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How to start a daycare business in Dubai ?

How to start a daycare business in Dubai?

Starting a daycare business in Dubai can be a rewarding venture, but it requires careful planning and adherence to government regulations. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to start a daycare business in Dubai, covering key topics including the starting process, prerequisite considerations, required documents, costs, and necessary qualifications.

1. Understanding the Daycare Business:

Starting a daycare in Dubai should begin with a clear understanding of the industry. It’s not just babysitting; it involves providing a structured learning and nurturing environment for children. Dubai’s diverse expatriate population and the increasing number of working parents make daycare services highly in demand.

2. Pre-requisite considerations for starting day care:

a. Market Research:

  • Start by conducting thorough market research. Identify the areas in Dubai with the highest demand for daycare services. You may want to focus on neighborhoods with a high concentration of working parents.
  • Determine the age groups you want to cater to. Consider whether you’ll provide services for infants, toddlers, preschoolers, or a mix.
  • Analyze the working hours of parents in your target area. Some parents may require extended daycare hours to accommodate their work schedules.
  • Research your competition. Find out what other daycare centers offer and identify gaps in services that you can fill.

b. Location:

  • Choosing the right location is crucial. Look for a facility in a safe, accessible, and child-friendly neighborhood.
  • Ensure your location complies with zoning regulations and can be used for a daycare business.
  • Consider the convenience and safety of drop-off and pick-up areas.

c. Business Plan:

  • Develop a comprehensive business plan that includes a mission statement, a detailed budget, financial projections, a marketing strategy, and a plan for growth.
  • Your business plan will be invaluable when seeking financing or investors.

d. Licensing and Regulations:

  • Understand the legal requirements for starting a daycare center in Dubai. Regulations and licensing requirements may change, so stay updated.
  • Visit government websites or consult with business and legal advisors to get the latest information on licensing and regulations.

3. Legal Requirements and Regulations:

a. Licensing:

  • In Dubai, you will need to obtain a trade license from the Department of Economic Development (DED) or the Dubai Creative Clusters Authority (DCCA) if you are located within a free zone.
  • Ensure that you meet all the requirements for licensing, including facility standards, staffing requirements, and safety measures.

b. Facility Standards:

  • Your daycare facility must meet specific standards regarding safety and hygiene. This includes childproofing, clean and well-ventilated spaces and proper sanitation. You may need to make modifications or renovations to meet these standards.
  • Implement rigorous health and safety protocols. This includes procedures for emergencies, first aid, and fire safety.

c. Staffing Requirements:

  • Dubai has specific regulations about staff-to-child ratios. Ensure that you have the right number of qualified staff members to care for the children in your facility.
  • Staff should have the necessary qualifications and certifications related to childcare and early childhood education.

4. Required Documents to start a Day Care in Dubai:

To get started, you’ll need several important documents, which may include:

a. Trade License:

Apply for a trade license from the DED or the DCCA if you are within a free zone.

Starting a day care business in Dubai involves :

  • Determine your daycare’s business activity. In most cases, it falls under a service activity category.
  • Decide on your business’s legal structure. Options include sole proprietorship, partnership, or LLC (Limited Liability Company).
  • Choose a unique and appropriate name for your daycare business. Make sure it complies with naming rules set by the DED.
  • Secure approval for your business location from the Dubai Municipality. This is an essential step before applying for a trade license.
  • Submit the trade license application to the DED or the relevant authority if you’re operating within a free zone.
  • Prepare and submit the required legal documents, including a copy of your tenancy contract, approval from the Dubai Municipality, and a business plan.
  • Pay the necessary fees for your trade license. The cost will depend on the type and size of your daycare business.
  • Your trade license application will undergo a review process. you will receive a trade license once it is approved.

b. Facility Approval:

To operate a daycare in Dubai, you must meet specific facility standards and obtain approval from the Dubai Municipality. Here’s how to secure the required facility approvals:

