Saudi Arabia Announces Opening of New Visa Offices, Other Initiatives to Boost Tourism from India

Saudi Arabia is making significant strides to tap into the Indian tourism market. Through collaborations, visa office openings, air route expansions, and the launch of a luxurious entertainment district, Saudi Arabia aims to position itself as the top choice for Indian travelers seeking leisure experiences.
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Saudi Arabia has taken significant steps towards its tourism strategy to capitalize on the influx of Indian travellers into the country. With the aim of establishing India as its largest tourism source market by 2030, Saudi Arabia has entered into corporate partnerships and introduced a range of tourism-related offerings.

Opening of VFS Tasheer Visa Offices

To streamline the visa application process, Saudi Arabia has announced the opening of several VFS Tasheer Visa offices by the end of May. These offices will serve as authorized visa partners for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ensuring efficient and secure administrative visa services for applicants.

Apart from this the country has also recently announced the new e-visa system for international travellers arriving from India, UAE, Jordan, Egypt, Bangladesh, Indonesia and the Philippines. The new system, which does away with the traditional visa sticker on passports, took effect on May 1, 2023.

Tie-up with TATA Indian Premier League (IPL)

The Saudi Tourism Authority has also partnered with the TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) to launch tailor-made promotional packages in collaboration with leading travel agencies, including Akbar Travels, SOTC, Make My Trip, Cleartrip, and Ease My Trip.

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These packages aim to position Saudi Arabia as the premier leisure destination for Indian travellers.

New Air Connections with IndiGo

IndiGo, leading Indian low-cost carrier recently unveiled a new airline route from Ahmedabad to Jeddah, with daily direct flights commencing on August 11, 2023. This development is expected to further bolster tourism between India and Saudi Arabia by providing convenient and accessible travel options.

Launch of VIA Riyadh

Saudi Arabia has announced the opening of VIA Riyadh, scheduled for May 18. VIA Riyadh is set to become a hub for leisure and entertainment, showcasing Saudi Arabia’s latest luxury shopping and entertainment district.

The venue will feature The St. Regis hotel, 23 international brands, 17 restaurants, and seven cinemas. VIA Riyadh aims to promote Saudi Arabia’s entertainment sector and contribute to the diversification of the economy as part of the Saudi Vision 2030.

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Introduction of Stopover Visa

In a bid to attract more visitors, Saudi Arabia has introduced the Stopover Visa, allowing Indian passengers traveling with Saudia to spend up to 96 hours in Saudi Arabia and enjoy a complimentary hotel night.

The digital integration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs facilitates the issuing of the transit visa and links it to the flight ticket within three minutes.

Commitment to Tourism Development

The initiatives undertaken by Saudi Arabia, including partnerships with airlines, leading tour operators, and IPL, underscore its dedication to developing the tourism sector. By showcasing its diverse offerings for Indian travelers, Saudi Arabia aims to position itself as the new frontier for leisure tourism.

With its strategic corporate partnerships, improved visa services, expanded air connections, and enticing entertainment destinations, Saudi Arabia is primed to tap into India’s immense tourism potential and establish itself as a premier choice for Indian travellers.

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Manish Khandelwal
Manish Khandelwal

Manish Khandelwal, a travel-tech enthusiast with over a decade of experience in the travel industry. Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Travelobiz.com, he's passionate about writing.

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