Illustrative image. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Saudi Arabia has announced that expats who left Saudi Arabia on exit and re-entry visas and had not returned within the specific period will be banned from entering the Kingdom for 3 years.

A Saudi exit/re-entry visa is an essential document for employees - and for family members or domestic workers under their sponsorship - wishing travel out of Saudi Arabia and return within a stipulated period of time.

According to the General Directorate of Passports (Jawazat), the phrase “exited and did not return” will be recorded for any expat bearing an exit and re-entry visa, automatically after two months from the visa’s expiry date.

Jawazat indicated that it is not required to visit the Passport Department, as it was the case previously, to register expats who had left and had not returned. The period of entry ban is calculated from the date of expiry of the visa, and is based on the Hijri calendar.

The Jawazat stressed that the decision to ban those exceeding the grace period does not include dependents but only the sponsor.