Photography business in Dubai

Start a Photography business in Dubai

by Priyadarshini Balamurugan 27, Dec 2023

Open a Photography business in Dubai, where dreams take flight and your photography skills can soar even higher. Don't just take pictures in Dubai, capture its spirit. Infuse your photography skills with the vibrant energy of Dubai, its passion, and its relentless pursuit of perfection. Be the artist who connects your clients with the essence of the city. Additionally, the country is at the forefront of promoting businesses worldwide.

The city offers photographers a large potential client base and a number of business opportunities. Read on to learn more about setting up a photography business in Dubai.

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Steps to Start a Photography Business in Dubai

Below are the steps to start a photography Business in Dubai:

  1.  Choose a Business Name

Choosing the name of the business is not an easy task. Here in the Emirates, there are a few extra factors to keep in mind as the UAE has a set of strict yet easy-to-follow naming conventions.

  2. Specify Your Business Activity

Although you are expected to specify your business activities, you are not obliged to apply for a specific film production license, video production license, post-production license or even a videography license or photography license. However, it may be referred to as such.

  3. Prepare the Initial Documents

There are two ways to apply for a license. Either direct to the Department of Economic Development (DED) or at one of the UAE's free zones. 

In both cases, you will need to provide documents, such as:

  • A Filled Application Form.
  • Passport copy of the proposed owner or owners.
  • Two passport-size color photos.

  4. Obtain the License

The original license required is a professional services license, under which you can carry out a wide range of photography- and videography-related projects.

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Cost of Opening a Photography Business in Dubai

The cost to start a photography business in Dubai depends on the jurisdiction you choose and the number of visa along with the size of your business. Below mentioned is the approximate price to start a photography business in Dubai.


AED 21,000


AED 12,900 

*Price may vary depending of the jurisdiction, number of Visa and the size of business.

*For freezone the fee covers by the respective government charges

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 How to Promote your Photography Business in Dubai?

Promote your photography business in Dubai and capture the essence of success, innovation, and global connections. Attract clients who demand excellence by using the following strategies:

  • Curate and showcase your portfolio to highlight your efficiency and display your expertise.  
  • Use social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook at the right time to engage yourself more in the global market.
  • Attend events related to the industry and build connections with local photographers and businesses related to photography.  
  • Enhance the credibility of your website by using SEO techniques to build trust among the clients.   
  • Advertise offers with discounts in the initial stages to attract clients. 
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Conditions to Start Your Photography Services in Dubai

The following conditions are necessary for a photography business setup in Dubai:

  • You can open a photography business or work as a freelance photographer. If you opt for freelance photography, you may check out Dubai Media City or Fujairah Creative City. They permit photographers to work as freelancers.
  • You will be asked to submit a business plan, passport and visa copies, and bank reference letter.
  • The National Media Council is a governing body through which photography businesses in Dubai must apply for approval and licenses to engage in outdoor photography, including aerial applications.
  • For the application procedure, the photographers must identify the location, duration, and list of photographers for the shoot.
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National Media Council – The Regulatory Authority for Your Photography Agency, Dubai

You must know that, in the UAE, you must obtain a local permit from the Department of Economic Development (DED) or the National Media Council to carry out outdoor photography. Outdoor photography is a regulated activity in the UAE. The regulatory agency responsible for this is the National Media Council. 

You must lodge an online application for any aerial or ground-level photography session in public areas. The requirements to obtain a photography permit are:

  • Confirm the start and finish of the photography session.
  • Identify the location of the photography.
  • Provide details of all photographers. 

The procedure is relatively straightforward; therefore, compliance is easy.

If you are someone who is not interested in setting up a photography business in Dubai, there is one more option called freelancing. You can freelance your skills and gain experience along with the popularity.

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Become a Professional Freelance Photographer in Dubai

Due to the city's rapid growth and relative wealth, it is exciting to be a freelance photographer in Dubai. Recent technological advancements such as 3D capture, Augmented Reality integration in real-time, and super-high-resolution digital photography mean that we are at the start of a new era in photography.

With Dubai always developing new cutting-edge technologies, launching your business places you right in the middle of this brave, new world and opens up massive opportunities to make money as a freelance photographer.

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Start Your Agency or Professional Photo Studio in Dubai with Us

Commitbiz is one of the best business setup consultants in Dubai, who can give you the best assistance through the company setup process. Holding hands with experts is always the perfect thing to do. Contact us now to benefit from our number of services.

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What are the initial documents required to obtain a photography license in Dubai?

The following documents are required initially:

  • A filled application form.

  • Passport copy of the proposed owner or owners.

  • Two passport-size color photos.

What are the requirements to obtain a photography permit?

The requirements to obtain a photography permit are:

  • Confirm the start and finish of the photography session

  • Identify the location of the photography

  • Provide details of all photographers.

Which authority is responsible for outdoor photography in Dubai, UAE?

The responsible regulatory agency is the National Media Council.

Which free zones are ideal for setting up a photography business in Dubai?

Dubai Media City and Dubai Studio City are ideal.

Can I work as a professional freelancer photographer in Dubai?

Yes, after obtaining the necessary permits.