Saudi Arabia, a country once considered inaccessible to visitors, has recently opened its doors and is now welcoming tourists to its many attractions both old and new.
As of 2019, Latvian citizens wishing to visit the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the purposes of travel or tourism can obtain an electronic visa for Saudi Arabia from Latvia. This new development is part of a larger initiative, called Vision 2030, which aims to increase Saudi Arabia’s appeal as a destination for visitors from all over the world.
Visa Requirements for Latvian Citizens
In order to fulfil the Saudi Arabia visa requirements, travelers from Latvia must be in possession of the following:
- A valid passport issued by the government of Latvia
- A debit or credit card which can be used to pay the eVisa online processing fee
In order to successfully apply for the eVisa for Saudi Arabia from Latvia, travelers must ensure that their passport will be valid for 6 months or more following the date upon which they intended to enter Saudi Arabia, in addition to being valid when they submit their application.
How to Apply for a Visa for Saudi Arabia for Latvian Passport Holders
Applicants who meet the visa requirements for Latvian citizens traveling to Saudi Arabia will then be able to fill out and submit a short, simple online form to continue their application process. This form can be completed in under 10 minutes and asks applicants to provide the following items of personal information:
- Full name and home address
- Contact information, inc. phone number and email address
- Passport details (passport number, date of issue, expiry date)
- Proof of travel plans, such as plane tickets, hotel reservations, and itineraries
There will also be a number of basic questions regarding the applicant’s criminal record and health status, including current vaccinations.
Applicants are encouraged to carefully double-check all the information they provide when filling in the application form for their visa for Saudi Arabia from Latvia. This is because any information that is provided inaccurately or is incomplete may cause a delay in the processing time of that application. Furthermore, applications for the visa to Saudi Arabia for Latvian citizens are run through a series of international security databases during processing, and any inconsistencies that appear on the application form may cause additional complications at this stage.
Similarly, Latvians applying for the electronic visa for Latvian citizens are advised to verify that the passport details they include on their application are exactly the same as those on the passport with which they wish to travel. If this is not the case, the traveler’s Saudi eVisa will not be considered valid and will not be accepted for entry into Saudi Arabia.
Usually, applications for the eVisa to Saudi Arabia for Latvian citizens are processed within 24 hours. However, applications may take up to 3 working days to be processed. As a result, travelers should be sure to obtain their visa for Saudi Arabia from Latvia in good time before their departure for the Kingdom, bearing in mind that applications are not processed on weekends or on Saudi national holidays.
The electronic visa for Latvian citizens, once approved, is delivered to the applicant via email. While this email is a travel document in itself, Latvians visiting Saudi Arabia are advised to print a hard copy of the document and carry it with them when traveling, as officers at their Saudi port of entry may wish to see it.
Once the eVisa has been approved, it remains valid for a period of 1 year. During this period, travelers may enter Saudi Arabia for a maximum of 90 days within any 180-day window. Saudi authorities have not yet confirmed whether or not the holy cities of Mecca and Medina will be accessible to tourists traveling on the eVisa.
Travelers should note that in order to enter to enter Saudi Arabia, they are required to obtain a mandatory insurance policy issued by a Saudi insurance provider. However, this policy is included automatically along with the eVisa, and travelers do not need to take any additional steps to obtain it.
Saudi Offers Online Visa Travel to Latvian Citizens
The introduction of the electronic visa is a significant development for the historically rich and culturally complex Middle-Eastern nation, as it marks the first time that a Saudi visa has been offered for tourists.
Furthermore, the new Saudi eVisa allows travelers from Latvia and elsewhere to obtain their travel document for Saudi Arabia without the need to visit a Saudi embassy or consulate in person.
The new electronic visa for Saudi Arabia from Latvia joins a range of other visa types which are available for Latvians traveling to Saudi Arabia. These visa types are split according to the purpose of the individual’s visit, as follows:
- Business and study visas, for non-nationals working or studying in the Kingdom
- Family visas, for those visiting family members in Saudi Arabia
- The Hajj visa, for non-Saudi Muslims traveling to Saudi Arabia on religious pilgrimage