Muslims all over the world are dreaming of working in Saudi Arabia because of the Holy cities of Makkah and Madina. And for the non-Muslims, it is because of the abundance of opportunity this country has to offer. However, you can’t just come in without a permit, a working visa. As such, this article will give you details on how to acquire this Saudi working visa.
Normally, you need to do job hunting first in your home country. Dependents who are looking for jobs in and out of the country is a different story. Now, if you found a job to work in whatever regions in the Kingdom, it is the responsibility of your employer to process your work visa from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs after getting the approval from the Ministry of Labor. After your visa is issued, there will be an authorization code and you now need to wait for at least 8 weeks for your application to be processed, depending on the home country.
Step by Step Process of Saudi Working Visa
- If the visa is already issued to your employer, you need to look for an agent in your home country who will process your work visa application. Your employer or the recruitment company will send you the employment contract and all the information regarding the application process and the requirements of your visa. Your employer will endorse your visa along with your name to your agent. The work visa will not be processed without the help of your local agent. You must have a medical report from Saudi embassy for your home country, the authorization memo of the embassy, statement of religion form, and police clearance.
- You should have a valid passport upon the period of your employment contract. Make sure that your passport has a 6 months validity and has two blank pages for your signature upon submission of your application visa. See to it that there are no current visa stamps of Israel on your visa, else Saudi visa will not be given to you.
- You need one passport size colored photograph with white background. It must be a full face shot which the applicant is looking towards the camera. Side or angled views are not acceptable. You should fill up the form in capital letters with black ink. You need to include your email address on the application form.
- You need to have the original letter from the company in Saudi Arabia that is sponsoring you, certified by the Saudi Chamber of Commerce and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The visa number, date, position and your name should be stated in the letter. If the letter is submitted through an agency, it must have an authorization from the company that allowed the agency to finish all the requirements.
- You also have to submit the true copy of your university degree/diploma that is validated by the Saudi Arabia Cultural Mission. The certified and notarized copy of your training or technical diploma should be authenticated by your home country. Diplomas should be certified and notarized by Saudi Arabian consulate in your country.
- It is required that you have a copy of employment contract signed by your sponsor. If you are an expatriate and you are expecting to secure a higher position in a Saudi company, always remember that there is a “Saudization” going on in some companies, industries or professions such HR.
- You should have a three copies of your medical reports, two copies of lab reports, with your three passport size colored picture with white background. Your medical report should certify that you are free of any contagious disease signed by a licensed physician with the license number and address on each copy of your medical form. Medical reports should be used within three months upon issuance. Children below 16 years old don’t need to have a medical report. There are authorized laboratories by Saudi Arabia in your country that should conduct a medical test.
- You need to obtain a police report issued within six months with detailed information if you have any criminal record in your country. It is referred to be the protector in other countries.
- This documents must be submitted directly to the Saudi embassy or you can go through an agency that is referred by your company to handle the application.
Some Important Points for Working Visa in Saudi Arabia
- Minors under the age of 18 who are traveling alone or with one parent must present a notarized letter of authorization written in English or Arabic that is signed by parents or guardians.
- All the application fees are shouldered by the employer. But if the applicant is required to pay the fee, he should ask the employer first about the fees of the country of residence. Normally, there will be an agency fee, equivalent to one month of your salary.
- If you are a female expatriate who is looking forward to having a job in Saudi Arabia and is over 27 years old, could work in Saudi Arabia but should be met by their sponsor or agent of their sponsor in the airport. The length of your accommodation or period of your stay should be confirmed first which is always done for the female employees