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3-year entry ban on expat workers who fail to return on time
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 04 - 06 - 2015

Saudi Gazette report

JEDDAH — Those expatriate workers who fail to return to the Kingdom before the expiry of their exit-reentry visas will not be allowed to enter Saudi Arabia for three years, General Directorate of Passports (Jawazat) Director of Media and Public Relations Col. Muhammad Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saad was quoted as saying on Wednesday.
The ban on entry, which will be counted from the date of the expiry of the reentry visa, applies to workers only, Al-Saad said in a statement to the Saudi Press Agency.
Many expatriates expressed surprise at this decision, saying that often unavoidable circumstances force them to overstay.
“My father went to India, but he could not return on time because his mother died,” said an Indian IT professional.
“Now we are arranging to extend the reentry visa duration for him,” he said, expressing concern after he came to know about the new rule.
Of late, the Ministry of Interior has made it much easier for expats to issue visas for their dependents through the Abshir system. Now expats can avail of these online services without the need to visit the Jawazat or the Foreign Ministry.
Saudis and expatriates can sign up for Abshir services by visiting
The Abshir service allows them to have access to several online services such as accessing their personal information, issuance of exit/re-entry visas for dependents and laborers, issuance or cancellation of final exit visas and issuance of travel permits.
In 2013, the Jawazat announced that there was no need to carry a printout of the exit-reentry visa.
The exit and re-entry visa details on the website ( will be considered as authentic and final, and as such there is no need to carry a printout, it announced. But many expats faced problems while returning as airlines wanted to check the validity of their visas.

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