How to Start a Restaurant in Dubai? Let’s Follow the Best Strategies

By Rajib Hasan -- Tuesday, 30 May, 2023
How to start a restaurant in Dubai

A restaurant is the best one to get more revenue in as short a time as possible. In this case, good management is required and follows some strategies. Dubai is a renowned business country. There are plenty of business resources there. Many gentle people come there for business purposes. In this case, the restaurant business can be the great key to earning more revenue. For this reason, a restaurant business beginner should know how to start a restaurant in Dubai

You should remember that many restaurant owners are performing there and applying different new rules to attract people. If you would like to do better performance in the UAE marketplace, then you must apply some creative strategies that attract people. But the most crucial thing is to find the best way to start a restaurant in UAE before starting a restaurant business.  

How to Start a Restaurant in Dubai? Can you Share Some Strategies?

Everyone knows Dubai is the ultimate business hub around the world. We have been told several times that the restaurant business is profitable, but it is not easy to reach success. It isn't easy to do in the UAE. If you have a better approach, a better start and follow the right strategy, then you may have a straightforward way to reach your goal.

However, we are going to refer to some crucial steps of how to start a restaurant business in Dubai. But what do you need to open a restaurant? Good question and bear with us. We will also let you know what are the legal requirements for opening a restaurant in Dubai. We are pretty sure that will help you a lot and will show you the right way to start a restaurant in Dubai. So, let's see the top steps to opening a restaurant that you need to do. 

  • Make sure a budget before starting a restaurant business
  • Decide location before opening a restaurant
  • Find competitor and their strategy
  • Document for startup of a restaurant in UAE 
  • Design restaurant layout and make it beauty  
  • Create a food menu
  • Get in touch with technology 
  • Recruit qualified restaurant staff

1.      Make Sure a Budget before Starting a Restaurant Business

Make Sure a Budget before Starting a Restaurant Business

Restaurants require a hefty investment. Before you start a restaurant, calculate your expense and make a structure for which purpose you need to spend. So, figure out the wasting expense zone and minimise the cost. However, cost minimisation is a last discussion, but you need to think first about how much money you need to invest in your restaurant startup. In this case, you require a sharp calculation by all aspects, such as

  • Restaurant business license
  • Rent or buy a new property
  • Food serving permission
  • Staff training program
  • Software for daily operations
  • Working capital
  • Cost of setting up the restaurant equipment.

These are the common things to invest whenever you intend to invest. These are the initial investments. We divide the restaurant investment by two things, such as fixed cost and running cost. Fixed cost includes buying a location, design, decoration, restaurant equipment, etc. 

On the other hand, running costs include employee salaries and wages, software monthly subscription costs, restaurant equipment costs, electricity bills, etc. If you get the actual concept about that, then you can invest in the right way. However, whatever you do, you must require money to start a restaurant in Dubai.   

2.      Decide Location before Opening a Restaurant

Decide Location before Opening a Restaurant

Location is one of the first considerations for all business startups. Dubai is home to over a hundred nationalities. Find a beautiful location where you have a chance to get more audiences. For this reason, you should research a market before freezing a location. You know well that business location is crucial in whether your restaurant may hit or miss amongst the tourists and Emirates. However, let's see some key factors that you should remember before selecting a restaurant business location.

  • Accessibility 
  • Customer Base
  • Visibility
  • Affordability
  • Proximity to Suppliers

Though there are some other factors, we have referred to some crucial things. There are many locations in UAE, but which do you prefer? We have given some locations in UAE, so select one and start your new journey.  

  • Jumeirah Residence 
  • Abu Dhabi
  • Dubai
  • Sharjah
  • Umm Al Qaiwain
  • Fujairah
  • Ajman
  • Ras Al Khaimah

3. You have to Know Your Budget before Starting a Restaurant Business

Dubai is a business hub, and it is an expensive city in the world. First of all, you should know how much does it cost to open a restaurant in Dubai. Basically, it is challenging to clarify specifically. It is because the cost depends on some crucial factors, such as area, size of the restaurant, food items, management system, restaurant design and decoration, etc. However, we are showing an example of the restaurant startup cost. 

If you want to rent a restaurant, you must pay the cost according to square foot or square meter. Suppose you are in DownTown of Dubai, and you have found a place for a restaurant size at 1500 square feet/140 square meters and a monthly fee of AED 60 000. 

