Home > Entrepreneurship > How To Start A Daycare Business In Dubai

How To Start A Daycare Business In Dubai

Nov 1, 2023 | Entrepreneurship

Are you considering starting a daycare centre in Dubai? With the growing demand for quality childcare services in this bustling city, it’s a decision that could be successful. However, stepping into this business venture means you’ll need to stick to specific regulations, plan meticulously, and know your market.

We provide you with all the vital information on how to start a daycare business in Dubai, making sure you’re prepared with everything from the necessary skills, steps, paperwork, costs, and more. By the time you’ve finished reading, you’ll be ready to take the first steps in creating a rewarding and successful daycare centre in Dubai.

The Process To Setup A daycare Business In Dubai

The increasing number of working parents and the UAE government’s push for more women in the workforce make a daycare business a viable venture in Dubai. However, meticulous planning and adherence to specific regulations are required.

Your initial step is crafting a comprehensive business plan, including a thorough market analysis, financial projections, and a clear depiction of your business’s structure and operations.

Location and Licensing

The selection of a suitable location is vital. It should be safe, secure, and ideally nestled in a residential area with excellent transportation options. A nearby play area or playground is a bonus. Once you’ve selected a location, it must comply with the regulations set by the KHDA (Knowledge and Human Development Authority) and the Dubai Municipality.

Obtaining a trade licence is a prerequisite. This process involves securing approval from local authorities, including the municipality and civil defence. After obtaining initial approval from the Department of Economic Development (DED), you’ll need to apply for a permit from the KHDA.

To initiate your daycare centre in Dubai, securing a business licence is a fundamental step. This involves getting your trade name approved and registered with the Dubai Municipality. The Ministry of Social Affairs oversees this crucial document that legalises your operations. If you’re established in a free zone, the KHDA will handle your licence.

In addition to the business licence, certificates from the Dubai Municipality and Public Health Department are required. These validate that your daycare centre adheres to the necessary health and safety standards.

When applying for these licences and certificates, several documents are required. These encompass educational profiles of your staff, passport copies, and police clearance certificates. These are essential to demonstrate that your team is competent and reliable.

Screenshot Of KDHA Website

(Source: https://web.khda.gov.ae/en/)

Hiring Staff

Hiring a qualified centre manager and staff with a bachelor’s degree or professional certification in managing an early learning centre is crucial. Your staff should not only have the necessary qualifications and experience, but they should also be passionate about teaching and working with children. Conduct thorough interviews, review background checks, and reference checks to ensure you’re hiring the right people.

Before you can open your daycare centre, you’ll need to obtain a trade licence from the authorities. The process involves:

  • Creating an account on the official website.
  • Filling out the service application.
  • Uploading the required documents.
  • Making the necessary payments.


Equipping your daycare centre with the necessary items to facilitate the children’s development and education is another step. You’ll also need to develop a curriculum and a childcare manual to provide parents with essential information about the centre and establish trust.

Specialised equipment is also necessary for a daycare centre. This includes:

  • Age-appropriate toys.
  • Books.
  • Educational materials.
  • Furniture.
  • Playground equipment.

If your daycare centre is catering to infants, you’ll also need items like cribs, cots, and feeding chairs.

Preventing the spread of diseases and providing proper nutrition are key to ensuring the well-being of the children in the world under your care.

Banking and Costs

Opening a corporate bank account is essential for financial transactions. The requirements for opening a bank account for your new daycare centre can vary depending on the bank, so it’s essential to choose a financial institution that suits your business needs.

The costs involved in starting a daycare business in Dubai include licensing and visa fees, staff costs, insurance, and premises costs.

However, setting up in a free zone can be a cost-effective option, offering benefits such as 100% company ownership and tax exemptions.

Lastly, marketing your daycare business is essential for acquiring clients and building a reputation. The success of your daycare business will hinge on the quality of your services, the reputation of your facility, and your ability to attract and retain clients. Providing a safe, caring and nurturing environment for children and maintaining open communication with kids and parents will be key to your success.

Insurance For Daycare Centres

Insurance for your daycare centre is another crucial aspect. While health insurance providers generally cover daycare operations, it’s vital to verify the coverage to understand which operations are included.

If you’re considering a franchise model for your daycare centre, understanding the franchise agreement is crucial. This includes details about franchise fees and royalties. This agreement defines your relationship with the franchisor and what support you can expect, such as marketing and access to childcare management software.

Lastly, if you plan to use daycare management software like Illumine, understanding the terms of use and how it can enhance your operations is important. This software can aid with digital daycare management, attendance tracking, billing, and parent communication, making it a valuable tool for your own school or daycare centre.

Screenshot Of Illume App Website For Daycare

(Source: https://illumine.app)

Things to Keep in Mind Before Starting a Daycare Center in Dubai

Starting a daycare centre in Dubai is a promising business venture, given the city’s bustling economy and the increasing demand for quality childcare services. However, it’s not a decision you should take lightly. There are several key things to consider and steps to follow to ensure your child’s daycare centre’s success and compliance with local regulations.

