There are around 11 countries offering residency programs to remote workers including Germany, Spain, Mexico, Bermuda, and Barbados and now UAE’s Dubai joins the mix.
Can it compete in attracting work from home (WFH) employees?
Residency visas for WFH staff
Dubai has launched a new residency program that allows expats remote working professionals to relocate with family and live in the emirate while continuing to work remotely for their overseas employer.
The renewable relocation program will be valid for a year at a time, costing $287 but must include medical insurance with valid UAE coverage.
This residency permit allows WFH staff to enjoy benefits similar to that of other residents as well as schooling options for their children.
To apply, one must show proof of employment from their current employer with a one-year contract validity, and a minimum of $5,000 monthly salary with bank statements of 3 prior paychecks.
If the applicant is a company owner, then they must show proof of ownership of the company for at least a year, along with an average monthly income of $5,000 supported by three months of bank statements.
Interested parties can apply directly online.
In September, Dubai launched a new five-year renewable Retirement Visa that allows resident expatriates and foreigners aged 55 and over to live within the emirate too.
Lewis Allsopp, CEO of Allsopp & Allsopp told AMEinfo:
“The initiative gives overseas residents the opportunity to experience Dubai without the risk of leaving a secure job in their home country. Oversees remote workers will be searching for properties to reside in for themselves and potentially their family too. This, teamed with the expats moving to Dubai for new opportunities after job losses, should be a great boost to the Dubai rental market.”
Countries offering WFH residency program
Some destinations, like Barbados and Bermuda, have recently launched remote visa programs for incoming visitors, while other countries, like Portugal and Germany, have had similar arrangements in place for years, according to Business Insider.
Antigua and Barbuda just announced a new Nomad Digital Residence program that will allow remote workers to live and work there for up to two years.
Workers must prove that they earn at least $50,000 a year, according to the program’s website.
In August, the Republic of Estonia officially launched its new Digital Nomad Visa, which it says is the first of its kind in the European Union.
Remote workers there must also meet a minimum gross income requirement of $4,130 per month for six months preceding their application.
Dubai is attractive for remote workers
Dubai, and the UAE, have been recognized for setting a global model for dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic with robust safety and hygiene protocols that enabled the reopening of most sectors and destination offerings across the city.
The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) awarded Dubai the Safe Travels Stamp in acknowledgment of its COVID-19 precautionary measures. The emirate also introduced the ‘Dubai Assured’ stamp to certify that establishments have implemented all public health protocols.
Dubai’s No 1 global ranking in e-infrastructure in the latest Digital Quality of Life (DQL) survey validates the emirate’s exceptional digital infrastructure and its value proposition for start-ups, entrepreneurs, and SMEs.
Dubai was recently listed as the second-best among 60 global cities for remote working jobs by the CEOWORLD magazine.