Saudi Arabia immigration process Ultimate Guide

Saudi Arabia Immigration Process

Saudi Arabia immigration process: Saudi Arabia is one of the largest Arab Islamic countries of the Middle East and is famous for the oil and has the world’s largest sand deserts and the world’s largest oasis. The kingdom is a complete monarchy and a complete Islamic theocracy. There are no political parties’ disputes and national elections in this kingdom. The political system is run by the royal family in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Why Saudi Arabia?

The people prefer to immigrate to Saudi Arabia because its standard of living is high and the cost of living is low. It is one of the safest places for living and visiting. They also prefer Saudi Arabia to come because Saudi people are very friendly hospitable and welcoming. Having rich availability of natural resources, People come to Saudi Arabia depending upon long-term strategic economic objectives and economic diversification.

Saudi Arabia treats the immigrates very nicely and has decreed the cap of six-year residency in the country as part of its program to control the local job market and many other Hajj-related works. Also, it is one of the most developed countries ranked by the United Nations. The cost of living in the kingdom is 29.64% less than in the United States.

The immigrants started coming to Saudi Arabia after the oil was discovered in the late 1930s. Thoroughly, Saudi Arabia was one of the most undeveloped and poor countries around the globe until the oil was discovered.

Thus, the country needed foreign expertise and labor to exploit the oil reserves and the years later after World War 2, the growth of technical experts and professionals was started increasing. But over time, the oil demand started increasing the foreign countries too and the demand for immigrants in Saudi Arabia had increased. So, the people started to immigrant to the kingdom of Saudi Arabia to utilize these jobs.

Saudi Arabia Immigration Process
Saudi Arabia Immigration Process

Saudi Arabia immigration policy

As Saudi Arabia immigration policy is mainly based on the laborers so, the recent immigrant policy based on labor immigration states that:

“According to the residence regulations of Saudi Arabia In accordance to the articles 2 and 3, all foreign migrants must have valid passports and visas and will enter the kingdom through valid ports of the country”.

Moreover, the Kingdom has also made some changes to the policy according to which the foreign workers will have the option to pick up their employer and will need the basic information about their opinions. Thoroughly, the employer will have to establish the information channels about job opportunities for the immigrants. They will also have to develop recruitment channels for the Saudi experts and job seekers and will match the service to bring both of them together.  

Summarily, foreign immigrants who are willing to work in Saud Arabia should obtain a working visa along with a Residence permit. The visa will be approved by the Saudi institution based on a block visa approval. And the residence card obtained post-arrival consists of work approval. The immigrant applicant should have an employment contract along with the Saudi Arabian entity, that is valid for at least one year.

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Types of visas in Saudi Arabia

Business Visit Visa:

It is used to conduct the limited business transaction along with a sponsor. It is mainly used by the people providing short-term or intermittent services such as management consulting and technical services. The requirements for the business visa are an original signed letter of invitation (LOI) required from the Kingdom sponsor, it also needs the additional documents such as support letters as the requirements. Its processing time is 3-7 working days. With time, the visa maybe change.

Work Visa:

A permit resident is required by the ministry of interior’s directorate-general for the passports. The actual work visa is then assigned by the embassy of foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia. It requires that they must be sponsored by Saudi employers. The additional documents required for this visa are a valid employment contract in Arabic, degree or educational qualifications, and medical reports. Its processing time is approximately 2-3 months.

Temporary work visa:

 This one is recently added to the kingdom’s Visa system. It allows the foreign entities to do work in Saudi Arabia temporarily. Its processing time is approximately 60-90 days.

Procedure for Immigration in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Step1: The immigrant applicant should have to first inscribe along with the ministry of interior who will open a type of file known as the “immigration file”. The immigrant sponsoring employer should have registered in Saudi Arabia and should grasp a valid commercial license. The sponsoring employer could be asked to submit the documents that include a commitment to Saudi citizenship. The employer then registers a visa application to the minister of labor. The time taken by this process is almost 2-3 months.

Steop 2: When the application has been approved the minister of labor will guide the ministry of foreign affairs. Then the minister of foreign affairs will issue a visa authorization number by taking 1-2 weeks.

Steop 3: The actual work visa will then issue by the related Saudi embassy under the instructions of the Foreign Affairs Ministry. Then the applicant will have to apply in the related Saudi embassy. The applicant should have to submit the application form along with the required documents. The time required for this purpose could be 1-3 weeks. After the issuance of the visa, the individual can be travel to Saudi Arabia.

Steop 4: On arriving in the kingdom, an individual’s application must be filled with the ministry of labor for a residency permit. Once it gets approved by the labor ministry then it will be forwarded to the ministry interior for getting the residency. Then the Directorate general for passport followed by the interior ministry will issue the Iqama. The time required for the issuance of iqama will be approx. 1-3 weeks. The iqama is the legal right to work and live in Saudi Arabia and immigrants should have to keep this along with them every time.

Last, after the issuance of Iqama the application is entered along with the interior ministry for a re-entry permit that further allows the immigrant to go in and out of Saudi Arabia while having work purposes. It takes almost 1 week to proceed.

Saudi Arabia Immigration Cost

Visa TypeEstimated Cost (USD)Notes
Tourist eVisa (Single Entry)$80For eligible nationalities only
Work VisaVariesDepends on employment type, duration, and nationality. Typically covered by employer.
Multiple Entry Visa$300-$800Cost depends on validity period and visa type.
Note: These are estimates and don’t include additional fees or medical examination costs.

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