A Guide to Starting Hospitality and Tourism Ventures in the UAE

Planning to start a tourism venture in the UAE? Being the land of record-breaking wonders and a flamboyant lifestyle, the UAE is a global hub for tourists. The shimmering skyline, serene beaches, finest restaurants, and state-of-the-art architecture are just a few of the factors that attract tourists from around the globe to this fascinating country. The hospitality and tourism business is one of the high-performing sectors in the country and offers a wide array of opportunities to investors and entrepreneurs.  All these make starting a tourism business setup in the UAE a fair bet.

Let’s understand the process of starting a business in Dubai and how it can take you to greater heights in your entrepreneurial journey.

How to start a tourism business in the UAE?

Before starting your business in the UAE, you need to be aware of the process, the local market, and the rules and regulations in the region. The following are the important steps involved in the hospitality business setup process.

  1. Obtain the suitable tourism license

To begin with, you will need an appropriate tourism license so that you can offer your services legally. There are three different tourism licenses in the UAE.

  • Inbound tourism license: This license allows businesses to conduct domestic tours and provide visa services and transportation.
  • Outbound tourism license: With this license, a company can organize travel and tourism activities outside the UAE.
  • Travel agent license: It enables a company to perform the role of a vendor and offer services including selling tickets, booking hotels, and organizing tours.
  1. Register your company name

Choosing a company name for your business setup in the UAE is not as simple as you think. You need to follow the naming regulations in the country to avoid any bottlenecks in getting approval for the name you have chosen for your business.

  1. Complete the visa processes

You will need a UAE residency visa to live and work in the UAE. If you have the right support, this process is pretty straightforward and fast. As per the law, there is a medical and fitness test to obtain a UAE residency visa. Once you have the visa, you can sponsor your family and domestic helpers. Also, once you set up your business, you will need to apply for employment visas when you are expanding your team by hiring talent.

  1. Open a bank account

The final step will be opening a corporate bank account for your business to make and receive payments.

Documents required for starting tourism business

Most commonly, you will need the following documents to start a tourism business in the UAE:

  • Passports of all shareholders
  • Trade name registration
  • Brief descriptions of all business activities
  • Certificate of work qualification

Advantages of starting a business in tourism sector in UAE

Starting your business in the hospitality and tourism sector in the UAE promises several benefits. Let’s have a look at a few of them:

  • Top tourist destination

The UAE is undoubtedly at the top of the bucket list of tourists across the globe. As tourists flock to this country every year, the opportunities in the tourism sector are also on the rise.

  • A thriving industry

Being a top tourist destination, the UAE’s tourism sector witnesses steady growth. The country also has several projects in the pipeline to boost the tourism industry which reinforces the profitability of businesses in this sector.

  • Business-friendly environment

The UAE government is known for its hassle-free legal frameworks and business-friendly policies aimed at making the lives of businessmen easier.

  • Tax benefits

UAE allows foreign owners to have 100% business ownership and provides competitive tax for businesses. This ensures a stress-free life and more profits for your business.

  • High quality of life

A major enticing factor about the UAE is its luxurious lifestyle. Having your business in this region also gives you the privilege to live in the go-to tourist destination of people around the world.

The hospitality and tourism sector in the UAE is booming as the government is consistently implementing projects to revolutionize this industry. With the increasing number of tourists every year, more and more entrepreneurs are motivated to invest in the tourism sector of the region. With the right guidance and support, you can start a rewarding entrepreneurial journey in the field of hospitality and tourism in the UAE.


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