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Freelancing As A Web Developer In The UAE - A Brief Guide


October 26th, 2021 21:24

Freelance web developers in the UAE

With its fast development, the UAE has proven its worth in the international arena. The success of Vision 2021 has made Dubai, UAE the center of tech innovation and evolution, and such booming tech markets often have a high demand for freelance web developers.

If you have a knack for creativity and a skillset of coding, you too can be hired as a freelance web developer with this simple guide. 

Becoming a freelance web developer

In the simplest terms, a web developer is the mind behind all the lengthy algorithms and hefty systems that run a website. A web developer builds a website from the scratch and creates a system that runs smoothly.

A lot of analysis and logical thinking goes into this one. Startups and new businesses are constantly looking for sharp minds that can create a competitive website.

So what can you do to excel as a freelance web developer and even make it your primary source of income? 

  • Learn more than just 1 language. There is power in variety
  • Build some prototypes and mock-ups to showcase your best projects. 
  • Create a portfolio website featuring your work and feedback from previous and ongoing projects.
  • Keep learning about the new trends in the tech industry and be up to date with what the clients could demand according to the current market vogues.

Top websites for web developers to find gigs in Dubai


  • Ureed has a pool of highly trained freelancers from various fields including web developers. The website is global with a special focus on the gulf region. The website gives you a chance to work for some of the biggest and renowned companies like Amazon and Khan Academy.

  • is one of the opportunities for freelancers to be a part of a community to get exclusive access to gigs and projects. It is a freelance offering by Dubai Media City, Dubai Internet City, and Dubai Knowledge Park. This is done by their online platform, Marketplace.


  • Exclusive to the UAE, Bawabba provides opportunities to freelance for small businesses. You can create an account and the business owners can contact you by email. The website does not hire freelancers. It only provides a platform for freelancers and businesses to interact.

  • It has a presence across the Middle East including UAE and Saudi Arabia. The site follows a system of bidding on the projects posted by prospective clients. The website is especially popular for its freelancers with local knowledge in the expertise of the Middle East region.

How to become a freelancer in the UAE

To become an independent contractor or a freelancer n the UAE you need a UAE freelance license. The license is renewable every year, or every 3 years, and is a mandatory requirement under the UAE labor laws. 

This freelance license is available to only those who work in media, education, consultation services, or tech and IT sectors. 

The charges for obtaining the work permit differ for different authorities and zones. 

Why 2021 will see a higher demand for freelancer web developers?

The economy took a major hit in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. But the glass half full situation is relevant for freelancers. With mounting financial pressure, companies are more likely to prefer freelancers to regular employees which has increased the income opportunities for web developers.  

Dubai, the commercial heartland of UAE, has also launched the Great Economic Reset Programme which is an ambitious project to reshape the economy in the post-coronavirus time. Remote working and gig economy finds special mention in the policy and research analysis by the program., a UK-based mobile phone and retail company, ranked Dubai 8th out of 30 cities best suited for freelancing with a high employment rate of 81% and a high commute satisfaction rate.

Dubai is definitely ahead in the race of full-fledged gig economies and hence is a perfect place for web developers to begin their careers as freelancers.


Freelancing is becoming more popular than ever. It has some amazing perks. The fact that you don’t have to bind yourself to a 9 to 5 job anymore has boosted the number of freelancers across the world. So, start learning and become a freelance web developer today!

Frequently asked questions

1. Can web developers work from home?

  • Yes. Most web developers prefer working from home as the work requires only a computer and internet connection. 

2. What are the five essential skills every freelance web developer should have?

Here are five essential skills for every web developer to make it big in their field:

  • Ability to optimize coding and testing the codes
  • Thorough know-how of all common platforms and browsers
  • Keeping up with the trends
  • Analytical skills to understand what the client wants
  • Creativity to make the website stand out from the crowd

3. How do I get a web developer job with no experience?

Here is what you can do to get freelance web developer gigs without experience

  • Have demos ready
  • Make your own portfolio website
  • Get references
  • Get certification to showcase skills
  • Charge lesser than the market rate initially to increase your chances of getting the gig

4. How much does a web developer make?

  • The earnings of web developers depend on the experience and the business they are working for. As a beginner, a web developer typically charges between 50 to 60 dollars an hour.

5. How many languages should web developers know?

  • There is no dearth of computer languages that a web developer can learn but for a successful start to the career, a web developer must know 4 essential languages namely: Java, Python, Scala, and C++.

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