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You can bring your family to Saudi Arabia by filling an online application for a visit visa on the website of MOFA, KSA and by paying a minimal fee. We have explained the complete step by step procedure to apply for a family visit visa in Saudi Arabia in 2020.
Who can get a visa?
As of 2020, you can apply for a family visit visa of Saudi Arabia for the following 6 family members;
- Wife – You can apply for a Saudi visit visa for only one wife at a time.
- Children – You can apply for a Saudi visit visa for all your children irrespective of their age.
- Father in Law
- Mother in Law
Can we apply for a visa for a brother or sister?
It is important to mention that as of 2020, expatriates cannot apply for a family visit visa for brother, married or unmarried sister, sister-in-law and any other relation apart from the list given above. However, they can come to Saudi Arabia on either a Saudi tourist visa or an Umrah visa.
Before you make up your mind to apply for a family visit visa in KSA, you should know the requirements to apply for it. Unfortunately, not every expatriate living in Saudi Arabia is eligible to apply for a visit visa. Here is the list of requirements;
- 3 months of Iqama validity.
- You need to have an acceptable profession. Even if your profession is not in the list, you should still give it a try as it does not cost more than SR 35.
This is one of the main reasons that house drivers and the expatriates working on a labour profession cannot apply for a family visit visa.
Step 01: Family Visit Visa application form
Once you have satisfied yourself that you meet the requirements, you can proceed to fill the family visit visa application form online through the MOFA website. You need the following documents to fill the Saudi Visit Visa application in KSA;
- Applicant's passport.
- The Saudi visa of the person who is applying for the visa.
Open the following link through Google Chrome https://visa.mofa.gov.sa/Home/Services/citizens and click on the Citizens and Residents > Resident > Family Visit Visa Application for Residents.
In the next step to fill a sample application form for a family visit visa in Saudi Arabia online, you will have to enter your Iqama number and the date of expiry and the visa number.
- It is important to mention here that the MOFA system does not accept the expiry date written on the face of the Iqama and therefore, you need to check the Iqama expiry date online through the Absher system to fill the form.
Meanwhile, the system will automatically fetch your name, your profession, date of birth, the name of your sponsor, your nationality and the Sponsor ID. You can write these details yourself if the system does not fetch it automatically.
- You need to enter your full office address in the Arabic language in front of Title or عنوان while filling the application form. Keep in mind that many applications for the family visit visa are rejected due to this reason.
- Enter your Mobile Number in the format 00966591234567.
- Enter your Email Address
- Visa number is mentioned on the visa which was stamped on your passport at the time when you entered Saudi Arabia.
In the next screen, you will have to enter the purpose of a family visit visa in Arabic i.e. زيارة عائلية and click on the “Addition” button.
In the next step, you will have to mention the name of the person whom you want to bring on a family visit visa in Saudi Arabia.
- Name of the Applicant: Names should be in the English language as per the spellings are written on the passport. Keep in mind that many applications for Saudi visit visas are rejected due to this reason.
- Select the religion of the person who is invited i.e. Muslim or Non-Muslim.
- DOB: Enter the date of birth of the applicant as per the passport.
- Place of Birth: Enter the place of birth of the applicant as per the passport in the Arabic language.
- Enter the Passport Number
- Enter the Passport type i.e. Special or Normal
- Enter the passport Issue and Expiry Date as it is written on the passport
- Profession: Write the profession of the person in the Arabic language.
- Select the nationality of the applicant from the drop-down list.
- Choose the gender of the person.
- Select the city from which you will be stamping the visa through the Saudi Embassy or Saudi Consulate. It can be the city in your home country or any other city where the applicant lives on a permanent basis.
- Your relationship with that person.
The difference in single-entry and multiple-entry family visit visa
You will have to select the type of family visit visa you are applying for the family.
- The single-entry visit visa is issued for a period of 30 days only with 5 possible extensions of 30 days each.
- The one-year multiple-entry Saudi visit visa is issued for a period of 90 days which can be extended once for a period of further 90 days. The duration of stay during one visit cannot exceed 180 days. Recommended: Types and Validity of the Saudi Family Visit Visa
In the last step, you need to review the filled Saudi family visit visa Application form. If all the details in the filled application form are correct, proceed to take a print of it.
