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Saudia (SV) Joining Date announced: 29 May 2012

Saudia (SV) Joining Date announced: 29 May 2012

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Old May 31, 12, 5:38 am
  #31  
 
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BTW, when did they rebrand back to "Saudia"?
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Old May 31, 12, 6:53 am
  #32  
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Originally Posted by nomad1974 View Post
BTW, when did they rebrand back to "Saudia"?
Tuesday, alongside joining ST, according to the press release. They are also supposedly undergoing some privatization.
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Old May 31, 12, 6:56 am
  #33  
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
Its mentioned here:

http://www.saudiembassy.net/services/transit_visa.aspx




Doesn't this mean that if the transit is more than 18 hours one needs a transit visa and since 72 hours is a long time to sit in an airport, so I am guessing one is allowed to get out. Looks like this is a middle east thing, Kuwait also has it.
This sounds right to me, but for a transit visa, the purpose should be transit, not relatives. Could they get in trouble?
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Old May 31, 12, 9:00 am
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Originally Posted by mtkeller View Post
Tuesday, alongside joining ST, according to the press release. They are also supposedly undergoing some privatization.
They will privatize their catering division in three weeks time in an IPO.

I hope it will not end up losing value like facebook
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Old May 31, 12, 2:00 pm
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Originally Posted by NA-Flyer View Post
They will privatize their catering division in three weeks time in an IPO.

I hope it will not end up losing value like facebook
Hopefully the privatization will result in the elimination of donkey meat served on board.
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Old Jul 15, 12, 8:50 pm
  #36  
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
This sounds right to me, but for a transit visa, the purpose should be transit, not relatives. Could they get in trouble?
Good question. There is a sentence like this:

"Transit visas do not grant the right to residence, visitation or employment."

http://www.saudiembassy.net/services/transit_visa.aspx

I was sure there was some requirement that one has to fly Saudia, but don't see that in the above link. I am hoping to use a mix of Star/1W carriers for this.

Another FTer PMed me and mentioned he did it for 38 hours. Anybody else have thoughts on whether this is too risky? My wife and I are US citizens of Indian origin. I thinking about this when visiting Israel by flying into AMM going to Israel through the land border and then to Egypt. The return flight will be from Egypt. Makes things more risky.
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Old Dec 3, 12, 11:28 pm
  #37  
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Just want to mention that I was able to visit Saudi Arabia using the 72 hour transit visa. Getting the visa was not very complicated. Had to fill out a form and an online application that costs USD 10. Some tips:

1. The online application should be done in IE, not google chrome as I first tried.
2. I had some difficulty paying the fee. Tried several Visa cards, even my Sapphire that is verified by visa, but could not. Finally did it with my AA Citi Bronze MC.
3. Immigration proceedings for first timers are a nightmare. We stood in line for an hour and 45 minutes. They take finger and eye scans and can take almost 10 minutes per person. My relatives told me that it can take upto 3 hours. So if you are flying a domestic segment, make sure you have a sufficient buffer. Also a lot of Indians work there, so try to find a flight that reaches when there are not many flights from India. If you have a family with small children they will help you cut the line.
4. I've heard that the Washington office is more lenient than the NY office.

Last edited by UA Fan; Mar 29, 13 at 11:46 am
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Old Dec 4, 12, 7:15 pm
  #38  
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
3. Immigration proceedings for first timers are a nightmare. We stood in line for an hour and 45 minutes. They take finger and eye scans and can take almost 10 minutes per person. My relatives told me that it can take upto 3 hours. So if you are flying a domestic segment, make sure you have a sufficient buffer. Also a lot of Indians work there, so try to find a flight that reaches when there are not many flights from India. If you have a family with small children they will help you cut the line.
Interesting. My one trip to KSA was on the SV LHR-RUH flight that got in around midnight. I think I queued for five minutes, but I did have a visa. Didn't notice what was going on in the other queues.
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Old Dec 4, 12, 7:50 pm
  #39  
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Originally Posted by mtkeller View Post
My one trip to KSA was on the SV LHR-RUH flight that got in around midnight. I think I queued for five minutes, but I did have a visa. Didn't notice what was going on in the other queues.
We flew in on a Sat night at 11ish on KLM and landed in DMM. The officer had no idea what kind of visa we had as there was no sponsor and he did not know English. So after immigration we were sent to the supervisors office. Asked us how long we planned to stay and where we were headed next. Then asked if we have anybody in DMM. He seemed happy to hear that although I was nervous as the visa rule states that one should not use it for visitation. At the end he smiled and said "welcome to SA."


My uncle who went there recently took 10 minutes as well although his baggage check was meticulous. I'm guessing that since you flew in J you were ahead of the line? How long did it take to process you and did you take the finger print and eye scan?

Last edited by UA Fan; Apr 1, 14 at 5:27 pm
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Old Dec 7, 12, 6:35 am
  #40  
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
My uncle who went there recently took 10 minutes as well although his baggage check was meticulous. I'm guessing that since you flew in J you were ahead of the line? How long did it take to process you and did you take the finger print and eye scan?
I was on the first bus to the terminal (ugh…worse than CDG's bus gates for widebodies since it's 12 billion degrees in RUH even in the middle of the night), but I thought I needed to fill out a landing form that the FAs hadn't provided, so I wound up behind some fraction of the pax. My agent spoke little/no English as well. Grunted at me a couple of times, scanned my passport, wrote a number on the page adjacent to my visa (didn't realize it was a number until I later learned their number system, although it should have been obvious as he wrote it left-to-right rather than right-to-left), stamped my passport, and sent me on my way. No finger or eye scans (May 2011). Baggage scan was a joke. Filippino guy in a jump suit was making sure every bag went through an X-ray machine, but the Saudi guy who was supposed to be watching the screen was doing other things. All that mattered was that the bag went through the machine, apparently.
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