What is the change? U.S. nationals are now exempt from a recently introduced requirement that visitors purchase medical insurance during the visa application process.

What does the change mean? The insurance purchase step has been removed for U.S. citizen applicants during the online application process.

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate.
  • Visas/permits affected: All short-term visas, including business visas, commercial visas, work visit visas and family visit visas.
  • Who is affected: U.S. nationals.
  • Business impact: U.S. nationals will not be required to purchase the insurance, which ranges from US$100 to $300.

Background: The Saudi government introduced the mandatory insurance purchase last month for all short-term visitors. During the online application process, applicants must purchase an approved insurance policy before submitting their visa application. The purpose of the rule is to cover foreign visitors for emergency care or injuries during their stay. After receiving significant feedback from U.S. national travelers and their U.S.-based employers, Saudi authorities have granted U.S. nationals an exemption from this requirement.

BAL Analysis: The exemption removes a step and a cost in the visa process for U.S. nationals and family members making short-term visits to Saudi Arabia.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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