Amidst news of vaccine drives, new virus variants, and closures and reopenings of international borders, the travel industry is gearing up for a return to small normalcy by taking into account the easing of quarantine requirements, and the creation of travel bubbles. Travellers around the world are now keen to find out if, when and how they can travel abroad.

In the case of Saudi Arabia, the country has reopened its international flights finally allowing travellers to both visit and travel outside of the Kingdom. But does the lifting of restrictions finally mean foreign nationals will once again be free to travel to the Kingdom? If you are planning to fly to Saudi Arabia, please find more information below.

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Who can travel to Saudi Arabia now?

Non-Saudi nationals holding tourist visas are now allowed to enter the Kingdom should they have completed the required doses of one of the COVID-19 vaccines approved by the Saudi Ministry of Health. Travellers must also have successfully registered on the Arrival Registration Platform and are required to provide a negative PCR test certificate issued from a verified laboratory that does not exceed 72 hours from the time the test is undertaken until departing to the Kingdom. Vaccinated tourists will be allowed to enter without having to be institutionally quarantined.

Umrah pilgrims

Foreign umrah pilgrims may now be allowed to partake in the Umrah. Unfortunately, the direct entry of expatriates for Umrah from nine countries facing travel ban remains in force. These countries are Indonesia, Pakistan, Brazil, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, India, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Vietnam.

However, the ban doesn’t necessarily prohibit foreign pilgrims from said countries from entering Saudi Arabia provided that they are willing and able to spend 14 days in a third country following their departure. Foreign pilgrims outside the aforementioned countries may travel directly to Saudi Arabia to fulfill their religious calling.

Saudi Arabia travel suspension

Please note that an entry ban is still in place for travellers originating from the following countries. Transiting in these countries will also result in denied entry. The listed countries are Indonesia, Pakistan, Brazil, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, India, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Vietnam

Saudi Arabia entry requirements

If a person who intends to travel to Saudi Arabia was diagnosed with COVID-19 or was in contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19, he/she should declare to health authorities at their country, and not travel until 14 days after diagnosis or last contact. Violations are subject to prosecution under (Health Control at Points of Entry Regulation).

They would be subjected to fines not exceeding 500,000 Saudi Riyals and held accountable for the consequences of their violation on others.

Perform COVID-19 PCR within the timeframe assigned by Saudi Arabia, and test result is proof of COVID-19 clearance. Violators will be denied entry to Saudi Arabia.

Furthermore, the following requirements must be satisfied:

  • A negative result PCR test certificate issued within 72 hours prior to departure for non-Saudi nationals over eight years old
  • All permitted arrivals must download and register on Tatamman and Tawakkalna App
  • Travellers must also have successfully registered on the Arrival Registration Platform
  • Exempted categories must undergo self-quarantine for a period of 7 days from the date of entry
  • All non-Saudi arrivals must have medical insurance that covers the costs of COVID-19 treatment in outpatient clinics, emergencies and hospitals, including the institutional quarantine.

Family members of health practitioners are allowed to travel to Saudi Arabia without the need to be accompanied by the health practitioner and without the need to spend 14 days out of the suspended countries.

Please find the list of approved laboratories in your country of origin here.

You will also have to fill out and sign Health Disclaimer Form and hand it over to the health control center upon arrival.

Vaccination requirements

Saudi Arabia is requiring all non-Saudi arrivals to have been fully vaccinated. A vaccination certificate is thus necessary from one of the following:

  • 2 doses of Pfizer BioNTech
  • 2 doses of Oxford AstraZeneca
  • 2 doses of Moderna
  • 1 dose of Johnson & Johnson

The duration between receiving the last dose (the second dose of a two-dose vaccine or the first dose of a single dose vaccine) must not be less than 14 days.

Travellers who have completed two doses of the Sinopharma and Sinovac vaccines will also be accepted on the condition that they have received an additional dose of one of the vaccines approved in the Kingdom mentioned above.

Vaccinated travellers, except Saudi citizens and those who are exempt, must fill out the Registration Immunization Information Form before departure.

Please find the full details here.

Do I need to quarantine upon arriving in Saudi Arabia?

Vaccinated individuals will be exempted from both, quarantine as well as testing requirements, provided they show proof of immunization.

Otherwise, all non-Saudi arrivals over the age of eight must provide a negative PCR test certificate conducted by a verified laboratory issued within 72 hours. Within 24 hours of arrival, all non-Saudi travellers over the age of eight will be subjected to another PCR test and proceed to serve a 7-day institutional quarantine. On the 7th day, a second PCR test will be conducted and if the result is negative, they are permitted to leave quarantine on the 8th day.

Vaccinated individuals will be exempted from both, quarantine as well as testing requirements, provided they show proof of immunization.

Who is exempted from institutional quarantine?

  • Saudi citizens, citizen spouses and their mothers, citizens children and domestic workers accompanying any of these categories
    • Non-immune travellers, in this category, shall comply with home quarantine for a period of 7 days, and be allowed to take the COVID 19 PCR test starting on the 6TH day of quarantine
  • Non-immune domestic workers accompanying an immune resident
    • Non-immune Guests shall comply with home quarantine for a period of 7 days, and be allowed to take the COVID 19 PCR test starting on the 6TH day of quarantine
  • Immune Guests of citizens and residents and their companions, resident’s wives and resident’s children those who are under the age of (18) who are not accompanied by their parents
  • Non-immune Guests, shall comply with Home Quarantine for 7days, and take PCR test on the 6th day of quarantine
  • Those holding a diplomatic visa, diplomats and their residing families, and their domestic workers
    • they’ll have to adhere to the quarantine procedures by staying in their homes in accordance to the minatory of health (MOH) approved regulations)
  • Cabin Crews
  • Those involved in health supply chains, according to MOH
  • Health practitioners working in Government sectors, their families and companions those who are under the age of 18
    • they must comply with home quarantine for 7 days with 2 PCR tests, one within 24 hours and another on the 7th day

The following categories will be exempted from institutional quarantine. However, they will have to home quarantine for 2 weeks:

  • Saudi citizens, their spouses and children
  • Passengers who received COVID-19 vaccines
  • Official delegates
  • Diplomats and their families residing with them
  • Workers in the healthcare supply chain
  • Airline cabin crew, navy and truck drivers

It is also mandatory for travellers to take RT-PCR tests on the first and seventh day of quarantine.

Are there flights to Saudi Arabia now?

Yes, since the announcement, there is a heightened interest in international flight schedules to Jeddah and Riyadh, particularly schedules of its national carrier Saudi Airlines and budget airline Flynas. If you are eligible to enter Saudi Arabia, please check Wego to see if there is a flight from your city.

Domestic flights within the country have also restarted for months now, and you can also find flights to Jizan, Dammam, and more on Wego.

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