Freelancing is a cost-effective and popular choice for one-person businesses in the UAE. To become a freelancer, you will require a license from a Free Zone Authority (FZA), such as the Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ). The freelancer license grants you the ability to operate as a professional registered under your legal name, unlike a company or brand.

This permit is designed for individuals who specialize in spheres such as technology, media, education, consultancy, and filmography. Typically, eligible freelancers offer their unique talents, creativity, or administrative skills. Lastly, it is possible to freelance while employed if you can provide an NOC from your employer or sponsor.

Which activities legally fall under freelancing?

Some of the activities include:

  • Acting
  • Photography
  • Audio engineering
  • Commentary
  • Lighting
  • Designing
  • Public Relations
  • Web development
  • Educational advice
  • Journalism
  •  Writing
  • Brand consultancy
  • Composing
  • Directing
  • Writing
  • Influencing
  • IT
  • Coaching
  • Film directing
  • Animating
  • Filming (crew)
  • Content creation
  • Critique
  •  Analytics
  • Translating
  • Telecommunications
  • Researching
  • Editing
  • Arts
  • Choreography
  • Copywriting
  • Event planning
  • Marketing
  • Styling
  • Data Science
  • Training clients

What are the benefits of a RAKEZ freelance permit?

  • 100% ownership & control of your business
  • Affordability, when compared to other business licenses
  • Access to modern business centers, Flexi-desk options and, client offices (as per agreement)
  • Invoicing via your bank account, rather than a corporate one
  • Fully flexible schedule, no geographical restrictions
  • Renewable UAE Residence Visa
  • Ability to freelance while employed
  • No auditing requirements
  • If you are making under AED 187,000 annually VAT registration is not required,

(Between AED 187,000-375,000 VAT registration is advised and above AED375,000 it is required)

What documents must be presented to obtain the permit?

You will require the following:


  1. An attested educational certificate, diploma or credentials.

These documents must be relevant to the freelancer’s field of expertise. The attestation process is duly notarized and conducted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA). Luckily, our range of PRO services includes certificate/diploma attestation.

  1. A full portfolio, CV, or other relevant document proving at least 3 years of professional activity within the outlined field of expertise.
  2. A passport copy
  3. Visa copy (if available) or NOC from the employer or sponsor (if under residency visa & work permit)
  4. Reference letter from your local or international bank

Should I be aware of the terms and conditions of this permit?

RAKEZ defines a freelancer as a licensed sole proprietor as per Article 9. Here is a sample of a freelance permit’s terms and conditions:

  • The freelancer is a professional who will operate as an independent contractor and in the form of a sole practitioner to undertake the permitted business from RAKEZ (or any other free zone).
  • The freelancer shall conduct business in his or her birth name as opposed to a company name
  • It is optional for UAE residents (GCC & non-GCC nationals) to receive a visa sponsorship for an additional fee*
  • The existing sponsor’s Notice of Consent (NOC) must be provided if the client opts for a permit without a visa.
  • Freelancers are not eligible to open a corporate bank account
  • Freelancers are liable for any debts or obligations they may incur when carrying out their work
  • Freelancers are not eligible to appoint any staff or obtain any additional visas under the permit
  • The freelancer is limited to 1 activity per permit (contact us for details of having up to 3 activities permitted by one license)

Can I receive freelance permits from other Free Zones?

While RAKEZ is one of the best choices, some of our clients are more suited for the packages offered by other free zones in the UAE, these include:

How can I get the cheapest and fastest freelance permit in the UAE?

Unfortunately finding the correct free zone and doing all of the paperwork takes a lot of time and effort. Luckily, we offer fast and affordable solutions to acquiring your freelance permit in the UAE!

For more information regarding the freelance licensing price-range, more eligible activities, package options, and alternative solutions to your business,

Contact your go-to market-entry specialists and business consultants via

Email: [email protected]

Call or Whatsapp: +971 50 911 0516

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We look forward to advising and assisting you in procuring your permit and visa.

Disclaimer: Please note that this information should not be considered the ultimate guidelines, and one should consult with our experts for advice or assistance.