Saudi Arabia, which is hoping to welcome 100 million tourists by 2030, now offers quick visas to flyers entering the country.
Travellers who book ahead through Saudi and Flynas airlines can now get a stopover visa that is good for up to 96 hours, or four days. The visa can be obtained electronically through the platforms of the two airlines. This new initiative has become effective since January 30.
According to Flynas, the visa is issued “almost instantly” after the ticket is paid, or within a maximum of four hours.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which launched the visa service a few days back, said the new scheme enables those in transit to perform Umrah and visit the Prophet’s Mosque, as well as explore the Kingdom and attend tourism events.
The new initiative, which was introduced by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, allows travellers to perform Umrah, and visit the Prophet’s Mosque, allowing them to explore the Kingdom and take part in tourist events.
Meanwhile, this year Saudi Arabia targets an inflow of 25 million foreign tourists, minister of tourism Ahmed Al-Khateeb said. The Kingdom is also seeking to provide one million jobs in the vital tourism sector.
This was said by the minister during the monthly online gathering of Kingdom residents. The gathering also included other ministry senior officials. During the meeting, the minister reviewed the most remarkable achievements made by the tourism sector in the Kingdom during the year 2022.
“The total tourism expenditure amounted to SR185 billion in 2022 and this figure marks an increase of 93% over the previous year. The Kingdom exceeded the figures during the year 2019 so as to become the highest country in posting a record number of tourists from among the G20 countries,” Ahmed Al-Khateeb said.
He also said that the Kingdom is expected to rank 17th globally in attracting tourists.