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Updated November 2022

Saudi Arabia is currently open for tourism and international travel to or from the kingdom has been largely restored. For those wishing to visit Saudi Arabia, visas will once again be issued by the authorities to accommodate the various needs of various travellers.

Here is everything you need to know about Saudi visas (فيزا السعودية); what types of available visas, which countries are eligible, as well as the prevailing restrictions.

Do I need a visa to visit Saudi Arabia?

For most countries, yes. 

Nationals belonging to the following five countries do not require a visa to visit Saudi Arabia and may use National ID cards to enter the Kingdom:
  • Bahrain
  • Kuwait
  • Oman
  • United Arab Emirates

New Saudi Arabia visa scheme for GCC residents

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has announced a new visa scheme for GCC residents with the primary objective of boosting tourism.

As stated by the Saudi Minister of Tourism Ahmed Al-Khateeb, keeping in mind the aim of KSA’s Vision 2030 to increase the tourism sector’s contribution to gross domestic product to 10 percent, the Kingdom has now planned to invest up to $200 billion and welcome around 100 million visitors by 2030.

According to the latest visa rules GCC residents now have the option to apply for an eVisa through the Visit Saudi online portal, which enables them to visit Saudi for both Umrah and tourism purposes.

Hence, the visitors flying to Saudi Arabia are no longer required to go through the hassle of visiting an embassy in person to apply for a visa, making the visa application process simple and more straightforward.

Requirements

To be eligible to apply for the Saudi eVisa, GCC residents must meet the following conditions:

  • The GCC resident’s occupation must be among the eligible occupations listed on the online portal.
  • The residency document must be valid for three (3) months.
  • The passport must be valid for at least six (6) months
  • A parent application is mandatory for children under the age of 18.

Application process

To apply for the Saudi eVisa, GCC residents need to follow the steps given below:

  • Visit the MOFA website and log in to your account.
  • Fill out the required information.
  • Upload the required eVisa documents

Once approved, you will receive your Saudi eVisa via email.

Visa extension policy

Saudi Arabia has declared that single-entry visit visas now have a three-month stay limit. Additionally, they prolong the period of stay for people with transit visas. Now, they are free to stay for up to 96 hours, and their stay is good for three months. For all purposes, single-entry visit visas will be subject to this change.

Currently, multiple-entry visas are valid for 90 days, whereas single-entry visas for family visits are only valid for 30 days.

Is Saudi Arabia open for tourism?

Saudi Arabia is currently open to travellers with valid tourist visas. International arrivals will now be allowed entry into Saudi Arabia, regardless of their vaccination status. Additionally, arrivals are no longer required to show a vaccination certificate for entry.

At present, Saudi Arabia is issuing tourist visas to travellers from 49 countries, namely the United States, Canada, Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Greece, Holland, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Latvia, Finland, Germany, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Norway, Russia, Portugal, San Marino, Romania, Ukraine, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Sweden, Brunei, China (including Hong Kong and Macao), Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Kazakhstan, the United Kingdom. 

Types of available Saudi visas (فيزا السعودية)

For travellers travelling from eligible countries, the following visas are available.

Business visa

Travellers looking to enter the Kingdom for business purposes may apply for a Saudi business visa on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) website. Among the required documents are:

  • A valid passport (with blank pages)
  • Passport photographs
  • Completed application form
  • A letter of invitation from the sponsor company in Saudi Arabia that is approved by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • A letter from your employer confirming your employment and upcoming trip
  • Any other required documents depending on the applicant’s country of origin

Religious visa

Religious visas accommodate Muslims around the world looking to embark on the pilgrims of Umrah and Hajj. These visas allow foreign pilgrims access to the Holy Cities of Makkah and Madinah. For both Umrah and Hajj, travellers may contact the nearest Saudi consulate but are encouraged to appoint a licensed travel agent to assist them in arranging their pilgrimage.

