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How to Get a Restaurant License in Dubai – All You Need to Know

Dubai is home to millions of expatriates. The restaurant sector in Dubai has witnessed massive growth during the last decades or so. There has been a staggering increase in the number of restaurants in the recent years. The restaurants have become the most thriving businesses that attracted investors across the globe.

The most important requirement for the restaurant setup is to acquire a restaurant license. As a top business consulting agency, Bizvise can help businesses easily obtain a restaurant license in Dubai.

Before starting a restaurant business in Dubai, you have to keep in mind numerous factors. This includes license type, location, cost, business plan, marketing plan etc. Those who are planning to start a business must come up with a clear cut plan based on their business needs and go through the right steps for the successful setup.

Types of restaurant license available in Dubai, UAE

1. Restaurant and Coffee Shops License

It’s a professional license that is needed for opening restaurants and coffee shops in Dubai, UAE. Here the restaurants that are equipped with right infrastructure to prepare and serve food are allowed. Also, beverages (liquid refreshments) used by public for immediate consumption are allowed.

2. Mini Store and Restaurant License

This is a commercial license which is needed for opening mini restaurants and coffee shops. This license allows restaurants to prepare and serve food and snacks. Apart from that, this license can be used to sell consumer goods such as freshly preserved and canned food, beverages, dairy products, bakery products etc.

3. Floating Restaurant License

Floating Restaurant License is a commercial license which is needed for opening restaurants and coffee shops for Tourism activities. The ships, boats, or yachts equipped for dining on board are considered here.

How to start a restaurant in Dubai

1. Obtain food and restaurant license

The first step to start a restaurant in Dubai is to obtain your food and trading licenses. The Department of Food and Safety is the authority that provides you with the business licenses. For acquiring the trade license you must approach the Department of Economic Development (Approx. AED 10,000 to AED 12,000), and the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM). A copy of the trade license, along with the interior decoration plan should be produced for obtaining a food license. Also you should obtain other licenses like Food Consignment License, Vehicle Permit License, and Liquor License.

2. Select a suitable location

A business location is one of the most important factors in business success. If your location is not easily accessible, your business won’t be able to grow well. So you must choose a location that suits your business and factors like accessibility, customer Base, supplier availability, Visibility etc. should be considered. The restaurant location can be in the mainland, free zone, or offshore.

In the Dubai mainland area, the sponsor will hold 51% of your shares, and the rest shall remain with the owner. If you are planning to start a restaurant in free zone area, the consent of the corresponding free zone authority should be obtained. The Free zone area allows you to hold 100% of your shares and might not need a local sponsor. But in free zone your area for trade may have some restrictions.

3. Prepare the business plan

A business plan needs to be crafted after choosing the location. The business plan must be outlined clearly and all the aspects should be analysed in a pragmatic manner. The business plan you prepared should include SWOT analysis, marketing, contingency plan for uncertainties, market survey, cash flow projections etc.

4. Calculate the business cost

Finally, before starting your restaurant you must make a proper financial plan to keep track of your spending. The plan must include the restaurant cost, cost of staffing and equipment cost, license cost and other costs. A rough estimate of all the investment and expenditure should be prepared.

Apart from that, the below mentioned costs should be considered:

  • Local sponsor fee - approximately AED10, 000/year
  • Trade license fee - approximately AED10, 000 to AED 12,000
  • Labor and immigration registration fee - up to AED 8,000
  • Restaurant premises rent – AED 60, 000 and above (varies by location)

Architectural requirements

  • A kitchen with an area of at least 300 to 380 square feet (if there is a tandoor in the kitchen), or 40% of the total area of the restaurant
  • Good ventilation facility
  • The chimney should 2 meters higher than the nearest building
  • Washable, non-absorbent, and fireproof walls, floor, and roof
  • Storage facility for all kinds of food items
  • A basin for washing the utensils. Also a separate basin, one for cleaning the vegetables, and one for meat
  • The drainage pipe should be at a distance of at least 2 inches from the wall

Documents required for opening a restaurant in Dubai

  • Trading License.
  • Food and Safety License.

NOC from the Municipality of Dubai:

  • Ramadan Permit
  • Liquor Permit
  • Pork Permit
  • Delivery Permit

For setting up a restaurant business in Dubai, you must go through all these steps. If you are not well informed about the business setup procedures, you must seek the guidance of a professional business consulting agency.

Bizvise assist you in obtaining a restaurant license in Dubai and UAE. Our team of professionals deeply understand the business and legal procedures associated with the business setup. As a leading business consultant in Dubai, we can provide customized and effective business solutions to you and contribute to your business growth. Here are some of the services we do.

  • Give you information about the necessary steps for obtaining your restaurant license in Dubai
  • Help you find the best locations in Dubai for a restaurant business
  • Help you in create a comprehensive business plan
  • •Help you get approvals for food and trade licenses

Planning to obtain a restaurant license in Dubai and build a successful business, connect with us now.