Dubai simplifies alcohol licence application process

From September, residents need only present their Emirates ID to apply for a licence

Image used for illustrative purpose. Dubai skyline.

Image used for illustrative purpose. Dubai skyline.

Getty Images

Dubai residents can now apply for a licence to purchase alcohol by presenting their Emirates ID at the emirate’s MMI and A+E stores.

Previously, applicants were obliged to present their passport and visa copies, a no objection certificate (NOC) from their employer, and tenancy agreement in order to obtain a licence, but the process has now been streamlined and become paper free.

Non-Muslim Dubai residents, who are aged 21 and over, will be able to apply in store, and receive the new licence within two to three weeks.

Tourists wishing to purchase alcohol will be able to do so by presenting their original passport and people living in Dubai who have a visa from another emirate will still need to present a NOC.

From August 31st, the existing red alcohol licence will no longer be valid, so consumers will need to pay AED 25 to convert them into the new black, smart card, and have remaining months transferred to their new licence. The cost of the licence for first time applicants remains unchanged at AED 270.

Mike Glen, Managing Director MMI – UAE & Oman said: “Getting a licence has now become so much easier. By transitioning to the new system, the amount of paperwork involved has been dramatically reduced. We’re always looking for new ways to make the shopping experience as simple as possible and keep our customers on the right side of the law.”

MMI and A+E, the emirate’s state-approved alcohol retailers, joined together to launch for customers to order alcohol online earlier this year. 

(Reporting by Imogen Lillywhite; editing by Seban Scaria)


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