Why Location Hunting Is Necessary Before Filming in Dubai and Abu Dhabi

5 Feb


Why Location Hunting Is Necessary Before Filming in Dubai and Abu Dhabi

Location scouting is like the treasure hunt of video production, where the right spot can turn your project into cinematic gold or leave it feeling lacklustre. However, how do the pros work their magic in finding these hidden gems?

Here at UAEFilmPermit, we have gone through the process on numerous occasions, and we have more than a few tips to share!   

In this exciting post, we are diving deep into location scouting. We will unravel the mystery behind its crucial role in creating remarkable videos and share some insider tips to help you uncover the perfect setting for your next project!

Why Is It So Important?

Selecting the perfect location is essential to crafting an extraordinary masterpiece. This choice has the power to shape the very essence of your video, dictating its ambience and dictating the kinds of shots you can capture.

Furthermore, the pre-production phase revolves around tailoring the shoot to reflect the mood and setting in the script or the narrative. That's why directors and producers invest substantial effort in the quest for an ideal setting.

Nevertheless, that's just the beginning—there are myriad other facets through which a location in the UAE can either elevate your video to greatness or shroud it in mediocrity. Let's explore these intriguing dimensions in more detail.

Read more on what makes Dubai ideal for movie production


Lighting within a location holds the potential to be the ultimate video enhancer or its worst detractor. In instances where the lighting falls short of perfection, you are poised to invest substantial resources in post-production adjustments. There are moments, however, when even the most skilful editing endeavours may remain futile when faced with deplorable lighting conditions.


When it comes to selecting a location, striking the right balance in terms of size is critical. Your chosen space should be capacious enough to house your crew and equipment comfortably. However, beware of the extremes, as too snug and overly vast locations can influence your production budget and operations. 

Moreover, the importance of props and backdrops in establishing the video's ambience cannot be overstated. It is imperative to ensure they harmonise seamlessly with the chosen location. Take, for instance, the scenario of shooting a corporate video; a site flooded with excessive brightness might clash with the sober tone necessitated by a corporate setting, where bold colours might not strike the right chord.


The auditory landscape of your chosen location holds tremendous significance and has the potential to either elevate or undermine your video's quality. It is imperative to ascertain that the space possesses favourable acoustics, free from excessive noise, as unwelcome sound intrusions can spell disaster for your production.

An Important Part of Your Permit Approval! 

As far as filming in Dubai and Abu Dhabi goes, locations are a huge part of the filming permit approval process. The UAE has some strict regulations when it comes to filming historical, cultural, military and public sights. If you are planning on filming at any of these, you will need to do some thorough planning as proper permits need to be issued for them. 

Let's see how this process usually goes and how we can help you with it!

How To Choose the Right Location

Having grasped the pivotal role of selecting the perfect location, let's delve into some valuable pointers for pinpointing the ideal setting for your project!

Have a Budget

Your initial step should involve establishing a budget for your project and ensuring that the chosen location falls comfortably within those financial boundaries. While the location is unquestionably a vital component, it is crucial to remember that it is just one of the multifaceted expenses of video production.

You must also factor in costs associated with equipment, compensating the cast, post-production editing, prop procurement, and all other elements intertwined with bringing your video to life. Balancing the budget across all these essential aspects is a prudent strategy.

What Do You Need?

When a director embarks on a production journey, they often carry a vivid vision of how to breathe life into their project. The art of location scouting is the bridge that transforms that vision into tangible reality, requiring the discovery of the perfect setting.

Occasionally, you could readily find a building or a set that effortlessly mirrors your story's essence. However, in other instances, the challenge lies in identifying a space that can be moulded and tailored by the production team to align with the narrative's requirements. It is a delicate dance between creativity and resourcefulness.

When it comes to the UAE, you should also think about the cultural meaning of the site and if there are any privacy policies that you should be mindful of!

Don't Forget the Extras

While engaged in the quest for the ideal location, it is imperative to recognise the often-overlooked extras that can make or break your production. Consider vital factors like ample parking, convenient power outlets, and accessible restroom facilities.

Equally crucial is guaranteeing that the location possesses the capacity to comfortably house both your crew and the array of equipment required for your shoot. A harmonious marriage of convenience and functionality is the key to a successful location choice.

Think Weather

Weather is yet another critical factor to weigh in when making your location selection. If your production involves outdoor shooting, it is essential to pinpoint a location blessed with favourable weather conditions for the majority of your shooting schedule.

For indoor shoots, securing a space that's not only suitable but also available for the entire duration of your production is of paramount importance. Weather and availability are two distinct challenges but equally crucial in the grand scheme of location scouting.

Don't Be Afraid To Seek an Assist

For those who lack extensive experience in video production or operation with a compact team, juggling all the essential tasks, including the quest for the perfect location, can prove to be quite the challenge.

In such situations, enlisting the aid of a film location scouting agency can be a game-changer. By bringing in expert help, you can streamline the entire production process. This allows you to concentrate on preparing your cast and coordinating other crew members while your dedicated scout tirelessly hunts down the ideal location tailored to your specific needs. It is a strategic move that can significantly simplify your production journey!

UAE FilmPermit has set itself apart in this domain, and we are now one of the top choices in this area for the UAE. 

Get Your Permits in Order

Even if you are convinced you have stumbled upon the ultimate location gem, it is a wise move to reach out to your local film commission or permitting office.

Almost every location in the UAE typically demands a filming permit, and certain places may come with specific regulations or limitations on what is permissible during filming.

To ensure a smooth and secure location, always arm yourself with the necessary permit. Having it in your possession demonstrates your legitimacy as a filmmaker and enhances your chances of securing exclusive rights to the coveted site. 

It is the golden key to a hassle-free filming experience.

How UAE Film Permit Helps

A dependable partner who can assist in securing permits and approvals is an invaluable asset! In the UAE, the role of the film permit agency is pivotal in simplifying the process of obtaining a filming permit. Here at FilmPermit, we offer indispensable assistance to production companies by expediting the acquisition of required permits and approvals for filming within the country, all while ensuring strict compliance with local laws and regulations.

We are also an established partner that will help you hunt down all the perfect movie locations that you need for the production.  

Teaming up with a film permit agency not only conserves time and resources but also guarantees that all the necessary permits and approvals are squared away before kicking off any filming endeavours in the UAE.


The importance of location scouting cannot be overstated. It is the cornerstone upon which your creative vision takes form, and it plays a pivotal role in aligning your production with your script or narrative. Directors and producers invest substantial time and effort in this quest for the perfect setting, understanding that the location can either elevate their video to greatness or obscure its potential.

For those navigating the complexities of video production, especially those with limited experience or resources, enlisting the expertise of a film location scouting agency can be a game-changing move. It streamlines the process, allowing you to focus on the creative aspects while experts hunt down the ideal location tailored to your specific needs.

Moreover, let's not forget the essential role of permits and approvals, a vital step in ensuring a smooth and secure location for your shoot. 

Working with a reliable partner like UAE FilmPermit can simplify the often intricate permitting process, helping you navigate the regulations and secure exclusive rights to your chosen site. Connect with us today, and discover why we are the agency of choice for the filmmaking industry in the UAE!