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How to Get Your Event Management License in Dubai & the UAE

The UAE, and in particular Dubai, is one of the event capitals of the world. Events are a huge business here. So much so that Dubai World Trade Centre events and exhibitions alone are estimated to contribute some USD 3.3bn to the economy.

Within that, the emirate’s event management industry is understandably booming. As of 2016, the Dubai event management industry was estimated to be worth USD 45m with an annual growth since 2013 of 25%.

This upward trajectory is only set to continue with Expo 2020 on the horizon – the biggest event of its kind to be held in the Middle East. Expo 2020 is expected to attract 25 million visitors to the UAE during its six-month run. The event is expected to feature over three million delegates and attendees taking part in some 350 events and seminars.

For event management companies, this represents a huge opportunity. And there’s more good news: starting an event planning business in the UAE is both quick and easy.

How to Start an Event Management Company in Dubai and the UAE

When starting an event planning business in the UAE, the first step is to apply for your event management license. This license lets you conduct a wide-range of activities such as event production, hospitality management, event promotion, and more.

You are required to list your business activities when making your license application, however, so it’s important that you have a clear idea of exactly what business you wish to conduct. A company formation expert can work with you at this stage to ensure your license application is accurate and complete.

Once you have decided on the activities you wish to list on your license, it is time to submit your application. You can do this on the Dubai mainland via the Department of Economic Development (DED) or direct to one of the UAE’s many free zones.

Free zones are a straightforward and cost-effective way to start an events company and offer many attractive benefits including 0% personal and corporate income tax and 100% exemption from customs tax. Also, unlike in many other countries, UAE free zone businesses also benefit from the freedom of being able to repatriate all invested capital and profits. There are also no foreign exchange controls or currency restrictions.

Free zones also offer a number of other specific benefits. Take Creative City Fujairah Free Zone for example. Creative City Fujairah’s event coordinator license fees are affordable by most standards and there is no requirement to put down any share capital.

Then there are the many benefits of the emirate of Fujairah itself. Home to a thriving business landscape with the infrastructure to match, Fujairah is incredibly well connected – just one and a half hours from downtown Dubai and in close proximity to several of the UAE’s international airports.

If you are looking to get your company license in Dubai, Dubai free zone visa, or the cheapest trade license in the UAE. Then our team can help.

Event Management License Cost

The start-up costs for an event planning business will depend on a number of factors such as business activities, and company size and location. In most cases, however, event management start-up costs are usually low.

Should you choose to set up in Creative City Fujairah Free Zone, for example, you can expect to pay in the region of AED 15,000 to secure your event management license. As there is no requirement to take on office space with an events license there are few other costs to consider.

What’s more, Creative City Fujairah’s flexi-desk package – which affords entrepreneurs the use of business facilities such as desk space, mail services and internet and phone use – comes with eligibility for up to six employee visas.

The Ease of Starting Your Own Event Planning Business

Starting your event planning business in a free zone such as Creative City Fujairah is incredibly straightforward with minimal upfront costs. Should you wish, you can even sign up for a virtual office package which includes a prestigious address, great facilities, access to a professional assistant and much more.

The free zone is also home to a modern, fully equipped business centre that provides round the clock service. These services include meeting room access, fast speed internet access through Wi-Fi and LAN, printing and copying services, café access, receptionist cover, telephone and fax services, and a maintenance and cleaning service.

What’s more, when you start your event management business in Creative City Fujairah, you can expect to receive your company documentation and be ready to trade within days.

Event management licensing timeline:

Day 1 – Submit application forms along with the signed Articles of Incorporation and Lease Agreement (if applicable). Pre-approval commences at this stage.

Day 2 – Your dedicated phone number is activated and the details are provided to you by the business centre along with details of your address.

Day 2 – Trade License released by the Free Zone and scanned copy of the original will be sent to you via email. You may start operating your company from this point.

Day 3 – Original Trade License, Articles of Incorporation, Certificate of Incorporation, Share Certificate, Lease Agreement (if applicable) and Company Stamp are available for collection.

Day 8 – Pre-approval is granted. Company immigration card application will be submitted to immigration for processing.

Day 15 – Company electronic immigration card is issued.

Day 16 – Trade License/Immigration Card is registered with the E-Channel system.

Day 16 – Complete and submit visa application forms and supporting documents and passport photos.

Day 20 – Print your coloured Electronic Entry Visa and carry out a change of status.

It is important to note that these deadlines can only be met if your event management license application is error-free and complete at the time of submission. That’s why it’s a good idea to work with a company formation specialist such as Creative City Fujairah when forming a new business in the UAE. We are a team of company registration professionals who are passionate about bringing the dreams of aspiring entrepreneurs and SMEs to life.

We are BIZ, the official Dubai representative office of Fujairah Creative City Free Zone. If you are looking to open your company in Dubai, get a free zone license, or start a small business in Dubai, then we can help. From visa applications (including UAE investor visas) to all the necessary admin tasks, we handle it all – leaving you free to get on with your business.


A city full of possibilities only during Expo 2020! Explore them with your free zone license for only AED 14,999

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Start up with the flexible packages starting from AED 13,500 and scale your SME up to 15 visas without renting any physical office space. Get in touch with us to create your future.

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