Saudi Arabia reintroduces visa on arrival scheme

Holders of valid visas for the US, UK and Schengen area no longer have to apply in advance…

Travelling to Saudi Arabia just got even easier for US, UK and Schengen visa holders, as the Kingdom has reintroduced the visa on arrival scheme.

As reported by the Saudi Press Agency, citizens of any country who hold a US, UK or Schengen visa can now receive a one-year tourist visa on arrival in Saudi Arabia, without having to apply in advance. Passengers should be travelling on one of Saudi Arabia’s three national carriers: Saudia, Flynas or Flyadeal to be eligible for the visa on arrival, and should have used it at least once to enter the issuing country or region to qualify.

Citizens of any of the 49 countries eligible for the e-visa programme also qualify for visas on arrival, irrespective of which airline they travel to Saudi Arabia with. First introduced in September 2019, full details of the visa-on-arrival scheme – including the countries included – can be found here.

Visitors must ensure they have valid Covid-19 insurance, which they can purchase at any of Saudi Arabia’s international airports.

Lifting of all Covid-19 measures

The announcement comes several weeks after Saudi Arabia lifted all travel restrictions on March 6, allowing visitors, residents and citizens to travel freely in and out of the country for the first time since March 2020. Visitors to Saudi Arabia no longer need to present proof of vaccination or a PCR test to enter the country, and are not required to undergo quarantine or social distancing once they arrive in the Kingdom. Masks are required in enclosed public places only.

“Saudi Arabia has emerged from the pandemic with a burgeoning leisure and entertainment sector that includes some of the largest events in the world as well as a compelling cultural tourism offer and an increasing number of local companies dedicated to tourism,” said Ahmed Al-Khateeb, Minister of Tourism of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Chairman of Saudi Tourism Authority (STA). “We look forward to welcoming visitors from around the world eager to explore the authentic home of Arabia.”