Umrah visa requirements

  • A completed original Umrah visa application form. 
  • One recent passport-size colour photograph with a white background should be attached to the application form.
  • Passports should be valid for at least 6 months from the date of submission of the application form.
  • Confirmed and non-refundable airline ticket. Departure from Saudi Arabia should be within two weeks from the date of entry.
  • Women and children should be accompanied by a husband/father or a male relative (Mahram). Women aged 45 years old or older are allowed to go without a Mahram if travelling with an organized group or family.
  • A vaccination certificate against Meningococcal Meningitis should be attached. Please note that the current vaccination requirements also extend to the COVID-19 vaccination.

Umrah Visa: How to Apply for Visa to Perform the Pilgrimage?

Umrah visa is provided free of charge but please note that applicants may be required to pay for other visa-related services. Please consult your official Umrah travel agent for the full details.

Hajj visa requirements

Please note that Hajj visas are only being issued from Mid-Shawwal until the 25th Dhual-Qa’dah of each year. You can refer to our dedicated Hajj visa article below.

Hajj Visa 2022: How to Apply for Visa to Perform the Pilgrimage?

Hajj visa is provided free of charge but please note that applicants may be required to pay for other visa-related services. Please consult your official Umrah travel agent for the full details.

Tourist visa/eVisa

Saudi Arabia tourist visa allows entry to the country for non-essential purposes. Additionally, all COVID‑19 restrictions for travel to Saudi Arabia have been lifted. Passengers are no longer required to hold a COVID‑19 vaccination certificate or a COVID‑19 test result to enter the country. Quarantine restrictions have also been lifted. 

Saudi Arabia Tourist Visa 2022: How to Apply For eVisa to Saudi Arabia?

Requirements

  • The passport must be valid for no less than six months from the date of entry into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (except for citizens of the United States of America, they may enter as long as the passport is valid, regardless of the validity)
  • The age should not be less than 18 years old. For those under 18 years old, the applicant is allowed to enter but requires the presence of a guardian. (First degree: father, mother, brother, sister, grandfather and grandmother)
  • Having insurance that covers the costs of treatment from infection with COVID-19 during the period of stay in the Kingdom (included in the tourist visa).
  • It’s not required to provide a negative result for an approved PCR test or an approved Rapid Antigen Test before coming to the Kingdom.
  • Passengers travelling to Saudi Arabia must download and register on the Tawakkalna app on arrival.

Visa on arrival

Visa on arrival will be available in line with the following:

  • Applicants are travelling from one of the eligible countries (detailed below)
  • Residents of the UK, US, and EU can apply for a visa on arrival in the Kingdom.
  • Holders of a valid tourist or business visa from the UK, US or one of the Schengen Agreement countries continue to be able to apply for a Visa on Arrival, provided that it has been used at least once to enter the county granting the visa.

Eligible countries

North America

Canada, the United States

Europe

Switzerland, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Monaco, Andorra, Russia, Malta, Montenegro, San Marino, Ukraine, UK, Portugal, Poland, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Romania, Slovakia, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Spain, Sweden, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Norway, Luxembourg, France, Germany, Greece, Slovenia, Holland, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia

Asia

Brunei, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea, Kazakhstan, and China (including Hong Kong and Macau).              

Oceania

Australia, New Zealand

Travellers outside the eligible countries list may apply for a consulate visa through Saudi embassies and consulates. You can locate the nearest Saudi consulate here.

Family visit visa

Those wishing to visit families and relatives residing in Saudi Arabia, they may take advantage of a special Family Visit Visa afforded by the Kingdom.

Saudi Arabia Family Visit Visa 2022: Everything To Know About Family Visit Visa Application on MOFA

Requirements

Requirements are as follows:

  • Copy of sponsor Iqama holder’s passport.
  • Valid International Passport (Minimum 6 months validity remaining) for the applicant.
  • Copy of the Iqama or residency permit for the sponsor
  • 4 passport-size photos.
  • Apostilled copy of the National ID card of the applicant.
  • Marriage certificate which you might need to apostille.

