SAUDI ARABIA introduces tourist visas for 49 nationalities

Riyadh: Saudi Arabia opened its doors to the world on Friday after it announced that tourist visas will be available to citizens from 49 countries.

For the first time, tourists can now apply for a visa through Saudi embassies and consulates across the world

Marking a milestone in Saudi Arabia’s history, Ahmed Al Khateeb, Chairman of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Heritage (SCTH), announced the launch of the tourist visa for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia at an event in Ad-Diriyah, a Unesco World Heritage Site in Riyadh.

Citizens from 49 countries will also be able to apply for an e-visa or receive a visa on arrival into Saudi Arabia. A dedicated online portal at visitsaudi.com was also launched and electronic kiosks are set to be available at airports to facilitate requests.

The following 49 countries will be eligible to apply for e-visas and visas on arrival:

  1. USA
  2. Canada
  3. Kazakhstan
  4. Singapore
  5. Brunei
  6. New Zealand
  7. South Korea
  8. Japan
  9. Spain
  10. Belgium
  11. Malaysia
  12. Austria
  13. Cyprus
  14. UK
  15. Croatia
  16. Estonia
  17. Andorra
  18. Denmark
  19. Germany
  20. Bulgaria
  21. France
  22. Hungary
  23. Czech Republic
  24. Holland
  25. Italy
  26. Finland
  27. Ireland
  28. Lithuania
  29. Greece
  30. Liechtenstein
  31. Monaco
  32. Iceland
  33. Malta
  34. Poland
  35. Latvia
  36. Norway
  37. Russia
  38. Luxembourg
  39. Romania
  40. Slovenia
  41. Montenegro
  42. Slovakia
  43. Switzerland
  44. Portugal
  45. Sweden
  46. Australia
  47. San Marino
  48. Ukraine
  49. China, including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan

The tourist visa allows for a stay of up to 3 months per entry, with visitors able to spend up to 90 days a year in Saudi Arabia. The visa is valid for one year with multiple entries.

The cost of applying for an e-visa or a visa on arrival is 440 riyals (around $117) plus VAT.

Saudi Arabia intends to extend the e-visa scheme to other countries in due course.