Saudi Arabia Eases visa Application Process

JEDDAH: In an attempt to make visa application process a bit easier, the Saudi Passport Department has launched two additional services on its online Abshir system for multiple entry and exit visas, and single exit and re-entry visas.

“The department wants to provide a full online service so that people need not visit its offices in person,” Arab News quoted Col. Khaled bin Hamad Al-Saikhan, assistant director for technical affairs as saying.

Users can print the exit and entry visa documentation if they want to, but this is not a requirement to complete traveling procedures, he reportedly said.

Recent statistics issued by the department indicate Abshir has recorded over 21.2 million services since its launch in 2013. These include about 8 million exit and entry visas, 650,000 final exit requests, 1.1 million iqama requests, and 7.6 million iqama renewals, the report said.

There were also 1.2 million travel permits issued, 500,00 service transfers, 250,000 profession amendments, 35,000 authorizations, 175,000 new Saudi passport requests, 350,000 passport renewals, and 1.2 million visit visa extensions, it added.

Passport officials have urged citizens and residents who use Abshir services to protect their passwords and user names. Users have also been urged to apply early if they want services provided timely, said the news portal.

The department reportedly said citizens and residents can make inquiries about services by sending a message to It is also working with Saudi Post so that beneficiaries need not visit its offices. Services are provided within three days.

Elderly people, those with disabilities and others who need special services, would have to visit the offices of the department if they cannot be assisted online, Arab News reported.



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