On the other hand, if you choose another city like AL Barsha, Palm Jumeirah, etc. In this case, you may require more than that. So, wherever you open a restaurant in UAE, your budget should be AED 790 000 – 800 000. So, make sure your budget fixes a goal and invest in the right way to reach your goal.     

4.      Find Competitor and Their Strategy

Find Competitor and Their Strategy

Competitor analysis is a crucial factor for all businesses. Competitor analysis is a better restaurant marketing plan. For this reason, you have to think about who your competitor is. Those who are serving food like you, they are your competitors. Finding a competitor and competing with them is a challenge. 

Those who are successful restaurant owners, and those who are doing well in your targeted area, should find them. Collect some data, such as which strategy they follow, how long they have been in this field, monthly budget, food items, etc. The best way is to discuss it with them. Those who are doing great may follow their strategy and try to achieve the customer's trust by providing hygienic and delicious food.  

5.      Document for Startup of a Restaurant in UAE 

What are the legal requirements for opening a restaurant in Dubai? The document is a crucial thing to start a restaurant in UAE. But do you know what document you require to start a restaurant? You should remember that you should think about the legal documents before booking a slot in your selected location. In Dubai, you require two main types of documents to open a restaurant in Dubai

  • Trade license: 
  • Food license 

Trade License

In Dubai, a trade license is issued by the Department of Economic Development (DED). What document do I require to apply for a trade license in UAE? First of all, you have to apply by providing some crucial information, such as your business activity, business name, location, etc. Now complete your application and pay fees. So, wait for a week or a month or more than that; based on their policy, you will get it  

Food License 

If you have a food serving or restaurant business, then you must require a food license. What to do to get a food license in Dubai? Let's see what you need to get a food license in Dubai. You will need a food license that the Dubai municipality food safety department issues.

In this case, you have to apply online as a trader on FoodWatch and fill up the online application form. In this form, you must refer to your food items. It means what types of food you want to serve. Provide your personal details that will be needed for inspection. It is noted that you fill up all the mandatory fields by providing your crucial information and wait for the approval.

6.      Design Restaurant Layout with Fit-Out Contractors 

 Design Restaurant Layout with Fit-Out Contractors

Dubai is a business hub. Many people come to Dubai for different purposes. They sit in a restaurant to get refreshments and enjoy delicious and traditional food. Well, design and decoration is a smart restaurant strategy to attract customers and drive more sales. For this reason, restaurant design plays a crucial part. Interior design carries an aesthetic that blows the customer's mind. 

In this case, you have a better chance to get more orders and customers in your restaurant. But how to design a restaurant? Don't worry; Dubai is a business city; there are available restaurant fit-out contractors in Dubai. You can hire them and get a design idea and decorate your restaurant aesthetically. 

7.      Create a Food Menu

Create a Food Menu

The menu is a marketing strategy for the food business. Restaurant menu design involves restaurant food items. It means what kind of food you serve. It does not end here. Whenever designing a menu, you should decide on a layout. So that unknown people can easily understand what types of food you serve. Here are some creative ideas to create an eye-catching menu. 

  • Write all food items. 
  • Categories menu items.
  • Set your menu prices.
  • Create menu descriptions.
  • Design your restaurant menu.
  • Decide on a menu colour scheme.
  • Choose your restaurant menu fonts, spacing, and composition.

8.      Get In Touch With Technology 

In two days, you cannot avoid technology. The world is roaming with technology. You should use technology and make your restaurant digitalised. In this case, use any system by which you can manage your restaurant without technical interference. In this case, a restaurant POS system can be the best choice. Restaurant POS systems offer all-one solutions to manage any kind of restaurant. 

You will be able to manage inventory, kitchen, online orders, billing, QR scanner, online reservation, etc. There are many privileges of a restaurant POS system. Where will I get the best restaurant POS system in UAE? Don't worry; the restaurant POS system is in Dubai right now. Use it, completely minimise manual systems, enhance productivity, and get the benefits.   

9.      Recruit Qualified Restaurant Staff

Recruit Qualified Restaurant Staff

A good employee can change a business structure. Recruiting qualified restaurant staff can be a challenging task, but there are some strategies you can use to attract the right candidates. Creating a clear job description, using multiple job posting platforms, networking with industry professionals, offering competitive compensation, conducting thorough interviews, checking references, and providing training and development opportunities. These are all essential steps to finding and retaining qualified restaurant staff. By taking these steps, you can increase your chances of recruiting top talent who are a good fit for your team and can help your restaurant thrive. 