- Make sure you save the application number as you might need it in the future.
Step 02: Submitting the Application to the Employer
In the next step to apply for the Saudi Visit Visa;
- Your sponsor needs to sign and stamp the application either manually or electronically and;
- Submit it to the Chamber of Commerce for authentication. You can either go to the Chamber of Commerce or your sponsor can apply for it online through the COC portal.
Step 03: Check Visit Visa Application Status
After submitting the application to the chamber of commerce either physically or electronically, the status of your family visit visa application will change on the website of the MOFA, Saudi Arabia. Officially they say, it takes 3 days but normally it takes a week or sometimes a month to process the visa.
You can check the family visit visa status by clicking through this link https://visa.mofa.gov.sa/
- Select “Application submitted to MOFA” in front of “Search for”.
- Enter the family visit visa application number.
- Type the Iqama Number in the third box and;
- Write the captcha code in the fourth box.
If you want to understand the different meanings of messages which appear on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website while checking the status, check this article. Recommended: Check Visit Visa Application Status Online
In some cases, your Saudi Visit Visa application is not approved straightforward. They will ask you to submit the application along with some documents to the MOFA.
If this is the case, attach all the documents mentioned above with the visit visa application which you printed from the MOFA website and submit it to the nearest office of the MOFA in KSA.
Step 04: Submit the Application to the Saudi Embassy
After the approval of the family visit visa in KSA, you need to contact an agent in your home country and send him the PDF copy of the visa and ask your family to contact him for the visa process. Make sure you stamp the Saudi visit visa within its validity so that it does not expire.
In some countries such as Pakistan, the Saudi Government has established Etimad Centers. Your family will have to take an online appointment at Etimad Center and be present there.
Step 05: Check Saudi Visa Status
After submitting your passport to the embassy, you can check the Saudi Visa status with passport number online.
The Fee for the family visit visa in 2020
The fee to apply for a family visit visa in Saudi Arabia is SR 300 as of 2020. Your family needs to pay it in your home country to the Saudi Embassy through an agent.
What if the application is rejected?
However, if the MOFA rejects your family visit visa application, they will also mention a reason for rejection.
- You can drop a comment below with the reason and we will guide you further what to do.
- Otherwise, you can also discuss it with the GRO of your company for guidance. Here are the top 5 reasons for the rejection of a family visit visa by the authorities.
Apply for the family visit visa through Istiqdam
Sometimes it happens that the application for the family visit visa is rejected for any reason despite applying it several times online. In such cases, you should apply for the family visit visa through Istiqdam. Here is how you need to proceed;
- Get the appointment from Istiqdam
- Download the family visit visa application form and fill it in Arabic. It needs to be attested by the Chamber of Commerce.
- A letter of introduction from the employer which needs to be stamped by the chamber of commerce.
- Copy of marriage certificate if you are applying for in-laws.
- Copy of your Iqama and Passport
Visit the Istiqdam office
- Submit all the documents to the Istiqdam office. Once the documents are submitted to the Istiqdam, they will issue you a Green and White paper.
- After this fill the application online following the guidelines given above. Here is the link https://visa.mofa.gov.sa/Home/Services/citizens
Visit the MOFA
The last step is to visit the MOFA with a print of your online application along with the paper given to you by the Istiqdam. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will receive your application.
Once the documents are submitted, you can check the status of approval of application online.
Cancel Family Visit Visa
Sometimes it happens that you enter wrong information while filling the family visit visa application form. In this case, you will have to cancel the current family visit visa and apply for a new one.
If you apply another time not following what I have stated below, your family visit visa application will be rejected.
- In order to cancel your family visit visa in Saudi Arabia, make a new application for the same applicant from the beginning and write “Edit visa no XXXXXX” in the Title or عنوان. Please replace XXX with the actual application number. Follow the same procedure from the beginning until the end.
- In this way, when the officer will check your application, he will know that you want to edit your visa already applied. He will cancel the earlier family visit visa in the system and approve the new one.
- Once the Saudi Embassy stamps the family visit visa on the passport, it cannot be canceled. You will have to wait for its expiry before applying for a new visa.
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