Those residing in the US may apply for the visa by:

  • Applying in person at the embassy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
  • Via Mail to the Embassy’s address: 601 New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington DC, 20037.
  • Through the Embassy’s authorized travel agencies.

Residence visa or work permits

Work permits for foreigners are applied for by the employer with the proper government bodies – Interior and Labor & Social Affairs Ministries. Anyone who wishes to stay in the Kingdom for more than three months must have a residence permit (Iqama). This is issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and is valid for two years.

Foreign employees’ dependents are also generally given residence visas, which however do not allow employees to seek employment. However, exit visas to leave the Kingdom are required for holders of residence visas.

Requirements

  • Original passport valid for no less than six (6) months, with at least two (2) successive empty visa pages
  • A visa referral note, indicating the number and date of the visa, issued by the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs or either of its branches in Jeddah or Dammam.
  • Proof of kinship when accompanied by a family member: for spouses, a copy of the marriage certificate; for children, a copy of the birth certificate. 
  • The age of the accompanying child may not exceed eighteen (18) years; accompanying daughters must be single.
  • For non-U.S. citizens, a copy of the green card or other documented proof of legal residence in the U.S.
  • medical report in three copies, along with all lab results, and three (3) passport-size coloured photographs on white background.  A medical report must be issued by a licensed physician certifying the applicant is free of contagious diseases. Physicians must sign each copy of the medical report indicating their license number and address. Medical reports must be no more than three (3) months past the date of issuance.
  • Children under the age of sixteen (16) do not need a medical report.
  • Minors (under 18 years) travelling alone, or with one parent, must submit a notarized letter in Arabic or English signed by a parent or a legal guardian.

Those residing in the US may apply for the visa by:

  • Applying in person at the embassy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
  • Via Mail to the Embassy’s address: 601 New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington DC, 20037.
  • Through the Embassy’s authorized travel agencies.

Transit visa

The transit visa allows individuals to pass through the Kingdom and is applicable for short stays of over 12 hours, providing transit visas. It is available to applicants of any nationality, and it can be obtained by using the MOFA e-service visa platform.

Requirements

  • A valid original passport of a minimum of six months.
  • A residence permit from the country you are applying from.
  • A passport-sized colored photograph.
  • A Saudi Visa (فيزا السعودية) questionnaire filled out and signed.
  • The declaration of Saudi laws signed.
  • Proof of ticket booking, confirming your stay-over in Saudi Arabia.
  • Printed visa application submitted through the e-portal.

How to apply for a Saudi Arabia visa?

Through online 

Once you have prepared all the documents and prerequisites needed to prove your eligibility, you can apply for the Saudi eVisa by these 3 simple steps:

Through offline 

If you are unable to apply for the visa online, you can directly visit the Saudi Embassy in your country and proceed with the application process. Please note that different embassies have different procedures, so make sure to be familiar with them prior to your visit to the embassy. 

You can find the list of Saudi Embassies around the globe here

Saudi visa fees 

The Saudi visa (فيزا السعودية) fees for different types of visas are:

  • Tourist eVisa- SAR 535 (USD 142)
  • Tourist visa on arrival- SAR 480 SAR (USD 154)
  • Business visa (single entry)- SAR 200 (USD 53)
  • Business visa (multiple entry)- SAR 500 (USD 133)
  • Work, Resident, Transit and Student visa- SAR 50 (USD 13)
  • Hajj and Umrah visa- Free 

Restrictions

There are strict restrictions in place pertaining to certain items being transported into the Saudi Arabian borders. The items are as follows:

  • alcoholic beverages 
  • pork and pork products 
  • prohibited drugs and narcotics 
  • firearms, explosives, edged weapons 
  • pornographic materials
  • Furthermore, possession of psychoactive substances, when entering the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is illegal unless authorized by a Government agency.


Please refer here prior to your trip to Saudi Arabia.

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