Saudi Arabia : the country officially opens up to tourism
Visa on arrival and e-Visa issued in a few minutes, the Kingdom is thinking big and using modern technologies to welcome its first tourists. After several months of postponement, one of the last countries in the world closed to international tourists is opening its doors !
Religious pilgrims, business travellers or family reunions will no longer be the only foreign visitors to Saudi Arabia from this day forward. In the spirit of the times for several weeks and after the first online visas were issued for sporting or cultural events, the Kingdom has made its opening to international tourists official by offering visas issued on arrival in the country or in electronic format (e-Visa) for nationals of 49 countries.
This new system of visas, issued on arrival or electronically, is a historic step in Saudi Arabia’s opening to the world.
Officials say international visitors will discover the warm hospitality of the Saudi people, a rich heritage with five UNESCO World Heritage sites, a vibrant culture, breathtaking landscapes from the Abha Mountains to the Red Sea beaches and the Rub al-Khali Desert.
For tourists who wish to obtain their visa upon arrival in the Kingdom, kiosks are available to request their visa in a few minutes at one of the 4 eligible airports.
Where to claim the Saudi e-Visa ? The electronic tourist visa must be requested on the website: visa.visitsaudi.com, the official website of the Saudi authorities.
Who can claim this e-Visa ? Tourists from the following 49 countries are eligible to obtain an electronic tourist visa:
NORTH AMERICA : Canada and the United States.
EUROPE: Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, FRANCE, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Poland, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Sweden, Ukraine, United Kingdom.
ASIA: Brunei, China (as well as Hong Kong and Macao), Japan, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Singapore and South Korea.
OCEANIA: Australia and New Zealand.
How much does this e-Visa cost ? The costs of electronic tourist visas are divided into two parts : consular fees and compulsory medical insurance fees.
It will therefore be necessary to count 300 Saudi rials (∼ 73.00€) in visa fees to which 140 rials (∼ 34.00€) will have to be added for insurance.