How Much Does It Cost To Start A Restaurant In Dubai?

How Much Does It Cost To Start A Restaurant In Dubai

How much does it take to start a restaurant? The cost of starting a restaurant in Dubai can vary significantly depending on several factors, such as the location, size, concept, cuisine, and the level of luxury you want to provide to your customers. However, on average, the cost to start a restaurant ranges from AED 790000-800000 AED. It is noted that this amount can be changed based on some factors that we have referred to above. 

This cost would include expenses such as rent for the commercial space, interior design and decoration, kitchen equipment, staff salaries, licensing, permits, and marketing costs. Additionally, you may also need to allocate funds for inventory, supplies, and utilities. It is noted that Dubai is known for its high-end dining scene, and if you plan to open a fine-dining restaurant or a luxury eatery, the startup cost can be significantly higher.

You do thorough research and create a detailed business plan before investing any money in a restaurant venture in Dubai. Working with a professional consultant who is familiar with the local laws and regulations can also help you navigate the complex process of opening a restaurant in the city.

How to Get Food and Beverage License in Dubai?

Getting a food and beverage license in Dubai can be a complex process. But with proper planning and preparation, it can be achievable. However, we have shared some crucial ideas on how to start a restaurant in UAE. In that section, you will get more about restaurant business documents and details of restaurant startups in Dubai. Alright, here we have referred to some essential steps involved in obtaining a food and beverage license in Dubai. So, let's see what cream answers are waiting for food and beverage business holders.

Determine the Type of License You Need

Different types of food and beverage licenses are available in Dubai, depending on the nature of your business. For example, if you plan to open a restaurant, you will need a restaurant license, while a food truck will require a mobile food license.

Find a Suitable Location

Finding an exact location is the best restaurant strategy to attract customers. You need to find a commercial space that meets the requirements of Dubai Municipality for food and beverage operations. You should select a location that has proper ventilation, drainage, and waste disposal facilities.

Submit Your Application

You can submit your food and beverage license application through the Dubai Municipality website. You will need to provide information such as your business plan, menu, and details of your proposed location.

Get the Necessary Approvals

Once you submit your application, you will need to get approvals from several government agencies, such as the Dubai Municipality, Dubai Civil Defense, and Dubai Electricity and Water Authority. You may also need to get approval from the Dubai Health Authority if you plan to serve specific types of food.

Pay the Required Fees

There are several fees associated with obtaining a food and beverage license in Dubai, including application, inspection, and licensing fees.

Obtain Your License

Once you have completed all the necessary steps and paid the required fees, you will receive your food and beverage license. Make sure to display your license prominently in your establishment as proof of your compliance with the regulations.

How Can I Start Coffee Shop Business in Dubai?

Before starting a coffee shop business most people are scared of how to start a coffee shop business in Dubai. It is a common question on behalf of such people who want to start a coffee shop business in the UAE. One unique approach to starting a coffee shop business in Dubai could be to focus on creating a cultural fusion experience. Dubai is a melting pot of cultures and cuisines, and by incorporating elements from different cultures into your coffee shop, you could attract a diverse customer base.

For example, you could serve famous Arabic coffee and popular international coffee. You could also incorporate flavors and ingredients from different cultures into your pastries and snacks. You could design your coffee shop to reflect a mix of traditional and modern aesthetics, incorporating elements of both Dubai's rich history and its cosmopolitan vibe.

By creating a unique cultural fusion experience, you could set your coffee shop apart from the competition and appeal to a wide range of customers in Dubai.

Final Thought

Everybody starts a business from their fancy. The restaurant business means the food business. We come to the restaurant to get delicious food and pass the time. It is a famous business platform and profitable also. For this reason, it is one of the most competitive business platforms. That's why to save the restaurant costs, a business owner must know how to start a small restaurant with no money and which strategy they should follow. 

However, the coffee shop business is a type of restaurant. It is also a competitive business in Dubai. So, before starting a coffee shop business, learn about new things and find a way to achieve success as soon as possible. Follow the above direction and reach your destination. So, cherish your dream, get in touch with us, and proceed.