  • Facility Preparation: Ensure that your daycare facility complies with safety and hygiene standards. This includes childproofing, cleanliness, proper ventilation, and sanitation. Make necessary modifications or renovations to meet these standards. For instance, you may need to install safety gates, child-friendly furniture, and emergency exits.
  • Submit an Application: Prepare an application for facility approval and submit it to the Dubai Municipality. This application should include detailed information about your facility, including floor plans, safety features, and sanitation measures.
  • Inspection: The Dubai Municipality will conduct an inspection of your daycare facility. This will include an evaluation of the facility’s suitability for childcare.
  • Compliance: If your facility passes the inspection and meets the necessary standards, you will receive approval from the Dubai Municipality.
  • Licensing and Renewal: Your facility approval is a prerequisite for obtaining your trade license. Ensure that you have this approval in place before applying for the trade license. Similar to the trade license, facility approvals may need to be renewed periodically, and your facility should continue to meet safety and hygiene standards.

c. Staff Certificates:

  • Ensure that your staff members have the necessary qualifications and certifications in childcare and early childhood education.

d. Health and Safety Certificates:

  • Obtain certificates demonstrating compliance with health and safety standards.

e. Tenancy Contract:

  • Present a valid tenancy contract for your business location as part of the licensing process.

f. Business Plan:

  • Include a detailed business plan that outlines your goals, services, budget, and expansion strategies.

5. Costs of starting a daycare business in Dubai:

Starting a daycare business involves various costs, including:

  • Licensing Fees: The cost of obtaining a trade license varies based on the type and size of your daycare center. the average price to get a license is 15000 AED to 25000 AED.
  • Rent and Utilities: Budget for the cost of leasing or renting a suitable facility. This can vary greatly depending on location and size.
  • Staff Salaries: Factor in the salaries of your staff members. Employee compensation may be one of your most significant ongoing expenses.
  • Equipment and Supplies: Invest in age-appropriate toys, furniture, learning materials, and other supplies for the children in your care. Ensure that these items meet safety standards.
  • Marketing and Advertising: Allocate a budget for marketing and advertising to attract clients. This may include online advertising, creating a professional website, and distributing flyers.
  • Insurance Premiums: Expect ongoing expenses for liability insurance.

6. Necessary Qualifications:

a. Education: Consider taking courses in early childhood education or child development. These will help you understand child behavior and development, which is crucial for providing high-quality care.

b. Experience: Previous experience in childcare, especially in a daycare setting, can be a significant asset. This experience helps you understand the daily operations, challenges, and needs of a daycare business.

c. CPR and First Aid Certification: Ensure that you and your staff members are trained in CPR and first aid. This is a crucial skill for handling emergencies.

d. Regulatory Knowledge: Familiarize yourself with local regulations and licensing requirements. Consider consulting with a business advisor like us who specializes in daycare businesses in Dubai.

What Support Do We Provide?

Initiating a daycare facility in Dubai requires adhering to stringent regulations, and it’s essential to seek the guidance of experienced professionals. With the assistance of leading business setup consultants in Dubai, like Legal House, the entire process can become more efficient, straightforward, and cost-effective. Our qualified consultants specialize in all aspects of business setup in Dubai, making your journey a smoother one. Feel free to connect with us for a no-cost consultation today!


What are the key license requirements for operating a daycare facility in Abu Dhabi?

  • Key requirements may include submitting a business plan, obtaining a suitable facility, ensuring staff qualifications, meeting health and safety standards, and obtaining the necessary permits and approvals.

What are the typical expenses associated with opening a nursery in Dubai?

  • Typical expenses include rent for the facility, staff salaries, licensing fees, utilities, equipment, and furnishings.

Can you outline the necessary steps and documentation needed to obtain a daycare license in Abu Dhabi?

  • Steps may involve submitting an application, providing proof of facility compliance, demonstrating staff qualifications, and obtaining approvals from relevant authorities. Documentation may include business plans, floor plans, and staff certifications.