Wednesday 03 July 2019
From July 15 to September 15 each year
Major General Al-Rashidi: Facilities support UAE’s competitiveness as a leading destination in the area of Family Tourism
Submitting requests via ICA’s applications, UAE National Carriers, Travel Agencies and Hotels
Starting from the next Monday corresponding to 15 July, ICA initiates its facilities related to exempting the foreign tourists’ companions under 18 years who visit UAE from the tourist entry visa fees. This is pursuant to the Cabinet Decree issued in July 2018, which stipulates for granting such exemption to this category during the period from July 15 until September 15 every year.
The exemption, which includes facilities and valuable incentives, covers both sons and daughters under the age of 18, provided being accompanied by parents or either of them, who come to visit UAE with a tourism visa, regardless of the visa validity, i.e. whether it is short or long.
ICA invited the tourists who are coming to UAE or those who are planning to visit UAE during this summer to benefit from this exemption, which reduces the amounts to be incurred by the heads of families, especially big ones, as these costs are often a key factor for choosing the family tourist destination.
Major General Saeed Rakan Al Rashidi, Acting Director-General for Foreigners’ Affairs and Ports at ICA, illustrated that tourists can apply for tourism visa issuance through ICA’s smart application (ICA UAE E-channels) under the category of (Family Tourism Visa) or via its website (www.ica.gov.ae) via the link Smart Channels for Citizenship and Residency. Applications can also be submitted to UAE National Carriers (Emirates Airlines, Etihad Airways, Flydubai, and Air Arabia) and the licensed Travel Agencies, provided buying tickets from their offices, and through the hotels in UAE, based on reservation therein.
He stated that ICA issues two kinds of tourism visas, a short visa for 30 days for AED 200 for each visa, and it can be renewed twice for 30 days each time, and a long visa for 90 days for AED 550 for each visa, and can be
renewed twice for 30 days each time. As per visa extension fees, it is AED 600 for each extension.
Major General Al Rashidi added that the families desiring to benefit from the visa fees exemption should submit their requests through ICA’s E-Systems, by selecting the category of (Family Tourism Visa). They should enter the parents’ data, and add children along with their data via the system. Applicants will then receive a notification during the period of applying facilities, that their sons or daughters under the age of 18 are exempted from the visa fees.
He further noted that these facilities contribute to supporting UAE competitiveness as a leading destination in family tourism and attracting visitors and families from all over the world to enjoy historical monuments, heritage, and cultural and entertainment activities, and fascinating beaches, as well as the world-class hotel and tourist services, and sports, artistic and family events throughout the year.
Al Rashidi also confirmed that ICA directed all its employees working in UAE ports to be keen on making UAE visitors happy and providing them with distinguished services. They should give priority to facilitating procedures and completing transactions as soon as possible, and they should receive visitors with a welcoming smile, especially that they are considered the main front of the State and the first window through which tourists are introduced to the civil and human development in UAE, and where their first impressions on the Emirati people and their openness to the world’s cultures and peoples.
It’s worth noting that the diversity of the tourist products in UAE provides multiple options for family tourism. These include air-conditioned theme parks, aqua parks, and beach and resort tourism, along with the shopping centers, where the commercial traffic and the associated entertainment activities are noticeable.