Saudi Arabia opens to tourists

Asia and Oceania Lifestyle

… no African countries on the list

… Kingdom relaxes dress code for women

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is opening up to international tourism and will relax the dress code for female tourists.

Visas for unaccompanied women will also be available without restrictions of the past.

An envisaged tourism boom is expected to create one million jobs and lessen the kingdom’s dependence on oil revenue.

On Friday, the Middle East nation announced 49 countries whose residents will be eligible for visas.

No African country was on the list.

The holy cities of Mecca and Medina will remain off limits to non-Muslim tourists, and alcohol will still be banned.

Until now, visas were mostly issued to resident workers and their dependents, business travellers and Muslim pilgrims.