Cafeteria License in Dubai

The Emirate of Dubai is the centre of trade, commerce and finance in the Middle East. The robust growth in the Emirate is a result of encouraging foreign investors and entrepreneurs to start their business operations in the region by offering supportive policies and regulations for SME’s planning to set up in Dubai in addition to well-established companies, organizations. As a small business owner, you can set up a cafeteria or small restaurant to take a step into Dubai's food industry. Generally, the business scenario in Dubai is supportive for international players, especially in the food industry where foreign businesses run successfully due to the increasing demand for wide-range of cuisines from the massive expat population in the region.

Starting a Company in Dubai region is a great way to succeed in making lucrative profits, with a large market and numerous opportunities for business growth. Notably, Dubai is an ideal location for starting a restaurant or cafeteria venture as the region rated high in quality of life as people spend generously on luxuries and don't mind eating out regularly. Here in Dubai, people eat outside on an average of 6 times per week, which is higher than the US average of 4 times per week. So if you are looking to start a small restaurant or cafeteria in Dubai, then waste no time by setting it up by contacting us. Our expert professionals have rich experience in guiding foreigners to set up a thriving restaurant and cafeteria business in Dubai as well as other parts of the UAE.

Licensing in Dubai

Emirate of Dubai remains a massive market inside the United Arab Emirates, contributing high revenue to the UAE's national economy and stands as a leader in implementing effective economic reforms and pro-business policies. Unlike the other Emirates, Dubai had clear goals regarding the economic diversification and sought to streamline the different business sectors to maintain the standards, nurture innovation, ensure fair competition and regulated the industries. In the process of optimising the industries and businesses, the Ministries and governmental agencies created licenses along with specific types of approvals and permits to ensure that the regulations are followed and the standards are maintained.

If you are starting a business in Dubai, it is mandatory to apply and acquire business licenses before starting your operations with the valid permits and approvals from the respective agencies. Most cases, the business requires two sets of licensing that authorises the company to begin its operations in Dubai. The first set of business license is the base license which covers wide-range of business activities (i.e., trade, industrial, commercial, and professional) and the other set license is a speciality license which allows your company to perform specific trades or business activities under the pre-requisite of having the appropriate primary business licenses in Dubai.

In the scenario of starting a cafeteria or a small restaurant in Dubai, you need to obtain two separate licenses from the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DED) or from the respective free zone in which you plan to operate. First, you have to acquire a professional license; then you have to get approvals from the respective agencies. Secondly, you need to apply and obtain the food license, which authorises your company to carry out operations in the food industry.

Types of License in Dubai

  1. Trade License
  1. Industrial License
  1. Professional License

What is a Cafeteria License?

The Cafeteria License authorises your business to set up and operate cafeteria in the Dubai catering the UAE market or in a free zone. A cafeteria license is a food license that is mandatory for setting up a cafeteria or small restaurants or food trucks or restaurant chains in Dubai. Obtaining a Professional license from the DED is a pre-requisite for applying for a Cafeteria license in Dubai.

Category of Cafeteria License in Dubai

  • Name of the License: Cafeteria License
  • Activity Code: 552003
  • Activity Group: Restaurants and Coffee Shops
  • License Type: Professional

Activities Allowed under the Cafeteria License is Dubai include

  • Selling coffee, tea, snacks, fruit juices
  • Freshly prepared foods like pastries, brownies, cakes, pasta, noodles, hotdog, sandwich and other items which are immediately prepared on-site or prepared for consumption within a few days
  • Pre-packed foodstuffs like chocolates, candy, biscuits, chips, beverages like soda and soft-drinks

Even though the license allows you to sell most of the general stuff in the cafeteria, it is prudent to first check with the rules and regulations before adding items on the menu.

How to Get a Cafeteria License in Dubai?

The Cafeteria License in Dubai also known as the food license is issued by the Food and Safety Department of Dubai to businesses registered in Dubai authorising them to operate in the food industry by preparing and selling through central kitchens, restaurants, cafeterias and food trucks in Dubai. Furthermore, the trade license for setting up a cafeteria has to obtain from the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing in Dubai, which allows your cafeteria business to undertake commercial activities.

Procedure to Obtain a Cafeteria License

  1. Prepare all the documents and submit them to the DED
  1. Acquire the Professional License by applying from the DED
  1. Apply for the cafeteria license generally known as the food license from the Dubai Municipality Food and Safety Department
  1. Choose a local sponsor for satisfying the Dubai local sponsor statutory requirements
  1. Get approvals from the respective agencies such as Dubai Municipality, Food and Safety Department and the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing
  1. Select the location for setting up your cafeteria, sign a tenancy contract if you are renting it
  1. Sign agreements with your local sponsor in the presence of a Notary Public Court
  1. Register your business with the Ministry of Labour and Immigration Department

Checklist when Applying for a Cafeteria License in Dubai

  • Memorandum of Association (MOA) with Local sponsor
  • No Objection Certificate (NOC)
  • Foolproof business plan
  • Cafeteria business marketing plan
  • Approval from Dubai Municipality (DM)
  • Approval from the Dubai Economic Development Department (DED)
  • Approval from the Dubai Food and Safety Department
  • Visa for yourself and foreign employees after registering with the Ministry of Labour and Immigration Department
  • Blueprint of the cafeteria business
  • Tenancy Contract

Why Start your Cafeteria in Dubai?

As a steady economic growth is projected into the future, Dubai's economy is diversified away from reliance on hydrocarbons to tourism, retail and manufacturing, making it immune to constant changes in the oil prices. Moreover, the ecosystem with its modern infrastructure, state-of-the-art telecom networks, world-class logistics, and supportive framework with low taxes, total foreign ownership attracts foreign investors for investing into the region by setting up companies in Dubai, starting business ventures or commercial operations.

Furthermore, starting a business in Dubai is usually considered an efficient process. However, as a new business owner, you might understand that starting a business in Dubai is a streamlined and elaborate process which requires you to get licenses, various permits and approvals from governmental agencies before starting your business operations.

Contact us to obtain business licenses, acquire approvals and permits from various government ministries, agencies without any hassle. Our expert business setup team in Dubai can help you in getting all the prerequisite for starting a cafeteria in Dubai while you can focus on developing your business.