Visa requirements for entering Abu Dhabi vary greatly between different nationalities and it is always advised to check regulations before travelling. Currently, every nationality entering the UAE needs a visa except citizens of GCC countries (Gulf Cooperation Council: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia) expatriate residents of the GCC (certain nationalities and professions) and British citizens with the right of abode in the UK.
Nationals of the following countries do not require Visas to enter the UAE: Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Brunei, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Monaco, New Zealand, Netherlands, Norway, Oman, Portugal, Qatar, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States of America, Vatican.
GCC nationals can stay more or less as long they like. British citizens can stay for a month and then apply for a visa for a further two months. European, American, South African and Australian citizens may obtain a visit visa from the UAE embassy in their respective countries before departure.
For all other nationalities, a visa must be applied for before the visitor enters the country either through their respective embassy, a local UAE sponsor or a local hotel.
Visas through Hotels
Tourists can get a visa from a tourist company or a hotel by first making a reservation for at least one night. They must fax/courier the hotel a copy of their passport along with the reason for the visit (tourism is an acceptable reason) and their arrival date. You must also make sure that the hotel faxes you a copy of the visa when it is ready.
Airlines may require confirmation (preferably a fax copy of the document) that a visa is held before check-in at the airport. The original is held at Abu Dhabi Airport for collection before passport control.
This visa is issued through tourist companies and it is valid for 30 days. You cannot renew it or extend it. If the Visa holder (tourist) stays more than the 30 days, then that person has to pay a fine per day plus some charges for an out pass.
This visa is issued through Department of Neutralization and Residence. It is stamped for 30 days validity but it is valid for 60 days and can be extended for 30 more days by paying some amount. The extension needs to be done before the 60th day. If the visitor stays more than 60 days or more than 90 days (after the extension) they will have to pay a fine per day plus some charges for an out pass.