What Is Saudi Arabia's Visa Policy?

As of June 2015, citizens of any country must have a visa to visit Saudi Arabia, with the exception of nationals of Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates. Travelers from the countries exempted must have a passport from that country. Valid visas in passports that have expired are allowed as long as the person is also carrying a passport that has been current for at least 6 months.

There are three types of Saudi Arabian visas: business, visitor and pilgrim. Business and visitor visas are worded in Arabic and English, while pilgrim visas are in Arabic only.

Travelers who have a stopover in Saudi Arabia do not need a visa as long as they are in the country for less than 12 hours. Two transit stopovers are allowed when traveling on Saudi Arabian Airlines; only one stopover is allowed for all other airlines.

Travelers holding Israeli passports are not allowed to enter Saudi Arabia. In addition, anyone who has a passport containing an Israeli visa or stamp may be prevented from entering the country. Saudi Arabia may also refuse entry to visitors traveling from other countries on a case-by-case basis. For example, Saudi Arabia does not allow visitors who have been to Sierra Leone, Guinea or Liberia due to the Ebola epidemic, as of June 2015.