Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – The Directorate General of Passports (Jawazat) and the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia are conducting studies to introduce a host visa service through the Ministry of Interior’s Absher portal, the Saudi Gazette reported. Jakarta, Friday.
The new visa, which allows Saudi citizens and expatriates to accommodate people under their personal sponsorship for up to 90 days, is expected to take effect immediately in the coming days.
Under the visa system, Saudi citizens or foreign nationals (expatriates) can cover three to five pilgrims of Umrah (minor hajj).
For Saudi citizens, they can accommodate anyone they invite. However, for foreigners, they can only sponsor close relatives, according to sources.
Jawazat and the ministry will soon issue a working mechanism for the host visa, which will cost 500 Saudi riyals (around 133.32 US dollars) per person for one year.
The same person can be invited back to Saudi at least three times a year after the issuance of a separate visa for each trip through Absher.
The visa allows the invitees to stay in their hotel, furnished apartment or living together.
Visa holders can travel freely throughout the kingdom, including visiting tourist attractions. Guest data will be recorded in the Civil Status registry of citizens and Absher portal for foreigners.
Host citizens and expatriates will be responsible for taking care of their guests and serve them until they leave the Kingdom.
Starting September 27, 2019, Saudi Arabia has opened up visiting opportunities for foreign tourists from 49 countries by launching a new visa. Visitors from several countries can get visas on arrival at Saudi airports, while others must register at one of the Saudi diplomatic missions in advance.
The fee for multiple tourist visas is 440 Saudi riyals (around 117.32 US dollars) for a period of one year, and includes government fees of 300 Saudi riyals (79.99 US dollars) plus health insurance fees, taxes, and transaction fees.
Tourists are allowed to stay in Saudi Arabia for a maximum period of 90 days for one year, and they are allowed to enter the royal territory several times.
Reporting by Indonesia Window