Saudi Arabia has 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:
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.