport.
If you have an expired entry permit, you’ll need to arrive at the airport at least six hours before your departure time at Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah (RAK), and Abu Dhabi airports to process your departure.
If you’re traveling from Dubai, you need to go to the checking center 48 hours before your flight’s departure time. The checking centers in Dubai are as follows:
- Al Qusais Police Station
- Civil Aviation Security Center
- Deportation Center (near Terminal 2)
Even though checking devices are installed at all UAE airports, violators in Dubai are required to go to the specified centers due to certain challenges.
People who are exempted from going to checking centers include people of determination (POD) and those under the age of 15. Violators who wish to benefit from the visa waiver order are permitted to travel from any UAE airport.
Options for Canceled Visas
According to the Federal Authority of Identity and Citizenship’s announcement, anyone with a canceled residency visa needs to change their status by acquiring a new visit or work visa while they are inside the UAE. Another option is for them to leave the country before the grace period ends.
Residents who have lost their jobs and whose employers have canceled their visas have several options. They can either change their sponsorship by securing a new job or leave the UAE within 30 days to avoid fines. The overstay fines are AED 225 for the first day and AED 25 for each subsequent day.
Another option is to ask for a tourist visa. If you do get a tourist visa, you’ll have an extra 90 days without facing fines.
The visa fee for an in-country visit will cost around AED 1,598 for a 30-day short stay and AED 1,946 for 90 days. The visa fees mentioned also include immigration status change.
In some cases, authorities have been lenient when employers or individuals request a reduction or waiver on fines. Since individuals and employers are assessed on a case-by-case basis, there have been some instances where employers have covered fines to help take the pressure off of employees.
Visa Regulations During the Pandemic
According to an official statement, individuals with residence visas or entry permits that expired during the pandemic (March 1, 2020), had their fines waived when they exit the country. All they needed was a valid passport and an airline ticket.
Holders of expired tourist or visit visas, on the other hand, must arrive at the airport a minimum of six hours before their departure time to avoid paying fines.
Secure Your Insurance with Pacific Prime Dubai
As an expat living in a foreign country, securing an insurance plan that works for you is crucial to gain access to quality private healthcare. Whilst employers will provide expats with a healthcare plan, the plan may not cover things you want covered such as dental and maternity care.
Securing your own plan ensures that you have coverage for the things that really matter to you. This is where Pacific Prime Dubai can help.
Whether you’re looking for expat health insurance, short-term health insurance, or other types of insurance plans, Pacific Prime Dubai is happy to help. As an international health insurance broker with over 20 years of experience in the industry, our experts can help you find the right policy.
Contact us to receive a free consultation or an obligation-free plan comparison today.
You can also stay up to date on the latest information by reading our articles for expats in the UAE.
- An Expat’s Guide to Pregnancy in The UAE - 3rd November 2023
- What You Can Do if Your UAE Visa is Expired or Canceled - 25th October 2023
- What is the Average Cost of Healthcare & Health Insurance for Expats in Dubai? - 4th October 2023