As the holiday season approaches, families eyeing a vacation in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have a reason to celebrate.

The UAE is encouraging family visits by waiving the visa fee for children under 18 as part of its family group tourist visa initiative, while adults will incur the standard fees.

According to a Khaleej Times report, this promotion is accessible via certified travel agencies within and outside the UAE.

Although the visa for children is free, agencies might charge a processing fee ranging from 80 dirhams (approximately Rs 1,812) to 120 dirhams (around Rs 2,266).

Families must provide a copy of their passport and a passport-sized photograph to apply for a visa that is valid for either 30 or 60 days, with the possibility of an extension from within the UAE.

Subair Thekepurathvalappil, a senior manager at Regal Tours Worldwide, informed Khaleej Times, “While families can renew their visas without leaving the country, a full visa fee is applicable for children upon extension, and the in-country renewal is not complimentary.”

For adults, the visa fees are as follows:

  • A 30-day visa ranges from 350 dirhams (Rs 6,800) to 500 dirhams (Rs 11,334).
  • A 60-day visa ranges from 500 dirhams to 650 dirhams (Rs 14,734), with additional service charges, including insurance, which can be between 130 dirhams (Rs 2,946) and 170 dirhams (Rs 3,853).

This visa scheme, which was introduced two years ago, is part of a broader effort to position the UAE as a prime vacation spot for families. The country’s tourism sector is poised for growth with the government rolling out various visitor incentives.

Dubai International Airport has already seen a bustling first half of 2023, with 41.6 million travelers, surpassing its pre-pandemic numbers. Abu Dhabi International Airport also reported a significant influx of over 10 million passengers during the same period.