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Overstays: Why & How Not to Become One

The United Arab Emirates has been one of the most targeted destinations in the whole world for numerous years, now. Tourists have been traveling there for the ultimate experience that involves desertsskyscraperbeacheswater sportsshopping mallsskydives, and man-made islands. The UAE is known to have a bit of everything you could ever dream of. In addition to the fun and leisure, Dubai, or a number of the other Emirates have been targeted by immigrants, due to the living conditions there. People aim to find jobs and settle there. On the other hand, since UAE’s population consists of millions of immigrants, undoubtedly some eventually return to their home countries.

Coming to the UAE is not difficult. If you are just visiting, you apply for short or long-term tourist/visit visa. If you landed the job of your dreams, the status of that visit visa is changes to a residency. And, if you are already a resident and leaving, your residence visa is canceled. Nevertheless, the immigration authorities in the UAE, including Dubai (where most tourists apply their visas), are very strict when it comes to their regulations. You need to make sure that you do not, at any point, break those regulations. If you abide by the duration permitted to you by your visa, by abiding to UAE’s Zero Overstay Policy, you shall be good.

What does “Overstay” mean?

Tourist Visa

If you are visiting on a tourist visa, you are allowed to stay in the country for either 14 days30 days, or 90 days, depending on the visa you applied for. If that visa is about to expire, and you do not exit the country, you will be charged a fine for each day spent within the UAE exceeding the expiry date stated on the visa you hold. Do not take this lightly, as for the first day you overstay, you pay AED 340 (Emirati Dirham), and AED 100 for each day after that.

Note that this can only go on for a 30-days period, which is referred to as Grace Period. By “Grace” it does NOT mean that you are exempted from paying the fines. You pay the above-mentioned penalties. However, if you exceed a certain number of days (to be discussed with the supplier of your visa), you might be subjected to a criminal case, which, obviously benefits no one. Especially, if it means you could be blacklisted after that.

If you got a job and are about to get your resident visa, keep in mind that you still have to exit the country for the change of the visa status.

Resident Visa Cancellation

If you are a resident in the UAE, and decide to cancel your residency, or if your residency is terminated for any reason, you are also given a grace period of 30 days. The good news is that if you were a resident, during the grace period you are not charged any penalties of overstay. These 30 days are given to you to enable you to get your affairs in order and leave the country without being rushed.

However, if the 30 days pass and you still haven’t exited the country, then you are subject to a penalty of AED 100 for each day overstayed after your grace period. Plus, a service fee of AED 100 as you cross the border.


Resident Visa Cancellation

Be Safe!

To avoid any fines, criminal cases, or unnecessary waste of time, just be safe, plan your travel ahead, and make sure all your affairs are in order by the time you will have to leave.

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12 Comments on "Overstays: Why & How Not to Become One"

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April
Guest
April

from cancelled visa, after the grace period, is it 100 each day? not the first day only?

Eve
Guest

Hi Faatema, my daughters visit visa expired on 24th Oct as I was still waiting for my Residence visa to be stamped. What is the implication of this?

jade
Guest
jade

is it possible for the employer to file a case of absconding for not exiting the country after the 30 days grace period?

syed

Dear Jade,

The employer is liable to only impose a file on the employee if he/she hasn’t exited the country after the 30 days grace period. However, it will not be considered a case of absconding.

jade
Guest
jade

the previous employer is telling us that they filed absconding and he will not be able to get any visa in UAE. They said that his choice is only to go to jail and the go to our country. What should we do?

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