How to Migrate to USA from UAE in 2022 (Updated Guide)

Here is everything you need to know about how to migrate to USA from UAE

Feature - how to migrate to usa from uae

Moving to the United States from UAE is an exciting step! But you will need to know how to migrate to USA from UAE first.

There are plenty of opportunities in USA for those who want to move. But how do you go about it?

The process of immigration to USA from UAE is complicated if you try to figure it out on your own. With so many visa options, it is hard to know which is the most suitable for you.

But don’t worry. This Dbd immigration guide will walk you through the USA immigration process from UAE to start your new life in America. We will take you through all visa types, their purpose, and their requirements.

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How to migrate to USA from UAE?

The US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) issues a number of immigrant visas to UAE residents. Thousands of people go through the USA immigration process every year from UAE.

There are many reasons why people choose to make this move. For this reason, migrating to the United States can be daunting.

We have made it easier for you to apply for visas and move to the US by providing all information in one place. UAE residents can choose from different eligibility criteria with several visa options available.

Method 1. Employment-based visa

how to migrate to usa from uae - employement visa

An employment visa allows you to be involved in an occupation or trade in the US. UAE residents can take their spouses and children from their home country with them if granted this visa.

The employment-based immigrant visa has five sub-categories.

Who is eligible to apply for an employment visa?

The employment visa is divided into five categories that eligible UAE residents can apply for.

Such US visa categories and their eligibility criteria are as follows:

First Preference (EB-1)

Individuals with exceptional abilities and skills are eligible for this visa. You can apply if you are a professor, multinational company manager, or have an extraordinary ability.

You are more likely to be granted this visa if your achievements have gained global recognition. Experts and accomplished researchers also have a good chance of visa approval. [1]U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Servies, “Employment-Based Immigration: First Preference EB-1, … Continue reading

Second Preference (EB-2)

The second preference visa is for people holding an advanced degree. Moreover, those with incredible abilities in the fields of science, art, and business are also eligible.

You must be considerably more competent than a typical practitioner in your field. You also need to have a salary that suits your advanced expertise. [2]U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Servies, “Employment-Based Immigration: Second Preference EB-2, … Continue reading

Third Preference (EB-3)

Professionals, skilled workers with two years of experience, and unskilled workers are eligible for the E3 visa. Unskilled workers must engage in jobs requiring two years or less of training.

Fourth Preference (EB-4)

UAE residents who have assisted the US armed forces, medical graduates, and retired multinational company employees are eligible for this visa. [3]US Department of State, “Employment-Based Immigrant Visas, … Continue reading

Fifth Preference (EB-5)

The E5 visa is an investor visa. Residents in Dubai and other emirates who want to invest in the United States are eligible for this visa.

What are the documents required for an employment visa?

The US visa requires plenty of documentation to approve the visa process. Following are the documents needed for an employment visa for USA immigration procedure from UAE: [4]US Department of State, “Employment-Based Immigrant Visas, … Continue reading

  • A valid passport
  • Two photographs
  • DS-260 US visa application form
  • Financial statements
  • Medical examination form
  • Marriage and birth certificates (if applicable)
  • Your application regarding the evidence of your skill, education, and ability
  • Labor certification from the department of labor (if applicable)

In addition, the US embassy may contact and ask you to submit additional documents. You must submit all the requested documents for the visa application to be approved.

How to apply for an employment visa from the UAE?

For the visa, your petitioner must file a petition from the USCIS website. Once your petition is approved, you’ll receive a case number.

You can use it to log into the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC) website. Next, you’ll need to pay the visa application fee from your CEAC account.

Once that’s taken care of, your sponsor must complete the “Affidavit of Support,” which is the I-864 form. After that, you’ll need to submit financial documents as part of your visa application.

Finally, you’ll need to complete the DS-260 form online and print it out. You must bring this form with you to your visa interview later on.

During the interview, you may be asked to provide additional documents. If so, be sure to bring those with you to the interview.

Following these steps will ensure a smooth US immigration process from UAE.

What is the cost of applying for an employment visa?

The cost to apply for an employment visa is $345 per person. The amount is the same for all sub-categories of the employment-based immigration visa. [6]US Department of State, “Fees for visa services, … Continue reading

What is the processing time for an employment visa?

The processing time for an employment visa is different for each person. The processing time for a visa application can vary depending on several factors.

Inaccurate or incomplete information on the application can delay the process. This is because officers will find it difficult to verify the details provided.

You need to wait for 150 days to get just the interview appointment. [7]US Department of State, “Visa appointment wait times, https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/wait-times.html”

Additionally, some cases require additional documents after the interview stage, which can lengthen the timeframe.

