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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 18, 12, 3:46 am
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Saudia (SV) Joining Date announced: 29 May 2012

Now there's an official press release from SV confirming the 29 May 2012 joining date that SkyTeam had semi-announced on Facebook. Not yet seeing a press release on the ST site. Interesting that DL has started earning/burning on AR prior to them joining ST, but still no word on what they'll be doing with SV.

(h/t to @airlineroute on Twitter, aka jimyvr on FT)
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Old May 18, 12, 1:30 pm
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I hope Saudi will allow people to transit without a visa.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:52 am
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
I hope Saudi will allow people to transit without a visa.
As far as I know, Saudia Arabia already does allow 'transit without visa', according to the standard TWOV rules and for a fairly limited duration of transit.
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Old May 22, 12, 9:07 am
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yes they do allow transit without visa

just flew them BOM-RUL-LHR and back with wife and kids

transit was no problem

being skytem silver i just wish they had joined earlier
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Old May 22, 12, 1:13 pm
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Originally Posted by KQ321 View Post
As far as I know, Saudia Arabia already does allow 'transit without visa', according to the standard TWOV rules and for a fairly limited duration of transit.
Indeed:

[KVS Availability Tool 7.0.0/Diamond - TIMATIC: Country Information: Visa]
Code:
[Visa Information] Saudi Arabia (SA)

Visa required.

 Visa Exemptions:
- Nationals of Saudi Arabia.
- Nationals of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United
  Arab Emirates holding their national passport.
- Holders of a Re-entry Permit.

 TWOV (Transit Without Visa):
- Holders of onward tickets for a max. transit [[TIRULES/R32]] 
  time of 18 hours when inbound flight is operated by Saudi
  Arabian Airlines.
- Holders of onward tickets for a max. transit [[TIRULES/R32]] 
  time of 8 hours when inbound flight is not operated by Saudi
  Arabian Airlines.
- Only one transit stop-over in Saudi Arabia is permitted.
 - Except when flying on Saudi Arabian Airlines, where a
   second transit point is permitted.

 Merchant Seamen:
- Visa is not required for Merchant Seamen if their
  nationality is mentioned under visa exemptions applicable to
  normal passport holders.
- Visa is not required if arriving by air in order to board a
  ship, or if arriving by ship in order to board an aircraft,
  provided the procedure is completely arranged by the
  shipping agent:
 - not applicable to nationals of Albania, Armenia,
   Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, China (People's Rep.), Cuba,
   Czech Rep., Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Korea (Dem.
   People's Rep. of), Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Mongolia,
   Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Russian Fed., Serbia,
   Slovakia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and
   Viet Nam.
- Merchant Seamen arriving by air in order to board a ship, or
  if arriving by ship in order to board an aircraft must
  travel on duty, hold a confirmation letter and the procedure
  must be completely arranged by the shipping company.
  Merchant Seamen are only allowed to land at Dammam and
  Jeddah airports and must be met on arrival by a
  representative of the shipping company. 

 Crew Members:
- Visa required except for crew members holding a written
  immigration approval, which has been previously arranged.

 Military:
- Same regulations as for passengers apply.

 Visa Issuance:
- Alien resident minors, aged under 18 years, with an expired
  re-entry visa can obtain their visa on arrival, provided
  traveling with their parents or guardian. Fee: SAR 200.-.

 Additional Information:
- A pilgrim visa is worded in the Arab language only. Business
  and visitors' visas are bilingual (Arabic/English).
- Visas issued to nationals of South Africa holding temporary
  passports, must contain passport number.
- Visitors are required to hold documents required for their
  next destination.
- Valid visas in expired passports  are accepted, provided
  accompanied by a valid passport of the same nationality. 

 Warning:
- Visitors not holding return/onward tickets could be refused
  entry. 

CHECK [[TINEWS/N1]] - LONDON 2012 OLYMPIC and PARALYMPIC GAMES
(INCL.  ADDITIONAL INFO FOR IRELAND (REP. OF))