Choosing A Daycare Type

Firstly, you’ll need to decide on the type of facility you want to establish. Will it be a home-based daycare or a separate location? Each option has its pros and cons, and your choice will depend on your resources, goals, and the specific needs of your target market.

The age range of children you plan to cater to is another crucial factor. This decision will influence everything from the design and layout of your early education facility to the type of staff you hire and the educational materials you need.

Safety and security precautions are paramount in a daycare setting. You’ll need to ensure that your facility is child-proofed, equipped with necessary safety equipment and facilities, and adheres to all local safety regulations. This includes having an on-site first-aid room and obtaining approvals from the municipality, Civil Defense, and Public Health Department.

Creating A Successful Business Plan

Creating a solid business plan is another essential step. Your business plan should include:

  • A company overview.
  • Market analysis.
  • Financial forecasts.
  • Market research.

It should also provide a detailed description of your daycare centre, including its location, services, and unique selling points.

The location of your daycare centre is crucial. It should be easily accessible to working parents and located in a residential area with good transportation options. A nearby play area or playground is also a plus.

Insurance is another important consideration. It’s recommended to obtain insurance coverage for all possible risks, including accidents and third-party liability.

Finally, you’ll need to write policies for your daycare business. These policies should inform parents about the operations and guidelines of the centre, including information on vaccinations, illnesses, drop-off and pick-up times, curricula, and field trips.

How Much Does it Cost to Get a Daycare Licence in Dubai?

The cost of getting a daycare business licence in Dubai averages between USD 3,267 (AED 12,000) and USD 5,446 (AED 20,000). However, this isn’t a fixed fee, as the total cost can significantly depend on various factors, such as licensing and visa fees, staffing and insurance expenses, and the cost of the centre’s location.

To simplify the process, you can work with a company formation specialist like Virtuzone. We can assist in streamlining the licensing process and provide support in areas such as tax and accounting, legal services, and employment solutions. This collaboration can make starting a daycare business in Dubai quicker, simpler, and potentially more cost-effective.

Screenshot Of Dubai Municipality Website

(Source: https://www.dm.gov.ae/#)

Other Costs Involved In Setting Up Daycare Center In Dubai

While the daycare licence is a significant part of the initial investment, it’s not the only expense. The physical premises of your daycare centre will also contribute to the overall cost. The facility should ideally be located in a residential area for convenience and must meet specific requirements. For instance, it should have a minimum area of 2,000 sqft, necessary amenities like WiFi and air conditioning, CCTV cameras for security, at least one daycare room, safety equipment, and a separate playroom.

The cost of staffing is another considerable expense. Comprehensive interviewing and background checks are essential to ensure the safety and well-being of teachers and the children.

The cost of equipment, including books, toys, food, and playground equipment, should also be factored into your budget.

Insurance is a necessary expense to safeguard your children and your business from potential risks and liabilities. It’s crucial to choose a policy that covers all possible risks for the children’s safety.

The total cost of starting a daycare business will depend on several factors, including the number of children you plan to accommodate and the operating hours of your facility. A comprehensive business plan that includes the following is crucial for accurate budgeting. These are:

  • Financial projections
  • Marketing strategies
  • Operational details

How profitable is owning a daycare?

The profits you can expect from owning a daycare centre vary greatly, depending on several factors. However, the daycare industry is on the up, with a growth rate expected to be 3.8% between 2020 and 2027.

Plus, the demand for daycare services is predicted to increase due to the rising cost of living and more families with two incomes. So, there’s plenty of potential for growth and profitability in Dubai.

Your income will fluctuate based on the location, demand for services, and the size of your daycare centre. You’ll often find higher profits in densely populated areas near universities or in neighbourhoods with a high cost of living, as you can charge higher tuition rates.

The number of children enrolled is another major factor affecting profitability. Larger centres typically have higher income rates. If you’re running a home-based daycare centre, you’ll likely have lower operating costs, but you can still turn a tidy profit. On the flip side, commercial daycare centres, while having more expenses, have the potential to generate higher profits.

Wrapping Up Your Daycare Business Journey

As we wrap up, starting a daycare business in Dubai is a big commitment. It requires careful planning, thorough research and strict adherence to local regulations. But if you handle it well, it can become a rewarding and profitable venture.

You’ll need to navigate the complexities of setting up such a business, from securing the right location and permits to hiring qualified staff and crafting a compelling business model. With a growing demand for quality childcare services in Dubai, your investment could yield significant returns.

Your success will come down to the quality of your services, the reputation of your facility, and if your business can attract and retain clients. Strive to deliver an unparalleled experience for children and parents, ensuring your daycare and nursery business thrives in Dubai’s vibrant landscape.

Contact Us

Start your business today