set up as a freelancer
If you are considering a career as a freelancer within the media, production, and entertainment industries in the UAE, then twofour54’s freelance visa is the way to go.
When you join twofour54 as a freelancer, you will access a community of 600 local, regional and international media partners and a myriad of opportunities for collaboration with some of the biggest names in our industry.
freelance visa benefits
twofour54 offers a host of exclusive services and benefits including a dedicated freelance relations team to help you get the most out of your experience. They will help guide you on facilitating all essential paperwork, such as the residence visa, Emirates ID and getting your medical insurance sorted.
They will promote your profile and work throughout our community to give you a helping hand as you kick-start your freelancing journey.
There has never been a better time to join our freelance program. Here are some of the benefits and services you’ll enjoy:
- Waived freelance licence fees for two years from the date of issue*.
- Residency visa valid for 2 years.
- Connect events where you can network with our community and government entities.
- More work briefs on our online Connect portal.
- Access to over 600+ world-class media and entertainment companies.
- Talent and development training programmes
- Youth community of 15,000+ members
- Dedicated team to support you with all your government and logistics needs.
- Click here to view the list of Creative Zone – Abu Dhabi’s freelancer license activities.
become a freelancer in 3 easy steps
At twofour54, getting your freelance licence is as easy as 1-2-3:
step 1: apply
We’ve made it quick and easy to submit your application online. All you need is:
- Copy of your passport
- Passport-size digital photo
- Up-to-date CV
- 2 professional references (with contact details)
- Work offer or a letter of intent from a twofour54 business partner
If you don’t have a work offer or letter of intent, don’t worry. You can submit a business plan that includes:
- Personal profile—your personal and professional background and work experience
- Work—work you have done within the Creative Zone - Abu Dhabi, or work you plan to carry out, with your contacts as references
- Liabilities—financial overview of your expected income
We’ll review your application and contact you within 3 working days with feedback. Once your application is approved, we’ll arrange a meeting to complete the licensing and residency process.
step 2: process your documents with us
Next, you’ll need to sign and return your visa application, including the required fee.
step 3: start freelancing
You’ll be issued a sole proprietor’s business licence and an employment visa valid for two years (for non-GCC nationals), which is convertible into a residence visa.
And that’s it – you’re done! Now you can focus on making your freelance business a success at twofour54.
Once you start, you’re welcome to use all our facilities, discuss ideas with other freelancers and partner companies at networking events, and find briefs to secure work in the Briefing Room.
frequently asked questions
To avoid fines, we always recommend renewing your residency, Emirates ID and health insurance plan on time. Please review the individual fines section to get more details about the fines for each case. For up to date information on the current fees, please email Tawasol@twofour54.com.
The total cost of a freelance work permit is AED 3,538.5 including VAT. However, this doesn’t include the mandatory health insurance fees. As mentioned above, health insurance packages start from around AED 3,000 and vary according to the customer’s age and existing health conditions.
Yes. In order to get a residency visa, you will need to purchase a health insurance policy that is approved by the Health Authority of Abu Dhabi and Abu Dhabi Immigration. twofour54 can help you obtain your health insurance through Daman, or you can buy coverage from any of the approved providers that are listed here.
Provided we have received all the required documents, forms and references from referees, it should take no more than five business days to get the business license pre-approved.
A “Sole Proprietor License” is a license from the Creative Media Authority, which allows you as an individual to work in your personal capacity from the Creative Zone as a media professional. The Sole Proprietor License will specify the activities the freelancer may carry out from the Creative Zone. As a twofour54 freelancer, you are required to obtain a Sole Proprietor License and residency visa.
To fulfil our licensing requirements and become a freelancer, your residency visa must be sponsored by the twofour54 free zone. Please note that this does not apply to GCC citizens.
At twofour54, we provide freelance licenses in more than 60 media-related categories, spanning everything from pre-production, production and post-production, to PR, marketing, gaming and creative design. You can apply for up to three categories at no additional cost, provided that you have sufficient references for them all.
It is a letter from a twofour54 partner company that demonstrates their intention to work with you on future projects. it is intended to support your freelance application but it does not have to be a formal employment commitment.
twofour54’s dedicated freelance relations team can connect you with other partner companies who may need your services in the future, and therefore will be able to provide a letter of intent. Alternatively, you can submit a detailed business plan that outlines how you intend to operate within twofour54, who you will be approaching for work., and why your skillsets will add value to the free zone. Please see more details about our application process here.
Our dedicated customer care team will advise you on whether you can sponsor your family once you have become a registered freelancer.
No, you are only licensed to work within the Abu Dhabi free zone and with registered twofour54 partner companies.
Our Tawasol team can help you buy health insurance through Daman, our partner company. Policy costs vary according to the plan selected, and other factors like gender and age. Packages generally start from around AED 3,000 for one year.
The twofour54 freelance license permits you to work from within the twofour54 media zone and with twofour54 licensed companies. You can also lease state-of-the-art office spaces at Yas Creative Hub and work remotely from overseas when needed.
Yes, you can open a personal bank account and our dedicated customer care team are on hand to assist you with this if needed. You may be required to submit a contract or proof of upcoming work for a period of at least three months, and other supporting documentation.
Our freelance relations department works to showcase the work of twofour54 freelancers and connect them with as many potential clients as possible. By using our vast network of over 600 international and local companies, and hosting regular networking events, we are able to source plenty of exciting opportunities for our freelancers.
The only costs that you will incur are the health insurance cancellation fee and the visa cancellation fees.
Yes, you may reside anywhere in the UAE.