Saudi Arabia is set to host its very first Formula One Grand Prix in 2021 after being officially announced by Formula One Management (FOM) and the Saudi Automobile and Motorcycle Federation (SAMF) in November 2020.
The newest event on Formula One’s international roster is an occasion that motor racing fans won’t want to miss. It is also the perfect event to combine with a vacation to the Arabian kingdom.
To help visitors plan ahead, this article outlines what to expect from the first-ever Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. It covers details about how visitors can prepare to attend the inaugural race and how to travel to the country safely and securely with the help of a Saudi eVisa.
When Will Saudi Arabia Host a Grand Prix?
Saudi Arabia’s first-ever Grand Prix will be the penultimate round of the Formula One World Championship in 2021. It is scheduled to be hosted on the weekend of the 26th – 28th November and just one week before the season’s final race in Abu Dhabi on the 5th December.
Where Will Saudi Arabia’s Grand Prix Circuit Be?
The race is set to be held on a street circuit in the city of Jeddah initially and will be run as a night race. The cars will race on a flood-lit Grand Prix circuit located in the Jeddah Corniche resort area created by seasoned track designer Hermann Tilke, who was also responsible for also designing the impressive Yas Marina Circuit in neighboring Abu Dhabi.
This venue will allow attendees to enjoy the glitz and the glamour of Formula One racing alongside the gorgeous Red Sea coastline and modern entertainment facilities the city offers. Jeddah is one of Saudi Arabia’s most popular destinations and beach getaways, making this a superb venue for a Grand Prix.
However, this is expected to be a temporary arrangement for the first few years of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. From 2023 onwards the race is likely to move to a special purpose-built circuit in Qiddiya, which is being constructed just 30km outside the capital city of Riyadh.
How to Travel to Saudi Arabia as a Tourist
Saudi Arabia was once a very difficult country to visit as a tourist. However, this has changed in the last few years. The nation has increasingly opened its doors to foreign visitors as part of the country’s Vision 2030 initiative to promote the future of tourism in the country.
Traveling to Saudi Arabia today is relatively easy with the help of a Saudi eVisa. Citizens from over 40 eligible countries can apply online for an eVisa to enter the country for tourism and attend sporting events. This includes nationals from:
- China (including Hong Kong and Macau)
- Czech Republic
- New Zealand
- San Marino
- South Korea
- United Kingdom
- United States
Once the visa has been authorized it is issued directly to the applicant via email so it can be printed out in advance of arrival in the country. It lasts for one year and allows multiple entries of up to 3 months at a time.
Furthermore, Jeddah’s international airport is one of the official entry points where visitors may arrive with a valid eVisa. As a result, getting to and from the Grand Prix will be very simple for foreign fans traveling from overseas to watch.
What Other Events Can Sports Fans Enjoy in Saudi Arabia?
Saudi Arabia is fast becoming one of the premier destinations for sports and entertainment fans. The once cloistered country is rapidly opening up to foreign travelers and has already hosted many major international events for sports such as:
The announcement of the newest destination on the Formula One calendar is an exciting prospect for both followers of the sport and for local motor racing fans. The Grand Prix in 2021 is just one of the many events that can be enjoyed with a Saudi eVisa and is one that travelers won’t want to miss.