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Do I Need a Visa to Travel to Saudi Arabia?
As part of Saudi Arabia’s visa regime, nationals of all foreign countries must apply for entry visas depending on the nature of their visit. Nationals of the following countries have visa-waiver agreements with Saudi Arabia: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, United Arab Emirates. Accordingly, citizens of certain countries are eligible to apply for electronic visa/visa on arrival which is valid for up to 90 days. The countries whose passport holders are allowed to obtain visa on arrival include all the EU member states, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Monaco, Montenegro, San Marino, Ukraine, Russia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Andorra, Brunei, Australia, New Zealand, the UK and USA. You can submit your application online.
Saudi Arabia Visa Types
Different types of visas for entry to Saudi Arabia are categorized as tourist visa, business visit visa, personal visit visa, student visa, family visit visa, hajj/umrah visa and transit visa for short-term visits. Companion visa, employment visa or residence visa can be obtained for longer term stays whereas single, double or multiple-entry visas distinguish the frequency of travels. Single-entry visa enables visitors to stay in Saudi Arabia for one month, while the multiple entry visa grants stays up to three months. The e-visa is valid for up to 90 days in one year period with multiple-entry possibility.
Type C (Short-term Stay) Visa
Short-term visa can be issued for predetermined periods, in line with the applicant’s nature of visit and for stays that are not exceeding up to 90 days.
Saudi Arabia Tourist Visa
Tourist visa for Saudi Arabia is issued to foreign nationals who are asked to obtain an entry visa to visit for tourism and entertainment related purposes. Tourist visa holders can remain in Saudi Arabia for up to 90 days. King Khalid International Airport (Riyadh), King Abdul-Aziz International Airport (Jeddah), King Fahad International Airport (Dammam), Prince Mohammed bin Abdul-Aziz International Airport (Madinah), King Fahad Causeway and Al Bathaa Land Port are eligible entry points to obtain visa on arrival.
Saudi Arabia Visa for Business and Fair Visits
Business visa is granted to foreign nationals who are visiting Saudi Arabia for business reasons. Holder of a business visa may attend a conference, meeting, fair or engage in commercial activities. An invitation letter from a Saudi company may be required for the application process.
Saudi Arabia Visa for Visit to Family, Relatives and Friends
Third country nationals who intend to visit their family, relatives or friends can obtain a family visit visa. Travelers who will be visiting friends can get a visitor visa. Proof of relationship between the application and inviter is necessary. Minors who are aged under 18 and are travelling without guardians are requested to submit a notarized letter written by their parents.
Saudi Arabia Visa for Cultural, Sports Activities and Participation to Conferences
Foreign travelers are asked to obtain an entry visa to visit Saudi Arabia with the purpose of participating cultural or sports related events. Hajj visa is a special category of Saudi visa which is given to pilgrims. Applicants should process their hajj visa request within designated times,between the 15th day of Shawwal and the 25th day of Dhu’l-Qaeda. Muslim women are not allowed to travel to Saudi Arabia alone, unless they are 45 or over.
Saudi Arabia Visa for Short-term Education and Traineeship
Foreign travelers who would like to go to Saudi Arabia for short-term education or training purposes shall apply for a short-term student or work visa. Applicants should get a long term visa and a work permit for stays exceeding 90 days. The prospective employer or education institution must provide the applicant with an official admission letter.
Type D (Long-term Stay) Visa
Long-term visa enables its holder to enter Saudi Arabia for periods extending over 90 days.
A work visa is issued for full time work in Saudi Arabia where the applicant is required to submit a contract of employment provided by the employer. Medical report or a certificate demonstrating the applicant’s qualifications may be asked during the application process.
Foreign students who wish to take part in Saudi Arabian education institutions are requested to get a student visa. The visa is issued for maximum one year but applying for a residence permit is obligatory for long-term stays. An admission letter along with proof of adequate financial funds are among the key documents to submit during the application for a student visa.
Saudi Arabia Premium Residency is granted to qualified foreign citizens upon proof of a valid passport and sufficient financial funds. Accordingly, certain benefits are ensured such as recruitment, business and property ownership with equal rights as Saudi citizens.
