Boon for families - GulfToday

Boon for families

5-year UAE tourist visa

The 5-year tourist visa will further enhance UAE's potential for international tourism.

The five year tourist visa is a great boon for expats residing in the UAE that have family members and friends, who make frequent visits to the country. Besides the initiative will also give tourism a vital boost as it will allow tourists to enter the country hassle-free several times during the course the visa validity (“UAE Cabinet approves 5-year multi-entry tourist visa,” Jan.6, Gulf Today).

While the UAE cabinet’s decision is in sync with the objective of strengthening the country’s position as a global tourist destination, the long-term visa will be of immense help to families who sponsor their loved ones to the UAE on a regular basis.

I know of several of my friends and colleagues who bring their parents to the UAE from India. Of course the existing visit visa process is not cumbersome but it is still a process. This long-term visa initiative will do away with that. I also read that a visitor may be able to stay in the country for six months at a go. That will be a great advantage.

Prior to this initiative, tourists could enter the country on a multiple-entry visa which was limited to 90 days, depending on the nationality. Which meant a fresh visa was required if the visitor chose to extend his or her stay.

With the Expo 2020 a few months away, this long-term visa will make it very convenient for travellers to make repeated visit during the Expo. Considering that around 21 million visitors visit UAE annually, most of them visiting Dubai, the move will greatly enhance the tourism profile of the emirate.

While Dubai will be in focus because of Expo 2020, I feel, lesser visited emirates like Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah, will also get a much needed tourism boost, thanks to this novel initiative.

Great going UAE. All credit to the visionary leadership.

Ralph R
By email