It has been revealed that Saudi Arabia announced to offer Transit Visa along with ticket booking. Travellers to Saudi Arabia, who plan on transiting through the Kingdom and have a connecting time between their flights which is more than 12 hours, need to apply for a Saudi transit visa.
Now get 4-day Saudi Transit Visa with Airlines Ticket
According to local Saudi media, Saudia, the national airline, is introducing a service that will permit travelers with tickets from the airline to enter the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
As per the latest reports, a traveller will now need to just fill up a simple form while booking an airlines ticket with Saudia and get Transit Visa in no time, multiple media reports said Wednesday citing the sources at the Saudi Arabian Airlines.
The entire procedure should take less than 3 minutes, the airlines said.
“When passengers book plane tickets online, they will be asked whether or not they require a visa. If they indicate that they do, they will be redirected to fill up a form and complete some procedures, not exceeding three minutes”, Abdullah Al-Shahrani, spokesperson of Saudia, told Okaz daily.
Valid to enter Madinah or Makkah?
The reports further said that the service named “Your Ticket is a Visa” will be available at all international airports within the Kingdom. The validity of the visa will be 96 hours (4 days).
“Visitors can use this transit visa to entrer Makkah and perform Umrah”, reports said adding, if they wish they can also visit Masjid Nabawi, The Prophet Mosque, in Madina al Munawara.
The transit visa that comes with airline ticket cannot be used to perform Hajj as the annual pilgrimage requires a stay in the Kingdom for extended time. Also, it is mandatory for pilgrims to get Hajj permit for annual pilgrimage to Makkah.
What is the fee of Saudi Transit Visa?
The reports in the meantime did not reveal if the service will be charged or free of cost. As per the visa rules in place till now, Saudi Transit Visa was issued only through embassies, and for that visitors were required to pay SAR 100 and SAR 300 for 96 hours.
Saudi Arabia had earlier also announced ‘visa on arrival’ service for a number of countries including the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. Also, the GCC citizens, including nationals from Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, can enter Saudi Arabia visa-free and do not need to apply for a Saudi transit visa.
As per the reports provided by the World Bank, in the year 2012 approximately 14.3 million people had visited Saudi Arabia, and also reports suggest that Saudi Arabia is the 19th most visited country in the world.
Business experts feel that Saudia’s new transit visa policy offering transit visas of 48-96 hours along with plane tickets which is already provided by several UAE-based airlines, such as Etihad, Emirates, Fly Dubai, Air Arabia, and Air Arabia Abu Dhabi, will further boost tourism in Saudi Arabia.