It is, therefore, difficult to estimate how long the process will take in each case. However, by ensuring that all information is accurate and complete, you can help to shorten the process. [8]US Department of State, “Employment-Based Immigrant Visas, … Continue reading

See also: Check out this Dbd immigration guide on – How to immigrate to Canada from UAE, where we provide comprehensive information on the immigration process, requirements, and solutions.

Method 2. Investor visa

how to migrate to usa from uae investor

Every year, thousands of foreign nationals come to the United States in order to invest in the American economy. These individuals play a vital role in boosting the US economy by investing in businesses and creating jobs.

To encourage this investment, the US government offers investor visas. These visas are available to foreign nationals willing to invest a large sum of money in the US market.

The US visa process from UAE requires substantial funds to invest. However, those awarded this visa can enjoy many benefits, including the ability to live and work in the United States.

Investor visas are essential to bringing new capital into the American economy and helping it grow.

Who is eligible to apply for an investor visa?

The biggest eligibility criteria for an investor visa is the investment amount.

You must have at least $1 million to invest in the American market. But if you are investing in a high-unemployment or rural area, the investment minimum is lowered to $500,000. [9]US Department of State, “Immigrant investor visas, … Continue reading

The entirety of this amount must be yours, and it must be legally obtained. If you have borrowed this sum from someone else, it does not count. [10]US Department of State, “Immigrant investor visas, … Continue reading

You will also need to create at least ten full-time jobs for US workers to qualify for this visa. You have to achieve this within two years of your business’s establishment. [11]US Department of State, “Immigrant investor visas, https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/immigrate/immigrant-investor-visas.html”

Once you have invested the required money, you and your family will be granted permanent residency in the USA via this visa.

What are the documents required for an investor visa?

Before submitting the documents, make sure they are all in English. You must translate it to English if it is in any other language.

  • Passport
  • DS-260 application form
  • Two recent photographs
  • Financial statements
  • Medical examination certificate
  • Marriage and birth certificates (if applicable)

How to apply for an investor visa from the UAE?

The USCIS must approve the petition before you can move on to the next stage. After the petition has been approved, you must pay certain fees and complete a DS-261 form. [13]US Department of State, “Immigrant investor visas, … Continue reading

Your form will be processed by the National Visa Center (NVC). You will then be scheduled for an interview at the US embassy. [14]US Department of State, “Immigrant investor visas, … Continue reading

During the interview, the applicant must prove that they meet all the requirements. The interviewer may request you to bring more documents and certificates for proof.

Once you meet all requirements, you will be issued the investor visa and can travel to the US After all these steps, your US immigration process from UAE will finally begin!

Investors do not need a labor certification to apply for this visa, unlike other employment-based visas.

What is the cost of applying for an investor visa?

Aside from the massive investment funds, you must also pay for the application processing.

The application cost for an investor visa is $345 per person. If you are taking your spouse and children, this is the amount you must pay for each of them too. [15]US Department of State, “Fees for visa services, … Continue reading

How much investment is needed for an investor visa in the USA?

The minimum investment amount is $500,000 if you are investing in a high-unemployment rural area. If not, you need to invest 1 million dollars. [16]US Department of State, “Immigrant investor visas, … Continue reading

What is the processing time for an investor visa?

Like with the employment visa, there is no way of estimating the exact processing time for an investor visa. Getting the visa can take anywhere between 1 year to several years.

The time required depends on multiple factors. Whether you have submitted all necessary documents or not is the most significant factor.

The appointment wait time for an interview alone is 150 days. [17]US Department of State, “Visa appointment wait times, https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/wait-times.html”

Regardless, the wait time is quite long. So it is a good idea always to apply as soon as possible.

See also: Check out this Dbd immigration guide on – How to immigrate to UK from UAE, where we provide comprehensive information on the immigration process, requirements, and solutions.

Method 3. Diversity visa

how to migrate to usa from uae - diversity visa

A green card will be granted to individuals for US immigration from UAE based on a lottery system. If you want to move to the US quickly and efficiently, you should apply for this visa yearly.

There are tens of millions applying for a diversity visa globally, and only 55,000 of them are selected. So you have to be extremely lucky to be one of the selected applicants.

Who is eligible to apply for a diversity visa?

All adults residing in the middle east, including UAE, can apply for a diversity visa.

To be eligible for a diversity visa, applicants must meet specific requirements. Having a high school education or two years of working experience is mandatory.

What are the requirements for a diversity visa?

At the time of application, you do not need any documents. But you must have a recent digital photograph and passport details.

If you are selected, the interviewer will ask you to bring several documents. These are the documents that you usually require:

  • Valid passport
  • Photographs of you and your family
  • Birth and marriage certificates
  • Education or work experience certificate
  • Police clearance certificate
  • Medical certificate

If all these documents are fulfilled perfectly, your USA immigration process from UAE will go without any issues.

