Regardless of the time of year in the UAE, there are always groups of tourists sightseeing and capturing memories on their phones, whether it's amidst the magnificent dunes or beneath the gleaming skyscrapers. The demand for tour guides is expected to increase in 2024, creating 23,500 job opportunities. Different emirates offer various courses for those seeking to become licensed tour guides. This guide provides information on the qualifications and fees for becoming a tour guide in the UAE.


Aspiring tour guides in Dubai can avail a government licensing program that is entirely online, offering flexibility for applicants. The program, available in English and Mandarin, is open to individuals aged 18 and above. The required documents include a no objection letter from the sponsor, a police clearance certificate from Dubai Police, an attested academic certificate, an English proficiency certificate, a First Aid certificate from a certified safety training center in the UAE, Emirates ID, and a passport-sized photo with a white background. The cost for the English course is Dh7,500, while the Mandarin course costs Dh9,810. Emirati nationals can join the course for free, and the entire process takes about one business day.


Those interested in pursuing a career as tour guides in Sharjah can explore various programs offered by the city's Commerce and Tourism Development Authority. Aspiring tour guides must be above 18 years old and can choose from programs like tour guiding for beginners, Al Jawhara Women Empowerment tour guiding for beginners, advanced tour guiding, and others. The necessary requirements include a copy of a valid passport, residency visa (for non-Emiratis), family book and birth certificate (for Emiratis), national ID, personal photograph, updated CV, educational qualifications, and a good conduct certificate valid for 3 months.

Abu Dhabi

Residents of Abu Dhabi can obtain a tour guide license through the TAMM platform, with assessments falling under the emirate's Department of Culture and Tourism. For UAE nationals and children of Emirati mothers, the process is free, while expats are charged a fee of Dh2,700. The required documents include Emirates ID, good conduct certificate, First Aid certificate, passport copy, residency visa copy, and a passport-sized photo. The process involves watching an awareness session, reviewing the training calendar, joining a cohort, paying the fees, and completing the assessment to receive the tourist guide license.


Ajman's government has also introduced a licensing system for tour guides. Applicants must be at least 18 years old, with new tour guides paying Dh3,255 and those licensed from other emirates paying Dh2,205. The required documents for individuals include a high school certificate (or equivalent), valid residency visa and Emirates ID, and proof of passing an English language test. The application process involves applying through the Government of Ajman's website, paying the fees, undergoing training, and taking a knowledge assessment to obtain the permit within one day.