Do not enter the country on a Saudi Laissez Passer (temporary travel document), or you may encounter difficulty leaving the Kingdom. We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens enter Saudi Arabia on a Saudi passport or a U.S. passport and Saudi visa, but not a Laissez Passer.
To facilitate travel into the Kingdom, Saudi embassies sometimes issue a Laissez Passer for presumed Saudi citizens, such as children of a Saudi parent or parents who were married outside of Saudi Arabia; however, the traveler must then obtain a Saudi passport before leaving.
Saudi nationality is not conferred quickly or easily, and the processing time for a Saudi passport in these cases has often been six months or more. Obtaining a U.S. passport at the Embassy will not help, as you will not be able to leave Saudi Arabia without a visa.
Saudi Arabia does not recognize dual nationality. At times, Saudi authorities have confiscated the U.S. passports of U.S-Saudi dual nationals applying for Saudi citizenship. If this happens to you or someone you know, report the incident to the U.S. Embassy. This does not constitute loss of U.S. citizenship.Length of Stay: If you overstay your visa, you face fines, detention, and/or deportation.
Upon arrival, confirm your permitted length of stay with Saudi immigration authorities. Dates are calculated in accordance with the Hijri calendar, which is significantly different from the Gregorian calendar. Resolving such errors can take several weeks.
The U.S. Embassy is unable to intercede, reduce fines, or prevent incarceration if you violate Saudi law.
Travel Bans: When placed under a travel ban, you cannot exit the country, even if you are a U.S. citizen. Travel bans are rigidly enforced and can take months or even years to resolve. Only Saudi Arabian authorities and sponsors can remove travel bans.
The government may issue travel bans on people who are:
charged with criminal offenses
involved in financial or labor disputes/have unpaid debts
Private citizens may also initiate travel bans against other private citizens for various reasons.Yemen Travel: We strongly advise U.S. citizens against travel to Yemen. For U.S. citizens departing Yemen we strongly discourage departing via the Yemen-Saudi Arabia border because it can be dangerous and U.S. citizens who attempt to do so are routinely detained or turned away by Saudi authorities. See our Yemen Crisis webpage for further information.
Residency Permits: If you are seeking residency in Saudi Arabia, make sure you have all required legal documents authenticated before arriving. The U.S. Embassy in Riyadh cannot provide this service.
Work Visas: If you plan on working in Saudi Arabia, you must obtain a work visa before you arrive. If you work on another visa type, you risk financial penalties and deportation.
HIV/AIDS: To obtain work and residence permits, you are required to obtain a medical report or physical examination confirming that you are free from contagious diseases, including HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis. If you test positive for HIV/AIDS, you will not be allowed to work in the Kingdom. Saudi Arabia has not imposed HIV/AIDS travel restrictions on other categories of travelers. Please inquire directly with the Embassy of Saudi Arabia before you travel.