Image Courtesy: Unsplash

Islamic Lifestyle

Saudi expands e-visa facility to 6 more countries

Saudi Arabia has expanded its e-visa facility to six additional countries to further increase visitor figures and boost its tourism sector.

The countries added to the e-visa eligibility pool include Turkiye, Thailand, Panama, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Seychelles and Mauritius, increasing the countries entitled to avail the facility to 63.

Nationals of these countries can apply for a Saudi visitor visa ahead of their journey via the official e-visa portal. The visa is valid for a year, grants multiple entries and permits a stay of up to 90 days.

The kingdom has launched a string of initiatives to breathe life into its tourism industry, previously dominated by religious tourism only.

The country rolled out its e-visa facility in 2019, initially targeting 49 countries.

Last year, it extended its regulations to provide e-visas to valid Schengen, UK or US visa holders, who have been availed of these visas to enter the respective countries prior to entering Saudi Arabia. Permanent EU, GCC, UK and US residents were also given the facility.

Earlier this year, Saudi also rolled out its free 96-hour stopover visa, enabling passengers to stay in the country for up to 96 hours for travel and religious purposes.