Bringing Your Family to Saudi Arabia: A Guide to Saudi Family Visas

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A happy Pakistani Family in KSA

A happy Pakistani Family in KSA

If you’re working in Saudi Arabia and want to bring your spouse and children to live with you, you’ll need to navigate the process of obtaining Saudi family visas. While the requirements and process can seem complex, with proper planning and understanding of the rules, you can successfully reunite with your loved ones in the Kingdom. Here’s what you need to know.

Who is Eligible for a Saudi Family Visa?

Foreign workers who hold a valid Saudi residence permit (Iqama) can apply for family visas for their:

  • Spouse (must provide a valid marriage certificate)
  • Unmarried daughters (no age limit)
  • Sons under the age of 18

The worker’s Iqama must have a validity of at least 3 months beyond the requested duration of the family visa.

Saudi Family Visa Requirements

To apply for a family visa, you’ll need to provide the following documents:

  • Completed family visa application form.
  • Original passport of each family member (valid for at least 6 months.)
  • Copy of the worker’s Iqama.
  • Copy of the worker’s passport.
  • Marriage certificate (for spouse.)
  • Birth certificates (for children.)
  • Medical reports and vaccination records for family members over 16.
  • Proof of relationship, such as marriage or birth certificates, certified by the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Saudi Arabian Ministry of Foreign Afairs has recently launched a revamped website making the process of applying for visa seamless. You can access it here: KSA VISA

Processing Time and Fees

The processing time for Saudi family visas can vary, but it typically takes between 2 to 4 weeks from the date of application. In some cases, it may take longer if additional documentation is required.

Visa fees vary depending on the nationality of the applicant and the duration of the visa. As of 2023, the fee for a single-entry family visa valid for 6 months is around SAR 300 ($80) per person.

Recent Changes to Saudi Family Visa Policy

In recent years, Saudi Arabia has introduced several changes to its family visa policy to streamline the process:

  • In 2019, Saudi Arabia launched an online portal for family visa applications, allowing workers to submit documents electronically.
  • In 2020, the maximum age limit for unmarried daughters to be eligible for a family visa was removed. Previously, daughters over 25 were not eligible.
  • In 2021, the validity of family visas was extended from 6 months to 1 year, reducing the need for frequent renewals.

Expediting the Family Visa Process

While there is no official expedited processing for Saudi family visas, there are steps you can take to ensure a smooth and timely application:

  • Double-check that all required documents are complete, accurate, and properly certified.
  • Submit your application well in advance of your intended travel date.
  • If possible, use a reputable visa agency or your employer’s government relations department to handle the application process.
  • Regularly follow up on the status of your application and promptly provide any additional documentation requested.

Arriving in Saudi Arabia

Once your family members receive their visas, they can enter Saudi Arabia. Upon arrival, they will need to:

  • Obtain a residence permit (Iqama) within 90 days.
  • Undergo medical exams and obtain health insurance.
  • Enroll children in school (if applicable.)

Bringing your family to live with you in Saudi Arabia can greatly enhance your experience as an expat in the Kingdom. By carefully following the visa requirements and process, you can ensure a smooth transition for your loved ones. With the recent changes to streamline the family visa system, Saudi Arabia is making it easier than ever for foreign workers to bring their families and make the Kingdom their home.

You may also want to visit these pages related to Saudi Arabia Hiring:

Top Recruitment Agencies In Pakistan For Saudi Arabia

Hiring Requirements in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia Iqama and Work Permit Fee Structure