How to apply for a diversity visa?

To apply for a diversity visa, you need to wait for them to announce the application dates. Typically, applications open during October and November. [18]DV program USA, “Electronic Diversity Visa Program, https://dvprogram.state.gov”

You will be given a confirmation number upon completion. You must save the number, which will be used to check the DV lottery result when the results come.

What is the cost of a diversity visa application?

You must pay $330 per person for visa processing fees for a diversity visa. However, this amount is paid only if you are selected in the lottery.

There are no visa application fees when applying for a diversity visa. It is completely free to apply from Dubai and all other emirates in the country. [19]U.S. department of state, “Fees for visa services, … Continue reading

What is the processing time for a diversity visa?

The diversity visa results are usually released seven months after application. The applications should be filled in October, and the results should be released in May.

The Diversity visa lottery winner’s case will be completed by the end of September of the same fiscal year as the DV lottery.

See also: Check out this Dbd immigration guide on – How to immigrate to Australia from UAE, where we provide comprehensive information on the immigration process, requirements, and solutions.

Method 4. Study & exchange visa

how to migrate to usa from uae-student visa

Pursuing higher education in the United States of America is a dream for many students worldwide. The country is home to some of the best educational institutions in the world.

A degree from one of these schools can open many doors. In addition, the quality of education in the US is generally very high, and certifications from American schools hold great value.

Studying at a US school or university also allows you to work while you study. It can help offset some of the costs associated with attending school in the US.

But you must know that any job you take while studying must be related to your area of studies. This also requires authorization from your school authority. [20]U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Servies, “Students and Employment, … Continue reading

After completing your studies, you can extend your visa and apply for other visas more easily. Thus, pursuing higher education in the US is a realistic goal for many UAE residents, and there are a few ways to go about it.

The first step is to take a TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE test along with the SAT. These are tests that all American colleges and universities require for admission.

There are many test prep courses available in Dubai that can help you prepare for these exams. Once you have taken the exams, you can start applying to schools.

There are many good schools in the US, but not all of them will be a good fit for you. It is essential to research and find the schools that offer the programs and majors you are interested in.

You should also consider the cost of attendance, as this can vary greatly from school to school. Once you have narrowed down your options, you can then begin the application process.

The application process for US schools is generally quite lengthy and involved. It is important to start early and give yourself plenty of time to complete all requirements.

After submitting your applications, you will need to wait for a decision from the schools. This can take several months, so it is crucial to start early.

If you are accepted to a US school, the next step is to obtain a student visa. This visa is essential for immigration to USA from UAE for students.

You can apply for a study visa online. The US Embassy in Abu Dhabi or the US Consulate General in Dubai can be of great help too.

See also: Check out this Dbd immigration guide on – How to immigrate to New Zealand from UAE, where we provide comprehensive information on the immigration process, requirements, and solutions.

Method 5. Family Immigration

how to migrate to usa from uae family sponsorship

Immigration to USA from UAE is possible if you have a relative who is either a US citizen or a green card holder.

The sponsoring relative must be at least 21 years old to petition for you. [21]US Department of State, “Family Immigration, … Continue reading

If the sponsoring relative is a US citizen, they can petition for their spouse, parents, siblings, and children. However, if the sponsoring relative is a green card holder, they can only petition for their spouse and unmarried children. [22]US Department of State, “Family Immigration, … Continue reading

After being sponsored by a relative, you must apply for a US visa to enter the country. For this, you will have to submit documents to support your case.

Once you have entered the USA, you may eventually be eligible to apply for a green card to become a lawful permanent resident.

How to migrate to USA from UAE with a permanent resident visa?

how to migrate to usa from uae permanent residence

A green card is one of the most popular visas for immigration to the USA from the UAE. It allows the holder to live and work permanently in America.

There are several ways that you can apply for a green card. [23]US Citizenship and Immigration Servies, “Green Card Eligibility Categories, https://www.uscis.gov/green-card/green-card-eligibility-categories”

You can apply for a green card through your family if they live in the US. The US also offers green cards through employment if you qualify.

If you have an offer of full-time employment from a US employer, they may be able to sponsor you for a green card.

Applying for a green card is difficult. But it is worth the effort for immigration to USA from UAE. Some special immigration programs also allow victims of human trafficking, crime, or abuse to apply for a green card.

With a green card, you can enjoy all the benefits of living in America. From freedom to travel & work to access to quality education and healthcare, you can get all facilities.

Benefits of moving to the United States from Dubai

Dubai is a thriving metropolis in its own right. But many people are drawn to the United States for its wealth of opportunities.

For those looking for a change of pace, the US can offer a truly unique and exciting experience. The following are some of the biggest advantages of immigration to USA from UAE:

Better job opportunities

The United States is a massive country with many jobs and business opportunities. The US offers many options for those looking to further their careers.

