Saudi Arabia ease travel restrictions

Saudi Arabia eases travel restrictions

Sarah Peddie

Saudi Arabia Eases Covid19 Travel Restrictions

Residents of Saudi Arabia who have been vaccinated are now able to leave the Kingdom for the first time in more than a year.

Saudi citizens have been banned from travelling abroad for over 14 months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The travel ban has been in place since March last year which has impacted students who were studying abroad and many others.

But now, vaccinated citizens can travel outside the Kingdom. The country has vaccinated over 11.5 million people with at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. 

Even with just one dose, residents are eligible to leave the country and travel abroad under the new guidelines. 

People who have recently recovered from the virus and residents under the age of 18 with travel insurance will also be allowed to travel.

Travellers must show their health statuses to airport officials through the government’s health app - Tawakkalna. Residents who return from their travels abroad must quarantine at home and also get a Covid test.

There are still some countries which remain on a restricted travel list and it includes high-risk nations such as Lebanon, Yemen, Iran, Turkey and India.

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The Kingdom’s airline of Saudia will operate flights which go to 71 different destinations - including 43 international destinations. Among them are Cairo, Sharm el-Sheikh, Dubai, Kuala Lumpur, Paris, Athens, Frankfurt, Washington and New York.

Residents from 20 countries are still banned from entering Saudi and these include the US, UK, UAE and France.

So far, Saudi Arabia has recorded over 434,000 cases of Covid and around 7,100 deaths since the start of the pandemic. 

Earlier on, we told of how Saudi Arabia has set out plans to invest $66 billion in healthcare infrastructure and boost the private sector participation by 2030.

According to a new Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) report published on April 4 the Kingdom plans to boost private sector participation from 40 per cent to 65 per cent. 

The report says the population in Saudi Arabia will grow from 34.4 million to 39.4 million by 2030 and estimated it could rise to 45 million by 2050. 

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