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How to Open a Restaurant in Dubai Step-By-Step Guide (2023)

How to Open restaurant in Dubai

Opening a restaurant in Dubai can be daunting with so many tasks to handle. As Dubai is one of the best places in the world for any kind of business but starting a restaurant in Dubai could be one of the most profitable businesses you could imagine. As Dubai is home to different nationalities so you have so many options available when it comes to do food business in UAE. But make sure when you are planning to start a restaurant then you should be having a proper plan in place. By having a plan you can’t make more mistakes. A good plan includes all the future aspects of your restaurant so start with the right plan.

Step 1. Do a Thorough Market Analysis

Before jumping into the business it is important you should have thorough knowledge of the market so the 1st step is to analyze the local market and conduct a competitor’s analysis who are already in the market. One should keep a close eye on what the competitors are doing in terms of delivery, menu trends etc. Who are the most successful in the business and why. What the existing restaurants in the market are offering and how you can make your restaurant stand out from the rest. What you offer unique and different from others to beat your competition. How much discount, free delivery, and other benefits you should offer to stay ahead. Therefore it is highly important to do a proper study of the current market.

Step 2. Get the Requisite Restaurant Licenses in Dubai

When starting a new business in Dubai, a license is a must and a restaurant is not exception so to set up a restaurant in Dubai you need to get the relevant licenses. As a 1st step you need to get the food and trading licenses from the relevant authorities. You can obtain the food license from the department of food and safety, whereas the trade license can be obtained from DED by spending around 10K to 12K AED and the department of tourism and commerce marketing.

Step 3. Choose the Best Location for Your Restaurant in Dubai

A good and strategic location can provide long-term benefits to your business. The location selection is crucial because if you plan to serve Chinese then you should look for a location where the demand for Chinese dishes is in high demand. If you want to serve Asian then you should look for a location where more Pakistani, Indian and other Asian people are residing. For example if you want to serve Asian then International city could be good option for opening Asian cuisine. Similarly for serving western you can choose JLT for your restaurant.

Other than this the next major decision is to decide whether to choose Dubai mainland or Free zone for starting a restaurant. When opening a restaurant in the mainland area, approval from Department of Economic Development is compulsory. But when you decide to setup a restaurant in Dubai Freezone then a feezone license should be obtained and here you can enjoy 100% business ownership.

Furthermore your restaurant should have all facilities and uninterrupted access to all the essential utilities. There should be adequate water and electricity supply so the operations should run smoothly.

Step 4. Preparing Your Restaurant Business Plan

A restaurant business plan acts as a roadmap for the future development of your restaurant business. Your restaurant business plan should include all the important points such as business overview, industry analysis, operations plan, SWOT analysis, financial analysis, market survey, cash flow projections, and marketing analysis.


Step 5. Determine the Cost of Setting up Restaurant in Dubai

There is no fixed cost to setup your restaurant in Dubai and it varies wildly according to location, size, target market, staffing etc. But make sure to do a thorough research about how much your premises, staff and other things might cost, and run the numbers to work out whether this is something within your budget.

The most important thing while setting up a restaurant business is to create a proper financial plan to keep track of your spending. This must include the cost, license cost, cost of staffing and equipment etc. A part from this there are other costs which should be considered such as:

  • Local Sponsor Fee
  • Trade License Fee for DED
  • Labor and Immigration registration
  •  Restaurant rent
  •  Premises – Securing your restaurant premises will always be a major expense. Whether you’re renting or buying.
  • Staffing – Make sure you have enough money needed to hire at least a few staff, and their wages should be a key part of your costs plan.
  • Supplies and equipment – While starting a restaurant business in Dubai you can spend a lot of money on catering equipment and ingredients. If you do, then make sure you mark up your dishes accordingly and don’t waste your money without planning.
  • Energy bills – For your restaurant, you will need proper power without interruption so it’s crucial to shop around and find the best deals. You should plan decent amount for the payment of bills.

Step 6. Prepare the Documents Required For Starting Restaurant in Dubai

  • Trade License
  • Food and safety license
  • Non-objection certificate from the local municipality of Dubai

Step 7. Recruiting for your restaurant in Dubai: how to hire top talent

The success of your restaurant business is totally depend upon the quality of your staff. Hiring the best staff can make your business successful. People love tasty meals so always hire the best chefs to deliver quality food to attract customers.

Step 8. Market Your Restaurant

Once the restaurant has been set up the next big challenge is to market your restaurant. Using social media, local SEO, Display ads you can enhance the visibility of your restaurant. By verifying your restaurant on Google my business you can attract local people to your restaurant.

How to Get Started with the Process

If you are planning to open a restaurant in Dubai or interested in any other business related to food such as ,food factories, bakery, butcheries, food processing, catering services, food packing and not sure where to start then you have come to the right place. We as a leading business setup consultant in Dubai will help you in setting your restaurant anywhere in UAE such as a Diera, Bur Dubai, JLT, Business Bay, Al Qouz, Sharjah, Ajman or any area you want. With more than 25 years UAE experience we offer the most affordable and reliable business setup services in UAE. Whether you are looking for opening a business bank account in Dubai, PRO Services, Office Setup in UAE or any other business setup related services then get in touch with our team today and start your restaurant business in Dubai right away.