Saudi Arabia Background
Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
Travel requirements
Saudi Arabia visa policy

Saudi Arabia visa policy

The Saudi Arabia visa policy is a set of regulations indicating who may enter the territory of the Kingdom and with what type of travel permit.

Currently, all the Gulf Cooperation Council member countries can enjoy visa exemption which means that they do not need to apply for a visa before traveling to Saudi Arabia.

Non-visa-exempt countries, however, need to obtain a relevant visa prior to the planned visit to the country. The most convenient way is to apply for a Saudi Arabia eVisa online, which is issued for tourism and leisure purposes, including performing Umrah.

Saudi Arabia eVisa application is an entirely online process and requires no embassy appointments. At the moment, the list of eligible countries for the Saudi online visa includes around 50 different countries.

An alternative to the electronic visa will be the Visa on Arrival. This is a way less convenient method of getting the entry permit since it may involve long hours spent in the immigration control lines. All nationalities eligible for eVisa are recommended to apply for a visa online in advance to save plenty of time.

All those travelers who cannot get their visas, either on arrival or online, will need to book an in-person appointment at the nearest embassy or consulate and obtain a regular visa.

Similarly, an embassy visa must be obtained by every traveler wishing to spend more than 90 days in the KSA or who consider living, working, or/and studying in the Kingdom.


Who can enter Saudi Arabia?

Saudi Arabia clearly specifies who can and who cannot enter the country.

For the time being, Israeli nationals cannot enter the KSA under the official entry ban. Moroever, passengers trying to enter Saudi Arabia whose passports state that they have been previously to Israel (or they were born in Israel) may be denied entry to the country. The entry ban was imposed due to the Arab League boycott of the Jewish state.

Also, the Kingdom imposes periodical bans on Qatari nationals. Last time, the ban was introduced in 2017 and Qatari nationals can now enjoy only limited visa-free movement.


Entry Requirements for Saudi Arabia

The Saudi authorities have lifted all remaining coronavirus restrictions and travelers no longer need to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test or certificate of vaccination.

Nevertheless, all visitors must still register via the Muqueem Portal prior to travel and provide their immunization details. Registration enables using the Tawakkalna mobile application, which may be useful when they need to show vaccination proof to access certain sites.

The country has also introduced mandatory travel insurance for all visitors (except for Saudi residents), which must cover COVID-related potential treatment and quarantine costs.


Documents check-list for entering Saudi Arabia

Preparing all the necessary documents is essential to ensure smooth and quick entry to the country. Before your trip, make sure you have ready the following:

  • a valid visa
  • a passport valid for at least 6 months
  • insurance with COVID-19 coverage
  • a completed Muqueem Arrival Registration

Important! All travelers planning a trip to the KSA should make sure to check the latest travel advice as the Saudi Arabia entry requirements are subject to change at short notice. Consult the entry and travel rules with the official website of the Kingdom to ensure hassle-free entry and stay in Saudi Arabia.

Methods of getting visa to the KSA

The visa policy of Saudi Arabia states that there are different ways how to obtain a visa for the country. It is an individual’s nationality which determines whether they can apply for a visa online, on arrival, or directly at the Saudi embassy or consulate.

Electronic visa (eVisa)

The online visa for the KSA or eVisa covers all kinds of tourism-related purposes, including performing Umrah. Nationals of 49 countries in the world can enjoy the benefits of an online application.

A holder of a valid Saudi eVisa can stay in the country for up to 90 days, while the visa remains valid for one year from the date it was approved.

The electronic visa is automatically linked to the passport used in the online application. It is essential that the passport cannot expire within at least 180 days from the date of intended arrival in the KSA.

Medical insurance, which is mandatory for travelers visiting the Kingdom, will be also linked to the approved Saudi Arabia online visa.


Visa on arrival

All the nationalities eligible for an eVisa can also get their visas issued upon arrival in Saudi Arabia. Nevertheless, it is always recommended to obtain a visa before setting off for the journey since applying for the VoA usually is a time-consuming procedure.

Travelers wishing to get a visa on arrival in the KSA should know that they may need to spend long hours at the airport and provide supporting documents for their visa applications.

Regular visa

All these travelers who cannot obtain visas for Saudi Arabia online or on arrival should arrange a traditional visa application well in advance. Applying for a visa at an embassy or consulate may take long weeks, so it is essential to start the procedure early enough.

An applicant will need to visit an embassy in person and provide certain documents, which may differ depending on the type of requested visa. Covering the processing fee will also be necessary to successfully complete the application process.

