Resident returning to the UAE? Here’s the approval form

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Dubai residence visa holders flying back to the UAE must have approval…

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If you are a Dubai residence visa holder returning to Dubai, you will still need approval from the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA). All other UAE residence visa holders do not have to apply.

Even if you have previously filled out a Twajudi form or an ICA form, you will need to complete a certain form on the General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs (GDRFA) website, which is much simpler than its predecessors.

Here’s the steps you’ll need to take:

  1. You can access the form via the Emirates website, under a handy page named ‘Travel requirements for Dubai residents’
  2. But you can also access it here.
  3. You can apply for return approval as soon as you have booked your flight
  4. To apply for return approval, you’ll need your Resident File Number from your visa
  5. You must bring a copy of the GDRFA approval when you travel
  6. Every passenger flying to Dubai is required to fill in this health declaration form. The form needs to be printed, completed and handed over to Dubai Health Authority staff at arrival
  7. You no longer need to take a PCR test (within 96 hours prior to your departure) and hold a valid printed negative COVID-19 test certificate to fly into the UAE although you can still do this
  8. Upon arrival in Dubai, you can take a PCR test and you are required to quarantine at home until you receive your test results, which usually takes within 24 hours
  9. You must download the COVID19 – DXB Smart App

How to fill out the GDRFA approval form:

  1. All you’ll need to fill out the GDRFA approval form is your passport, visa and Emirates ID.
  2. Enter your visa number, country and year of birth
  3. Enter the country you’re travelling from and the port you’re arriving to (Dubai International Airport DXB)
  4. Enter your email address
  5. Upload copies of your documents – visa, passport and Emirates ID
  6. It will take you to a payment page, but don’t panic as it’s classed ‘Free of Charge’
  7. Submit your application
  8. Your application will be marked ‘under process’, for which you’ll receive an email

All other UAE residence holders

If you hold a visa from any other emirate outside of Dubai, you must obtain entry permission from the Federal Authority through uaeentry.ica.gov.ae

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