Saudi Arabia Transit Visa
Transit visa is given to travelers who will have stopovers at one of the Saudi airports for transits exceeding 12 hours. Saudi transit visa enables the traveler to pass through its international zone without permitting to leave the airport.
General Requirements to Apply for Saudi Arabia Visa
Tourist visa requirements for travelling to Saudi Arabia are explained in detail below. Please be aware of the fact that the required documents may differ depending on the term and purpose of your stay, hence the category of your visa. The Consulate reserves its right to ask for additional documents.
Saudi Arabia Visa Applications
- A passport or travel document with at minimum two blank pages, valid for at least six months and for at least 90 days after the end of travel. Copy of the first page including personal data and previous visas if obtained.
- Completed and signed visa application form along with two biometric photo that is not older than 6 months.
- Proof of travel with confirmed both-way tickets.
- Bank account details proving that the passenger can sufficiently fund his/her travel.
- Evidence of occupation in the form of certified documents through employer letter, student certificate, document of registration or demonstration of pension funds.
- Accommodation details through an invitation letter or proof of your hotel reservation throughout your stay.
- Documentation of travel health insurance which will be valid in Saudi Arabia throughout the entire period of stay.
Additional specific documents may be asked to enclose your application depending on your employment status.
- Employment contract (original certificate of employment indicating the position in the company and the salary)
- Bank account statement of the past 6 months
- Approval letter of leave from employer
- Income Tax Return (ITR)
- Proof of business license (company registration)
- Company’s bank account statement of the past 6 months
- Income Tax Return (ITR)
- Documentation of University enrollment
- No-objection certificate from school management
- Pension statement documenting the past 6 months
- Proof of financial resources is nevertheless required
- If the person is not able to finance his/her own expenses, proof of a sponsor is mandatory.
What is Visa Sponsorship for Saudi Arabia?
Students or unemployed/retired people who are not in a position to cover their own travel expenses will need to demonstrate support from a sponsor who will borne the full costs. The sponsor is entitled to certain requirements. Hence, only first grade relatives can fulfill this position. You can check our website for all the relevant details.
Saudi Arabia Visa Rules
- Qatari citizens are not allowed to visit Saudi Arabia following deterioration of relations between the countries as of 2017.
- Citizens of Israel are also not admitted to Saudi Arabia neither for transit purposes.
- There are overstay fees that amount up to SAR 100 per day, in the case the traveler remains in Saudi Arabia despite expiration of the visa.
- Muslim tourists can perform Umrah with a tourist visa, however a separate visa is required for Hajj.
- Female pilgrims cannot travel alone. Those who are younger than the age of 45 are requested to be accompanied by a male family member while the ones who are above 45 can travel with an authorised travel agency.
- Applicants submitting request for work or residence permits are asked to get an official medical report or physical examination for contagious diseases, including HIV/AIDS and hepatitis.
- Please keep in mind that the entry requirements may change based on decisions of the authorities and it is strongly advised to have solid information from the local diplomatic missions in your country of residence prior to your departure.
Saudi Arabia Visa Requirements
In addition to above mentioned application documents, general requirements include:
Saudi Arabia Visa for European countries
Nationals of the EU member states are asked for entry visas to travel to Saudi Arabia. However, they can apply for e-visa/visa on arrival as well.
Saudi Arabia Visa requirement for US, UK, and Canadian citizens
UK, Canadian and US citizens must comply with the visa requirements to travel to Saudi Arabia. They are also eligible to apply for e-visa/visa on arrival.
- • You must hold a permanent residence permit from one of the UK, US, or EU countries.
- • Passport must be valid for at least 6 months.
Saudi Arabia Visa Fees
The visa fee may change depending on the type of visa applied to visit Saudi Arabia. The visa fee comprises of the processing costs, unless stated otherwise. Also, beware that the fee is non-refundable which means that the rejection of your application will not be reimbursed.
|All Visit Visa including e-Visa, Visa-on-Arrival and Consulate Visa
|Base Fee:SAR 300 + Health Insurance
NOTE: This article was prepared in November 2022. Please check up-to-date information published by official sources.
Frequently Asked Questions