The news of the online visa application for traveling to Saudi Arabia is proved a cool breeze for foreigners. Pilgrims visit KSA after every year for completing religious rituals as it incorporates holy places of Muslims. On the other hand, KSA has the second-largest oil reservoir in the world. The gold market of KSA and the beautiful sights of sandy deserts are attracting more visitors with every passing day
However, visitors should abide by the rules and regulations of the country they are traveling to in order to avoid any legal allegations. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has suggested modernizing conservative laws to ease foreign travelers to boost tourism. The social and economic reforms usually take time and until then, the previous policies apply to everyone traveling to KSA.
Women in Saudi Arabia were not allowed to drive or attend sports matches. Whereas, the modifications in law have permitted them to attend matches and drive. The process of amendments in law is an ongoing process whereas the tourists are always advised to follow the policies. Failing to abide by the rules might cause them trouble and in worse cases, they have to go to court as well.
Laws of Saudi Arabia
The rules and regulations of Saudi Arabia are governed by Sharia laws which are mostly extracted from the teachings of Islam. The most important thing which needs to be considered is that if any action is suspected to be ‘haram’, then the doer will have to face the legal accountabilities. Judges interpret the laws as per their discretion as Sharia law is available in written form.
In Saudi Arabia, there is a group of officers and volunteers known as ‘Mutawa’. These individuals enforce the Sharia code in KSA and report any suspects to the Committee for the Propagation of Virtue. They stroll around round the clock to keep a check and balance on whether rules are followed or not.
Travelers are not prohibited from practicing their religion in Saudi Arabia. In case a person wants to bring the bible with him, he is officially allowed for this as long as it is for private use. However, visitors are strictly prohibited to preach their religion other than Islam as it is a crime in Saudi Arabia and they will have to face legal allegations in such matters.
Things Prohibited in Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia is a safe country for tourists whereas they have to complete the tour as per the rules. It is suggested to take a look at the policies followed in KSA to save you from getting into legal trouble. Read the below-mentioned things which you should avoid while visiting KSA:
- Do not break the Lese Majeste Laws
- Avoid eating, drinking or smoking in public
- Keep a personal ID with you all the time
- Avoid wearing red on Valentine’s Day
- Do not take pictures of restricted areas
What you cannot bring in KSA?
People traveling to Saudi Arabia should be aware that the following things are strictly prohibited to bring within the premises of KSA. They should not pack these things in their travel bag or consume them in Saudi Arabia:
- Pork products
Rules and Regulations or Women Tourists
KSA has strict codes of conduct and rules that women should follow to avoid any legal accusations. Women traveling to KSA should be familiar with the following laws for women tourists and abide by them to keep their tour trouble-free
- Follow the gender segregation law
- Choose clothes that comply with local customs
- Women are not allowed to swim in public
- Do not try clothes when you are shopping
Foreign women in KSA are not expected to move around in the country with a male relative. However, they should limit meeting with males and follow the legal terms and conditions of living in Saudi Arabia during their stay. The government and legal authorities of Saudi Arabia strictly follow the rules so tourists should be well aware of the laws before stepping on the land of KSA and follow those policies.