Start a delivery service business in Dubai [2024 Guide]

Delivery services are no longer a luxury for businesses in the food industry. Delivery service businesses today are a must-have, and the United Arab Emirates leads the market for online food delivery services, fast deliveries, and delivery partner operations.

The convenience of food delivery services makes people’s lives easier and saves time. With cost-effective delivery services, live order tracking, smartphone apps, and 24/7 support, online food delivery services in Dubai have transformed the food industry.

If you’re considering starting a delivery service business in Dubai, now is the right time to take advantage of the market’s surge in popularity.

In this article, we’ll look into the following:

  • An overview of the delivery services business in the UAE
  • Steps to start a delivery services business in Dubai, UAE
  • Cost of starting a delivery services business in Dubai, UAE
  • How to market a delivery services business
  • Working with Trade License Zone

An overview of the delivery services business in the UAE

A delivery services business focuses on cafes and restaurants. All catering services in the UAE offer fast delivery to their customers, and third-party delivery services provide it too.

The COVID-19 pandemic severely affected the food industry, but delivery service businesses helped to keep the industry afloat in Dubai. The majority of Dubai’s population are foreign nationals who work as professionals and expect on-demand, affordable, reliable food delivery services.

While there are established food delivery services in Dubai and the UAE, the market is growing at such a rate that there are gaps in the market for smaller and more dynamic food delivery services.

You don’t need to start a restaurant or catering business in the United Arab Emirates – your delivery services business can simply collect from nearby restaurants and deliver the food.

Steps to start a delivery services business in Dubai, UAE

All companies trading within the UAE must adhere to the country’s business setup, company formation, and municipal regulations. This section describes the six essential steps to start a delivery services business in Dubai, UAE.

Step 1: Partner with Trade License Zone

If you’re looking to open a delivery services business in Dubai, the first step is to partner with Trade License Zone. Our business setup experts will manage all aspects of your company’s registration and setup. We will guide you on the various governmental and municipal regulations when applying for a delivery services company trade license in Dubai.

Step 2: Choose a name for your delivery services business

Trade License Zone will help you choose and register your delivery services company name with the UAE’s Registry Office. You can use your name in the company’s name, but you must use it in full instead of just your surname or initials. The business name must adhere to the UAE’s naming policies, including that a business name cannot include offensive or blasphemous language or references to Allah or Islam.

Step 3: Choose your business activities

Choosing your company’s business activities is essential for your delivery services trade license in Dubai. This license enables you to carry out several activities under the UAE’s laws, but failure to list all your business activities on your trade license may result in penalties. That’s why it’s best to partner with company formation experts such as Trade License Zone to ensure that your license application and business activities are aligned.

Step 4: Select the business structure

Dubai recently streamlined its business laws to create two main types of business zones in Dubai: Mainland and Free Zone companies. You can choose either of these business structures for your delivery service company, but it is important to understand the differences to make the best decision for your business.

A Mainland company enables a business to trade within the UAE. A foreign national entrepreneur or investor is limited to holding only 49% of a business’s shares, while the UAE’s laws require a UAE national to own 51% of the shares in a partnership with foreign-owned Mainland companies.

A Free Zone company can be 100% owned by a foreign entrepreneur or investor. They can register it in one of over 40 special trade zones in Dubai that offer unique benefits to foreign business owners. These services include startup support structures, business incubators, and financial support.

If you’re unsure whether to choose between a Mainland or a Free Zone company business structure for your delivery services company, our expert business advisors at Trade License Zone will help you decide.

Step 5: Apply for your delivery service trade license

Delivery service trade licenses are approved and issued by Dubai’s Department of Economic Development (DED). Before submitting your trade license application to this agency, let a company formation expert such as Trade License Zone help you avoid mistakes that could cost time and money.

Step 6: Apply for your visa and open a corporate bank account

After you’ve applied for your delivery services company trade license in Dubai, you need to apply for your visa and open a corporate bank account for your company.

These can be complicated processes. Contact our specialist team at Trade License Zone to help you.

Cost of starting a delivery services business in Dubai, UAE

The cost of starting a delivery service business in Dubai is AED 20,000 to AED 30,000. The cost varies on several factors, such as type of business setup, trade license, government fees, and more.

A delivery services trade license costs AED 8,000 to AED 15,000. If you’d like an accurate quote, please contact our professional team at Trade License Zone to help you.

How to market a delivery services business

To grow your delivery services business in Dubai, follow these five tips:

Tip 1: Brand Identity

To establish yourself in the market, you must create a strong brand identity. This means that the logo, business cards, flyers, website, and all graphics align to show your corporate colours to set you apart in the marketplace. This boosts your visibility and allows you to generate broader awareness for your brand and delivery services business.

Tip 2: Social Media Marketing

Social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok are prime platforms for advertising your budding business. Here you can reach large audiences of potential customers through quality content and promotions. A social media marketing campaign is an important tool in a new business’ marketing arsenal.

Tip 3: Discounts

Promotions, coupons, discounts, and vouchers are fantastic ways to create awareness and attract new customers to your business. Some ideas for promotions can be free delivery promos, competitions for customers to win their orders for free, and can serve to reward loyal customers for their continued business.

Tip 4: Reviews

Share customer reviews on social media channels to boost your brand and highlight satisfied customers. This feedback helps build credibility and trust in new brands.

Tip 5: Local Events

Dubai is a city full of fun events. Participate in food festivals and local events to develop a strong community spirit. This also helps grow awareness of your business and attract new customers.

Working with Trade License Zone

When starting a delivery services business and getting a delivery services trade license in Dubai, the process can seem complicated if you’re unfamiliar with the UAE’s business setup regulations and visa application processes. Trade License Zone will save you from confusion, unnecessary delays or rejections and streamline your business setup in the UAE.

The professional team at Trade License Zone can get started once you provide us with some basic documentation and a little information about the nature of your company and business activities. Then, just sit back and let out team take care of the rest. We’ll manage your delivery service business trade license and visa applications, liaise with all the relevant government and local authorities, and report back when you’re ready to trade. It really is that simple.

Contact us to get a personalized quotation based on your business activity