How Can I Get a Food Truck License in Dubai?

How Can I Get a Food Truck License in Dubai?

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Food trucks have become a popular dining option in Dubai, offering a wide variety of delicious and convenient meals to residents and tourists alike. From gourmet burgers to authentic street food, food trucks in Dubai cater to a wide variety of tastes and preferences. However, before you can hit the streets with your own food truck, you need to obtain a food truck license in Dubai. 

Dubai is known for its high standards when it comes to food safety and hygiene, and this is no exception for food trucks. The Dubai Municipality has strict regulations in place to ensure that all food trucks meet these standards before they can operate. 

From the cleanliness of the truck to the quality of ingredients used, every aspect of the food truck business is closely monitored to protect the health and well-being of consumers. 

Here we will guide you on how to obtain a food truck license in Dubai, what are the standards you need to maintain, and requirements that aspiring food truck owners need to fulfill. 

Why Start a Food Truck Business in Dubai? 

Starting a food truck business in Dubai can be highly rewarding due to several benefits and opportunities that the city offers. Here are some key reasons: 

1. Low Investment, High Return 

Compared to traditional restaurants, food trucks require a significantly lower initial investment. This translates to quicker returns on investment to allow you to see profits sooner and reinvest in your business growth. 

2. Mobility 

This is a huge advantage. You can move your truck around to different parts of the city, finding areas with high foot traffic or catering to events. 

3. Foodie Culture 

Dubai has a large and diverse population that is always interested in trying new and exciting foods. This is a fantastic opportunity to introduce a unique cuisine or concept. 

4. Event Opportunities 

Dubai hosts numerous events, festivals, and markets throughout the year, which provide lucrative opportunities for food trucks to operate in high-traffic areas and generate substantial revenue. 

5. Simpler Operations 

Food trucks typically have a smaller menu and less staff than a full-service restaurant, which can streamline operations and potentially reduce overhead costs. 

6. Become a Brand 

Your food truck itself can be a marketing tool. With creative branding and a catchy concept, you can build a loyal following and establish a strong brand identity. 

7. Technology Integration 

Dubai is known for its advanced infrastructure and tech-savvy population. Food trucks can leverage technology for online ordering, mobile payments, and social media marketing to enhance customer experience and drive sales. 

Which License is Required to Start a Food Truck Business in Dubai 

To start a food truck business in Dubai, you will need a trade license issued by the Department of Economic Development (DED). The specific type of trade license you need depends on your business operations. 

  • Professional License is typically suited for smaller businesses, including food trucks with a limited scope of operations. It may have limitations on the number of employees or business activities. 
  • Commercial License offers more flexibility for larger businesses and allows for a wider range of commercial activities. However, it typically comes with a higher cost compared to a professional license. 

Requirements to Start a Food Truck Business in Dubai 

Starting a food truck business in Dubai involves meeting specific requirements to ensure compliance with local regulations. Here are the basic requirements: 

  • Business Plan & Approvals  
  • Licenses & Permits 
  • HACCP Certification 
  • Location Permits 

How to Obtain a Food Truck License in Dubai? 

Here is a step-by-step process to help you obtain a food truck license in Dubai: 

1. Craft a Business Plan 

Outline your food truck concept, menu, target market, financial projections, and marketing strategy. This plan will be crucial for securing approvals. 

2. Trade Name Approval 

Choose a business name and get it approved by the Department of Economic Development (DED). Also, submit your business plan to the DED for review and get their initial go-ahead. 

3. Obtain HACCP Certification 

This internationally recognized certification ensures your food handling practices adhere to the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point standards. You’ll need to implement a HACCP plan in your food truck and get it certified by an accredited body. 

4. Secure Dubai Municipality Approvals 

The Dubai Municipality needs to approve your food truck’s design and ensure it meets its health and safety regulations. They will also likely inspect your planned central kitchen facility if you won’t be preparing food directly on the truck. 

5.. Finalize Your Location Strategy 

Decide where you plan to operate your food truck. You will need permits from the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) for public spaces or agreements with private property owners for designated parking areas. 

6. Trade License Application 

Submit your business plan to the DED. They will assess its viability and grant you the initial go-ahead to proceed with obtaining the necessary licenses. Provide necessary documents, including  

  • Completed application forms 
  • Copies of your passport and visa 
  • Passport-sized photographs 
  • Business plan 
  • DED approval 
  • HACCP certification 
  • Food truck design and layout approval 
  • Proof of location permits (if applicable) 

7. Acquire a Suitable Food Truck 

This involves purchasing a commercially registered vehicle and outfitting it with the necessary equipment to prepare and serve your food according to safety standards. 

8. Final Approvals & License 

With DED approval and other certifications in place, apply for your official trade license from the DED. The specific type (commercial or professional) will depend on your business activities.  

Consider consulting a business setup specialist in Dubai at Shuraa Business Setup. They can guide you through the process and ensure you meet all the requirements. 

What is the Cost of a Food Truck License in Dubai? 

The cost of a food truck license in Dubai generally starts from AED 12,999. However, the actual cost of the license may vary depending on company name registration, license issuance, a court sign, stamp fees, Tasheel service fees (government service processing), and RTA (Roads and Transport Authority) charges. 

There might be additional fees involved depending on the complexity of your business setup, like the number of visas you require. Therefore, we recommend consulting Shuraa Business Setup expert for more accurate cost estimate. 

Let Shuraa Handle the Paperwork 

Starting a food truck business in Dubai is a great idea with lots of potential. The city’s lively food scene, growing tourism, and supportive rules make it a fantastic place to launch a food truck. However, the process of setting up food truck business can be tricky, with lots of paperwork and legal steps. This is where professional help can make a significant difference. 

Shuraa Business Setup is here to help you every step of the way. Our experts will assist you with company registration, getting the right licenses and approvals, handling paperwork, PRO services, visa assistance, and much more. We make the process easy and stress-free, so you can focus on creating great food and building your business. 

Connect with Shuraa today and begin the exciting adventure of running a successful food truck in Dubai. 

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