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A Comprehensive Guide to Low Cost Business Setup in Dubai, UAE

low cost business setup in dubai uae
Table of Contents

Dubai offers many opportunities for entrepreneurs and business owners to incorporate a company with low capital investment. Setting up a business in Dubai brings various incentives, such as world-class infrastructure and tax benefits. This guide discusses everything you need for low cost business setup in Dubai, including processes, costs, tips, and expert assistance.

How Much Does it Cost to Start a Small Business in Dubai?

A budget-friendly, low-cost business licence in Dubai can obtained at the cost of AED 12,000*. This is the cost you bear for a business licence, with one shareholder, a lifetime residency visa, a flexi office lease, etc.

Dubai has become a hotspot for international businesses looking to scale in the UAE, but many people think that the city is not accessible to every business owner because of the high business setup costs. But it is not completely true, as many free zones give attractive packages like the above.

It is hard to calculate a fixed setup cost as it varies based on location, legal form, and business activities. However, here is a typical breakdown of what these costs usually look like.

  • Business Licence with 0 Visa starts from AED 6,500 per year
  • Service provider fee starts from AED 2,000
  • Rentals depend on office space and facilities, which can go from 0 to the client’s requirements

Registering a company in Free Zones costs slightly less for multiple reasons, one of which is that most Freezones offer the flexi desk option within the licence package itself.

On the Mainland, you have much better market access, but diligence is necessary for business compliance. 

To reduce overall costs without sacrificing in any area requires careful planning and finding the right balance.

Simple Steps for Low-Cost Business Setup in Dubai

The process of low-cost business setup in Dubai takes 2-4 weeks. The process includes business licence issuance, security approval, immigration registration, lifetime investor visa, medical, and biometrics. Engaging a business setup consultant can expedite the procedure.

For a budget-friendly company formation in Dubai, you can follow these steps:

Select Location

Selecting the right jurisdiction can significantly reduce costs. For instance, you can set up a general trading company in Freezone for as little as AED 12,000. There are certain limitations, of course.

Also, keep in mind that Free zones allow 100% ownership while mainland entities enable access to local markets.

Choose Business Activities

You have to select the business activity as per your business requirements.

Select a Unique Trade Name

Finalise a business name that is not used by any other business. Choose a simple name that does not sound offensive or vulgar.

Get Initial Approvals

The next step is to work on documentation and get approvals from respected authorities. Use business consultant services to save costs on documentation and get quick approvals. They will submit an application to the Department of Economic Development (Mainland) or Free Zone authorities on your behalf and ensure you get approval the first time.

Hiring an in-house team or trying to do everything on your own can cost more in the long term.

Obtain Trade Licence

Get your trade licence. It is one of the most significant steps. Avyanco can assist with this and ensure you get your trade licence without rejection or delays.

Apply for Visa

Apply for establishment cards and immigration/visas for shareholders & staff.

Additional Tips to Save Costs on Business Setup in UAE

You have learned how to achieve a low cost business setup in Dubai.

However, you can still take a few more steps to ensure you save more.

  • If you do not need office space, do not choose one; instead, opt for flexi-desks and save a big chunk of rental costs.
  • Instead of a physical address, consider virtual office addresses to reduce overheads.
  • Take a professional package for the entire business setup process, covering visas, etc., rather than a fragmented approach.
  • Ensure that all your documents, including contracts & permits, are legally compliant to avoid penalties.

What is the Best Business to Start in Dubai with Low Investment?

There are several businesses that require very little investment, and still, they tap into Dubai’s high-growth sectors. These businesses require you to have a sharp business acumen instead of huge investments.

Some of the most lucrative ventures you can launch on a shoestring budget include:

Dropshipping and Ecommerce Stores

Dropshipping and eCommerce options have huge potential for growth with significant margins. Dropshipping business in Dubai is one of the best low-cost business options as you do not need any warehouse or other liabilities.


Starting a consulting business has a high margin potential with a low-cost setup. If you are qualified, you can opt for various consultancy services options, such as legal, business, and IT consultations.

Digital Marketing Agencies

Digital marketing agencies can work remotely and without any dedicated office space. They require minimum investment but have high growth potential. 

Human Resource Outsourcing

HR and recruiting services also fall in the category of best low-cost investments in Dubai. Many businesses require help with recruiting new candidates and often outsource it. 

Educational Technology Platforms

Another venture that does not require significant investment and can be done with a completely remote team. All you need is talented individuals to teach students and a good developer to create an education platform with a good user interface.

Trading/General Trading

Trading or general trading can be counted as a low-cost business setup option when you choose to start a business in Dubai Freezone.

Best Business You Can Start in Dubai with Small Investment

Low-Cost Business Setup in Dubai with Avyanco

Starting a low cost business in the UAE has its challenges. You also have to incur compliance costs, low which can be high based on your business activities. To ensure a low-cost business setup with a low compliance cost, you need expert guidance. 

Partnering with a top consultancy firm like Avyanco can help cut costs and ensure smooth business setup and operations. We have multiple package options to ensure you get the most done in the most affordable way. We assist with documentation, visas, virtual office solutions, and compliance while trying to keep the costs as low as possible.

Avyanco Business Setup, with its team of expert business consultants, helps you with setting up a company in a budget-friendly manner. Let’s connect today.


About the Author


Jashvantkumar Prajapati

(Founder and CEO of Avyanco Group of Companies; Business Setup Consultancy, Avyanco Tax and Accounting LLC, and Avyanco Auditing LLC.)

He keeps a varied portfolio with core expertise in investment management, corporate structuring, commercial law, business consultancy, lead management, business planning and market research. Aspire to help potential entrepreneurs and investors to come ahead and form their companies in highly emerging economies like UAE.