Dubai International Financial Centre launches online visa system, amends rules


The DIFC (Dubai International Financial Centre) has unveiled a new online visa service along with an updated fee schedule and rules have been reformed pertaining to secondment permit applications and their supporting documents.

Hereafter, an online system will process visas. Moreover, a new service, E-GDRFA, was launched by the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs on 1 November.

With this system, the following new changes will come into place:

To access online entry permits, one has to go through the client portal of DIFC. Upon being issued electronically, entry permits may be printed and mailed to applicants for entering the UAE.

A complete UAE ID registration and a medical test must be undertaken by visa applicants who want to transfer between DIFC companies. Following that, visas with a validity of three years will be issued to applicants, only if they continue their employment with the new employer.

If applicants change personal details when they want to renew employment visas or transfer visas from one passport to another, their applications won’t be entertained. Applicants can change personal details, including their job titles, only after authorities issue a different ‘visa amendment’ application.

According to, henceforth, it won’t be necessary for applicants to provide their Emirates ID and original passports when they cancel their employment visas. The DIFC client portal will provide information that visas have been cancelled.

As revisions have been made to service fees in accordance with industry standards, most services and visa categories and services will see their fees being hiked. Applicants can get information about the new structure on DIFC website.

As rules have been changed on secondment permits, employers will now be allowed to apply for secondment permits even if the employee’s work visa does not have the validity for the entire duration of secondment. But companies that will do this, must promise to renew the employment visa of the employee at the right time, failing which secondment permits will not be considered valid.

It will be made possible to issue secondment permits, which are valid for three months, six months or one year, and if they expire, they may be renewed.

It is mandatory for supporting documentation that is submitted visa applications to be either in Arabic or English. When original documents are not in one of these languages, it will be accepted only if they are translated into Arabic, and not into English.

If you are looking to travel to Dubai, get in touch with Y-Axis, a leading company for immigration services, to apply for a visa.

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