Opening a bank account in Dubai: complete guide

Apr 23, 2024

Dubai, the dynamic metropolis of the United Arab Emirates, attracts numerous international residents and investors due to its thriving economy, world-class infrastructure, and business-friendly environment. If you're considering relocating or investing in Dubai, opening a local bank account is a crucial step.

  1. Opening a bank account without a residence visa:

Bank accounts are reserved exclusively for residents of the United Arab Emirates. Whether it's a personal or business account, you need to obtain a residence visa and an Emirates ID to proceed with opening a bank account. In very limited cases, it's possible to open a bank account for an offshore company. However, it's an account associated with the company, not in your own name.

  1. Obtaining residence visa for opening a bank account in Dubai:

You can obtain a residence visa by opening a mainland or freezone company that will sponsor you. You can also obtain a 10-year golden visa by investing in a business or real estate.

  1. Presence requirement in the UAE for opening a bank account:

To open an account in a physical bank, you must be present in the UAE to schedule an appointment with an advisor. For digital banks, the process can be done remotely.

  1. Key considerations for opening a bank account in Dubai:

  • Activities of your license: If you've decided to open a company and then a bank account, be mindful of the activities listed on your license. Banks in the UAE are wary of extensive activity lists with no real connection. Choose a primary activity and other activities within the same group or directly related to your business. 
  • Nationality of the applicant: Sometimes individuals with passports from regions deemed 'sensitive' may be asked for more information. Even if you face rejection, don't lose hope; with the right structure, coherent activities, and sometimes a business plan, you could still open a bank account.

Ensure your bank account opening process in Dubai is smooth and hassle-free by following these steps. Contact us for expert assistance in navigating the banking landscape in Dubai.

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