Saudi Arabia Tourist Visa – How To Get Yours Today
Saudi Arabia is one of the most influential countries in the middle east, however up until now its tourism industry has been extremely limited. This is all about to change with the proposal of a Saudi Tourist Visa which will come into effect on the 27th of September 2019.
Saudi Arabia has announced radical plans to introduce a Saudi Tourist Visa scheme to transform both its economy and the global perception of the insular country. This is part of a major drive to boost foreign visitors to the country in a bid to further grow its economy and move away from a reliance on typical oil and gas income generators.
Previously only travellers from surrounding states or those with relatives within the country, Islamic pilgrims and work/business trips were allowed to apply for visas to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
For more information on how to apply for a work/business visa click here.
The country is host to five UNESCO world heritage sites, with tourism currently only making up 3% of the economy. However, plans have been announced to increase this number to 10% and double the amount of tourist to 30 million per year, to help stabilise the economy which is notoriously known to rely on it’s oil economy.
In attempt to replicate the great success seen in the United Arab Emirates, which saw huge capital investment through the use of tourism and western holiday makers.
1.Where can I apply for Saudi Tourist Visa’s?
There are multiple ways to apply for Saudi Tourist Visa, depending on whether you require a Saudi e-visa or would like to go through the Saudi embassy.
For information regarding a Saudi e-visa, carry on reading the article below.
For information regarding a visa issued at the Saudi Embassy in London click here.
All You Need to Know About a Saudi eVisa
The Saudi online visa/eVisa is an official document granted by the Saudi government, and requires applicants to fill out a form online. Required documents will be highlighted in the next paragraph.
2.What Documents do I need for a Tourist Visa?
This is dependant on the type of KSA tourist visa you are applying for.
For an e-visa/ visa on arrival you will need the following:
- A passport – the passport must have a validity of 6 months or more
- Accommodation – You must provide an address for your residence when staying in Saudi Arabia
- Hard copy of the visa, although a soft copy is advised
For a consulate tourist visa, click here to apply:
Accommodation – You must provide an address for your residence when staying in Saudi Arabia
- Return flight tickets
- Proof of employment
- A statement from the bank
- Additional documents such as national ID and a travel itinerary
3.How long does a Saudi Tourist Visa last for?
The eVisa is a multiple entry visa, valid for one year upon issuance and allows entry for up to 90days at a time.
There is also a single entry visa, which only allows a stay of up to one month in the Kingdom.
How much does a Saudi Tourist Visa cost?
There are two primary expenses upon applying for a Saudi Arabia tourist visa.
The first is the cost of the visa fee which comes to SAR 440 which comes to roughly £100 depending on currency exchange rates.
The second is the compulsory health insurance fee at SAR 140, or about £31.
There are additional charges such as VAT payment and processing fees.
4.How long does it take to get a Saudi Tourist Visa?
For an e-visa:
The processing time is usually 5 to 30 minutes online
For a consulate visa:
They take between 1 to 2 days to be issued, click here for more information.
5.Which countries allow Saudi Tourist Visas?
Citizens from 49 countries are eligible to get a Saudi Tourist e-visa and visas on arrival
- New Zealand
- South Korea
- Czech Republic
- San Marino
- China, including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan
6.What laws and etiquette should I be aware of when entering Saudi Arabia?
According to the official Saudi Tourism site there are certain laws and cultural expectations that visitors should follow, we have highlighted a list below:
Alcohol and Substances
The sale, purchase and consumption of alcohol or drugs is illegal in Saudi Arabia. This also applies to travellers who have been issued a Saudi tourist visa.
Public displays of affection, profane language or general inappropriate behaviour is prohibited. All tourists are advised to act modestly and avoid any behaviours that can be deemed inappropriate.
Saudi Arabi has particular rules when it comes to public dress, the handling of this matter was of great intrigue upon the announcement of a Saudi Arabia Tourist Visa. According to the Visit Saudi official website both sexes are asked to dress modestly, while avoiding revealing or tight-fitting clothing. Clothing with profane images or language are also advised against.
7.How do I get to Saudi Arabia?
The main form of transport advised for tourist is through one of the many international airports in the Kingdom. Here is a fully comprehensive list below. There are additional airports within Saudi for internal flights available too.
1. King Khalid International Airport (RUH) – Riyadh
2. King Abdulaziz International Airport (JED) – Jeddah
3. King Fahd International Airport (DMM) – Dammam
4. Prince Mohammed bin Abdulaziz International Airport (MED) – Madinah
5. Taif International Airport (TIF) – Taif
6. Abha International Airport (AHB) – Abha
7. Hail International Airport (HAS) – Ha’il
8. King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz InternationalAirport (GIZ) – Gazan
9. Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz International Airport (ELQ) – Qassim
10. Prince Sultan Bin Abdulaziz International Airport (TUU) – Tabuk
11. Prince Abdulmohsin Bin Abdulaziz International Airport (YNB) –Yanbu
12. Al-Jouf International Airport (AJF) – Jouf
13. Al-Ahsa International Airport (HOF) – Al Ahsa
For more information regarding visas to Saudi Arabia, click here to contact our specialists today.