Visa-seekers aged under 18 exempted from medical insurance

DUBAI — Visa-seekers under 18 years of age are exempted from the medical insurance rule, the Deputy Director of Dubai Naturalization and Residency Department (DNRD), Brigadier Obeid Muheir bin Suroor said yesterday.

By A Staff Reporter

Published: Wed 30 Jul 2008, 1:29 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 6:19 PM

Ahead of the new visa rules coming into effect today, Brig Bin Suroor yesterday followed up the switching over of DNRD services from the previous electronic system to the new software at all the air, land and sea exits.

A team of 44 IT section employees of DNRD was assigned the task of supervising and keeping a track of the transition to the new system. Another task force comprising high officials has been formed to answer the enquiries of individuals, companies and PROs on the new visa rules.

Brig Bin Suroor also monitored the transition at midnight yesterday at Dubai International Airport (DIA). He instructed the immigration staff at the airport to facilitate the entry of the members of the same families of 33 countries (eligible for entry permits at the airport) all at the same time before shifting to the new system.

"People entering Dubai airport before 12 midnight were subject to the old visa rule. Entries to the country after 12 midnight were subject to the new visa rule."

Under the new rule, visas issued to nationals of 33 countries would now be valid for 30 days, instead of the previous 60 days.

He noted that big tourism companies had until August 7 to start specifying their tourism visa quotas.

Brig Bin Suroor yesterday presided over a meeting of more than 200 PROs of companies dealing in trading, real estate, contracting and engineering. The meeting at the Police Officers Club in Garhoud was held to explain and clarify the new ministerial rule and answer the PROs' enquiries.

PROs, who had been complaining that they were not given any circular detailing the new visa rules and procedures for application, appeared more informed on the new entry permit procedures after the meeting.

Speaking to Khaleej Times, a number of PROs said the new visa was expensive, while many still were unaware of some details of the new visa rule. They blamed it on the lack of special and dedicated publications that could give a clear picture to the public.

Shareef, PRO in a contracting company, said, "They are talking about the new rule to the newspapers, TVs and radios. But what if we don't have time to read or to listen to the radio or TV news. I think there needs to be more awareness about it. All that I am aware of is that they have increased the cost of visas."

For Shareef, the insurance rule and the Dh1,000 deposit are going to increase the burden on the people. He thinks the new procedures might affect some people as they would be reluctant to bring in their relatives on visit visas.

Moustapha, a PRO for Al Banna Group, noted that the new rule has come as a shock to everybody. "It is costly and added to the burden on the companies and individuals alike. Previously, a two-month visit visa, for example, used to cost Dh260. Now, the one-month visit visa costs Dh620 apart from the insurance and the deposit. Such being the expenses I think people might be less motivated to invite their near and dear ones to the UAE."

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