Copy of 2020-07-23T093704Z_1110819924_RC2XYH90Q2AU_RTRMADP_3_SAUDI-TOURISM-VILLAGE-1595732708964
Tourists visit the cultural village of Rijal Almaa on the outskirts of Abha, Saudi Arabia July 17, 2020. File photo used for illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: REUTERS

Dubai: Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Tourism said on Thursday that residents in the GCC countries are allowed to apply for a tourist visa online, while residents in the UK, the US and the EU can get it on arrival.

Ahmed Al Khateeb, Minister of Tourism, approved a ministerial decree introducing new amendments to visa rules, making it quicker, easier and more accessible to visit the Kingdom

According to the new visa amendments, GCC residents can apply for a tourist visa online, while holders of a valid tourist or business visa from the UK, US or Schengen Agreement countries will be able to apply for a visa on arrival, provided that it has been used at least once to enter the country granting the visa.

Al Khateeb said: “Enhancing the visitor experience is at the heart of the tourism sector. Saudi Arabia is welcoming more and more visitors from all corners of the globe by harnessing digital innovation to streamline the travel journey for those wishing to visit the Kingdom.”

“This is an important step as we develop a sustainable, resilient and competitive tourism sector. Tourism can build bridge across various cultures and connects communities from all over the world,” he added.

One million e-visas have been issued since the e-visa system was launched in 2019, the ministry said in a statement.