Countries and regions which require a visa for entry into Saudi Arabia

Electronic visa

  • AndorraAndorra
  • AustriaAustria
  • AustraliaAustralia
  • BelgiumBelgium
  • BulgariaBulgaria
  • CanadaCanada
  • SwitzerlandSwitzerland
  • ChinaChina
  • CyprusCyprus
  • Czech RepublicCzech Republic
  • GermanyGermany
  • DenmarkDenmark
  • EstoniaEstonia
  • SpainSpain
  • FinlandFinland
  • FranceFrance
  • United KingdomUnited Kingdom
  • GreeceGreece
  • CroatiaCroatia
  • HungaryHungary
  • IrelandIreland
  • IcelandIceland
  • ItalyItaly
  • JapanJapan
  • South KoreaSouth Korea
  • KazakhstanKazakhstan
  • LiechtensteinLiechtenstein
  • LithuaniaLithuania
  • LuxembourgLuxembourg
  • LatviaLatvia
  • MonacoMonaco
  • MontenegroMontenegro
  • MacauMacau
  • MaltaMalta
  • MalaysiaMalaysia
  • NetherlandsNetherlands
  • NorwayNorway
  • New ZealandNew Zealand
  • PolandPoland
  • San MarinoSan Marino
  • TaiwanTaiwan
  • UkraineUkraine
  • United StatesUnited States
  • SingaporeSingapore
  • PortugalPortugal
  • SwedenSweden
  • SlovakiaSlovakia
  • SloveniaSlovenia
  • RussiaRussia
  • Brunei DarussalamBrunei Darussalam
  • RomaniaRomania

Regular visa
The list comprises all the remaining countries (excluding eligible for eVisa and visa-exempt countries).

Visa-free entry

  • United Arab EmiratesUnited Arab Emirates
  • BahrainBahrain
  • KuwaitKuwait
  • OmanOman
  • QatarQatar

*Qatari Muslims are permitted to enter the KSA only for the purpose of the Hajj pilgrimage (from the 8th to 12th of Dhu al-Hijjah, the last month of the Islamic calendar).

Entry requirements for children

All minor travelers must hold separate visas for Saudi Arabia. Parents or legal guardians are responsible for the correctness of the visa application process. Moroever, they should ensure that all underage travelers possess other documents required for hassle-free entry to the KSA, including a passport, and travel insurance.

Important: A child traveling with a third party must hold the written consent of the minor’s parents with copies of their identification documents.


Transit information

Transiting through Saudi Arabia before reaching the final travel destination doesn’t require obtaining a visa, provided that you won’t be leaving the airport’s transit zone.

If you wish to exit the tranist area when waiting for your connecting flight, make sure to obtain a transit visa. Also, if you plan to change the terminal or the airline, a visa will be necessary.

To get a transit online visa, make sure you meet the eligibility criteria and apply at least 3 business days in advance.

Additionally, make sure that you meet all the entry requirements introduced by the country of your final destination.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do I need a visa to travel to Saudi Arabia?

Yes. Travelers from most countries in the world do need to hold a visa to enter Saudi Arabia. The KSA allows visa-free entry to all members of the GCC.

What are the methods of getting a visa for Saudi Arabia?

Depending on the traveler's nationality, one can obtain a tourist visa either online, on arrival, or at the Saudi Arabian embassy. Moroever, there are different types of visas covering various traveling purposes, such as study, or work, which must be obtained directly at the nearest diplomatic mission.

Can I get a Saudi Arabia visa on arrival?

Citizens of the countries eligible for Saudi eVisa can also obtain a visa on arrival in the Kingdom. Nevertheless, getting a visa online prior to the planned arrival in the country will help you to avoid additional stress and long hours spent in the airport.

What are the requirements for going to Saudi Arabia?

Among the required documents that must be held by foreign travelers are a valid visa and a passport. Although the KSA authorities have lifted entry restrictions introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic, all international travelers can still register on the Muqeem portal providing their vaccination details to speed up their entry to the country. Also, all visitors must have insurance with COVID-19 coverage.

Do I need a visa to transit through Saudi Arabia?

Passengers transiting through Saudi Arabia do not need a visa as long as they will not be leaving the transit zone at the airport when awaiting their connecting flight.

What are the requirements for children traveling to Saudi Arabia?

Every child traveling to Saudi Arabia must hold a valid passport, travel insurance as well as a separate visa. Also, if traveling with a third party, a child must possess the written consent of their parents/legal guardians together with their ID copies.