Saudi Visas


As a new employee coming to work in Riyadh, you will arrive in the Kingdom for the first time on a temporary visit visa arranged by your sponsor, who will be either a Saudi national or a company registered to do business in Saudi Arabia. For more information please check with the embassies and consulates of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in your country. Visas are issued for short periods, and the visit must commence within a month of the visa’s date of issue.

Residence Visa

During your stay you must submit all the papers necessary to support and application for a residence visa. Among these are medical certificate (which may have to be attested by a recognized authority) and certificates verifying your educational qualifications (which will have to be translated into Arabic). The application takes between one week to six weeks to process, and you can check the status online and the visa number on Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

To Saudi Consulate

  • Passport
  • Application form (Photo)
  • Medical results
  • Copy of certificates verifying your educational qualifications (which will have to be translated into Arabic)
  • Copy of contract
  • Company letter in Arabic
  • No-Objection Certificate (only if you have worked in Saudi Arabia recently).
  • Copy of visa payment slip (From Employer)
  • Visa Fee

Your application is matched to the visa number from the Ministry and your visa is stamped into your passport and you can make your trip. Don’t forget to bring your documents below:

What to Bring with You

  • Birth certificates for whole family – leave photocopies at home
  • Marriage certificate
  • Your educational certificates
  • Driving Licence
  • Passport Photos of yourself
  • Photos of family – approx. 6cm x 4cm.

Getting Your Iqama (Residence Permit)

Apply and receive an identity card (iqama), which you must carry with you at all times. Give the following documents to your personnel or to Passport office:

  • Iqama Medical
  • Company letter
  • Contract
  • Medical results
  • Passport

Family Visa

Once you have your iqama you can start the process of obtaining a family visa.

  • Send your copy of contract to wife.
  • Wife gets “Visa Medical” in home country
  • Get official Arabic translation done from here of all birth, marriage and degree certificates (must be a “recognized” translator).
  • Certification/Attestation at your country’s consulate (Take photocopies of your originals and translations. Have fees with you and check cost by phone. Contact numbers could be browsed from the Embassies and Consulate websites as mentioned above).

Prepare Arabic application form and company letter (you can go yourself to the Istekhdam office to get the form).

To Istekhdam Office

Ask you personnel department to show you on a map where to find the Istekhdam office.

  • Iqama
  • Application Form
  • Company letter
  • Certificates/translations (leave copies of certificates, have originals with you to show the clerk)

Best to get there at 8:00am when it opens, there is a seated queue of foreigners.

Application is processed and passed to Foreign Ministry (10 days).

Foreign Ministry advises visa number to Saudi Consulate in home country (10 days). Collect visa number from Foreign Ministry and inform your wife of the number or you can also check online status from the Ministry’s website as mentioned above in this document.

To Saudi Consulate

Take the following things to Saudi Consulate:

  • Wife’s and Children Passports
  • Application form quoting visa number
  • Wife’s medical results
  • Copy of contract
  • Visa fee
  • Photocopy of marriage certificate

Collect passport from consulate on the date given by them.

Family onto Iqama

Once the family has arrived and has settled in, you will need to have their separate iqamas. Things needed are as follows:

  • Wife to have “Iqama medical”
  • Send to Passport office: Your Iqama, application form, medical results, attested certificates, company letter and photos of all family members.

And then collect Iqama on the date given by them.

Multiple Exit-Re-entry Visa

A single exit-re-entry visa cost SR200, but for SR500 (plus SR250 admin charge) you can get a multiple visa. A family pays SR2000 plus admin. Each passport is issued with an exit and re-entry stamps. It is valid for six months.

For more electronic services, browse through Ministry of Foreign Affairs page:

Ministry of Interior
The Directorate General for Passports
Phone: +96614771100
Fax: +96614778835

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More Information About Visas in Saudi