22 May 2012 / 20:12 [UTC]
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Old May 22, 12, 2:06 pm
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If I have understood this correctly, it looks like one can take a domestic flight in SA if the entire itinerary is on SV right? Easy way to have a quick look at the country?
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Old May 22, 12, 5:08 pm
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
Easy way to have a quick look at the country?
Not much to see there except if you like to tour the sahara.
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Old May 22, 12, 5:16 pm
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
If I have understood this correctly, it looks like one can take a domestic flight in SA if the entire itinerary is on SV right? Easy way to have a quick look at the country?
Yes, and it most likely would be something like XXX-JED/DMM-RUH-YYY, since a number of their long-haul services are direct flights passing through JED or DMM on the way to/from RUH. Having flown SV in J on one of their flagship routes (see TR), I would prefer to minimize the time spent flying on their aircraft in the future. I wonder if they'll make any adjustment to the TWOV rules for those inbound on flights operated by SkyTeam carriers other than SV. AF moved out of the "other carriers" terminal at RUH to join SV in their terminal about the time that SV's joining was announced and they began codesharing. They split operation of CDG-RUH, so it's totally possible to be inbound on a day when you have to fly AF and connect to SV for your onward flight. I know that the government wants to promote use of SV, but it seems like they might also be interested in taking steps to help strengthen their ST ties.
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Old May 22, 12, 7:56 pm
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Originally Posted by mtkeller View Post
Yes, and it most likely would be something like XXX-JED/DMM-RUH-YYY, since a number of their long-haul services are direct flights passing through JED or DMM on the way to/from RUH. Having flown SV in J on one of their flagship routes (see TR), I would prefer to minimize the time spent flying on their aircraft in the future. I wonder if they'll make any adjustment to the TWOV rules for those inbound on flights operated by SkyTeam carriers other than SV. AF moved out of the "other carriers" terminal at RUH to join SV in their terminal about the time that SV's joining was announced and they began codesharing. They split operation of CDG-RUH, so it's totally possible to be inbound on a day when you have to fly AF and connect to SV for your onward flight. I know that the government wants to promote use of SV, but it seems like they might also be interested in taking steps to help strengthen their ST ties.
Thanks I was looking for someone who purposely routed their flights with a domestic segment so that they could step out for some time.
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Old May 23, 12, 1:45 am
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
Thanks I was looking for someone who purposely routed their flights with a domestic segment so that they could step out for some time.
Having spent most of a week there, I wouldn't see why anyone would want to do that. It's an interesting country, but there is basically no tourism because of the government's visa policies. Thus, unless you have some clue of what you're doing/where you're going, you're not going to have much of an experience beyond "OMG, hot and sand!" (There are places online you can get suggestions of things to see/do, generally from US/UK expats living in KSA, but you really have to seek it out.)
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Old May 23, 12, 8:11 am
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Originally Posted by mtkeller View Post
Having spent most of a week there, I wouldn't see why anyone would want to do that. It's an interesting country, but there is basically no tourism because of the government's visa policies. Thus, unless you have some clue of what you're doing/where you're going, you're not going to have much of an experience beyond "OMG, hot and sand!" (There are places online you can get suggestions of things to see/do, generally from US/UK expats living in KSA, but you really have to seek it out.)
Have some relatives in DMM. Plus just want to get bragging rights .
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Old May 23, 12, 9:06 am
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
Thanks I was looking for someone who purposely routed their flights with a domestic segment so that they could step out for some time.
Standard TWOV rules require passengers to "remain in the transit area (airside) or on the aircraft". So, unless KSA makes an exception to this (which I doubt), all you'd see would be the airside areas in two airports, not just one...
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Old May 23, 12, 9:10 am
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Originally Posted by KQ321 View Post
Standard TWOV rules require passengers to "remain in the transit area (airside) or on the aircraft". So, unless KSA makes an exception to this (which I doubt), all you'd see would be the airside areas in two airports, not just one...
Yeah but if one includes a domestic segment and the entire itinerary is on SV then one will have to clear immigration to get the domestic flight and thus get out in the open. Per the rules above one does not need a visa for this right?

I understand your point if one is going JFK-RUH-BOM. But how about JFK-RUH-DMM-BOM?
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Old May 23, 12, 9:51 am
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This would help gain miles for those using the RGN-JED fare.
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Old May 23, 12, 9:58 am
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
Yeah but if one includes a domestic segment and the entire itinerary is on SV then one will have to clear immigration to get the domestic flight and thus get out in the open. Per the rules above one does not need a visa for this right?

I understand your point if one is going JFK-RUH-BOM. But how about JFK-RUH-DMM-BOM?
Hmmmm. In some countries, I would agree with your analysis.

I've never transited in KSA, so I can't really comment about the situation there. However, from what I've heard about KSA, I suspect the authorities would keep transit pax corralled up airside, rather than allowing people without visas to roam around landside.

Perhaps someone with direct experience can confirm?
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