Saudi Arabia to Introduce Cruise e-Visa Service
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has implemented some changes in its visa policy. The introduction of the new cruise visa service is one of them and aims to encourage more foreigners to visit the country by sea. Tavelers, however, will first need to have confirmed cruise booking in order to apply for the new Nautical Transit Visa.
The authorities of the KSA plan to invest up to $200 billion and welcome 100 million international tourists by 2030. It is an optimistic plan for the tourism sector in the KSA, which has been stricken by the worldwide coronavirus situation.
Tourism plays an essential role in the country's future vision. The plan assumes that contributions to the GDP from the tourism sector itself should make up 10 %. The Kingdom plans to create new jobs and build new hotels and other tourism facilities.
Nautical Transit Visa application
The new electronic visa dedicated to cruise passengers can be requested upon booking the cruise package via a cruise agency.
The maritime visa applicant will need to fill out the online application for the Nautical Transit Visa. In the next step, the application will be sent for further processing to the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Cruise travelers can also make their cruise visa applications after booking the cruise holidays directly on the website of MOFA. Nevertheless, the application can take more time than when choosing the first option.
It is necessary to have a booked cruise to apply for the maritime e-Visa to Saudi Arabia. It is impossible to first get a visa before booking the cruise.
Other types of visas to Saudi Arabia
The Nautical Tranist Visa is the recent type of electronic visa introduced by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Travelers planning a trip to the KSA by land or air should remember that they can apply for a tourist e-Visa.
This visa is a multiple-entry travel authorization covering all tourism-related activities. Its holder can enter and re-enter Saudi Arabia numerous times as long as the visa remains valid (one year). Every single visit can last up to 3 months.