Equal or lower cost of living

The cost of living in the UAE is relatively high, especially in Dubai. On the other hand, the cost of living varies depending on the state in the US.

For example, New York is known for its high cost of living, while Texas offers a much more affordable lifestyle.

Education

The standard of education in the UAE is excellent. But there are fewer opportunities for progression than in the US.

In America, there are far more colleges and universities to choose from. They also offer a wide range of courses and majors. This means you can find a school that suits your interests and career goals well.

Cultural and religious freedom

Vacation and tourism options

You can find diverse landscapes in the United States. In addition, the US is home to some of the world’s most iconic landmarks and natural wonders.

From the bright lights of New York City to the stunning landscapes of the Grand Canyon, there is much to explore in the US.

Events and festivals

Some of the best sporting and entertainment events in the world happen in the US If you make it to the US before 2026, you might even catch the FIFA world cup!

Our research methodology to learn how to migrate to USA from UAE

When we began researching how to migrate to the USA from UAE, we looked at all available options.

We stuck to the USCIS and US Department of State websites to get the most accurate information. These are the official websites of the US government for immigration and citizenship-related information.

We found that several visas can be obtained to live and work in the USA. All the listed visas can help you get a permanent residency status.

The USA immigration process from UAE can be long and complex. But with careful planning, it is possible to navigate it successfully.

To find the complications and delays that may occur, we also talked to people who have gone through the process.

Some of our team members at Magical Media Studio are well-versed in the US immigration process. They helped us out by letting us know about their experience with the entire immigration process.

Furthermore, we reached out to people at the official USCIS subreddit – r/USCIS/ to learn more. We asked them about their experience and reviewed the most relevant posts to gain better insight.

We also went through some official documents from USCIS, as well as research on the US immigration laws:

  • “Instructions for Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur” by US Citizenship and Immigration Services [24]US Citizenship and Immigration Servies, “Instructions for Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur, https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/document/forms/i-526instr.pdf”
  • “How do I renew or replace my permanent resident card?” by US Citizenship and Immigration Services [25]US Citizenship and Immigration Servies, “How do I renew or replace my permanent resident card?, https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/document/guides/B2en.pdf”
  • “The Effect of Immigration Law on Foreigners In USA” by Chiluba Edo of Golden Gate University, School of Law in the United States [26]SSRN, “The Effect of Immigration Law on Foreigners In USA, https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=4069997″

Our research has given us a comprehensive understanding of the USA immigration process from UAE. We are confident that this research article can help our readers achieve their immigration goals.

FAQs about USA immigration from UAE

Can I apply for immigration to USA from UAE?

Yes, you can apply for a USA immigration process from UAE. The type of visa you apply for depends on your needs.

What is the best way to immigrate to USA from UAE?

If you have a direct relative in the USA, the best way to immigrate is to have them sponsor you. If not, an actively working UAE resident can find a job in the US for immigration too.

What is the easiest process to apply for immigration to USA from UAE?

The diversity visa is, without a doubt, the easiest application for USA immigration from UAE. It is free and takes only a few minutes.

Can I apply for a US visa for work from the UAE?

Yes, you can apply for a work visa to the US You need a petitioner or employer in the US and proof of expertise in your job.

How much does it cost to migrate to USA from UAE?

The visa processing fees can cost anywhere between $160 to $775. The costs for your visa depend on your US visa application type.

Can I live permanently in the USA with a green card?

Yes, you can live in the USA permanently with a green card. You can even apply for citizenship after five years of staying in USA.

Final thoughts

Knowing how to migrate to USA from UAE is very useful for UAE residents. After all, migration to the US can offer a wealth of opportunities.

Migration to the US is very rewarding, whether it is to advance your career or to gain more freedom than in the UAE.

Before your immigration to USA from UAE, be sure to check all types of visas available. There are several visa categories depending on the nature of your travel.

Now that you know the USA immigration process from UAE, why don’t you see if you are eligible? Don’t forget to enter the diversity visa lottery program when it begins either.

If our Dbd immigration guide was helpful, please share it on social media. We always admire the support from our readers.

About the author

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Arijit Negi
Senior Contributor | + posts

Arijit Negi is a Senior Contributor at DbdPost. He has been living in Dubai for the last 18 years. He completed his degree in Master of Arts in Journalism from the University of Mumbai. Arijit's writing focuses on providing helpful guides and information for ex-pats living in UAE, as well as visitors to the UAE.

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Bidhan Gautam
Senior Contributor | + posts

Bidhan is a Senior Contributor at DbdPost. He has a Business Management degree and experience in diverse fields such as business, finance, technology, and more. He is well-versed in DdbdPost content quality standards and committed to providing accurate and reliable information.

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