Saudi Arabia Guide

Saudi Arabia Guide

Country data

Location: Middle East

Time zone: CET + 2 (during summer time: CET + 1)

Total area: 2,149,690 km²

Land area: 2,149,690 km²

Water area: 0 km²

Length of the state border: 4,431 km

Bordering countries:
Iraq: 814 km
Yemen: 1,458 km
Jordan: 744 km
Qatar: 60 km
Kuwait: 222 km
Oman: 676 km
United Arab Emirates: 457 km

Coastline: 2,640 km

Capital: Riyadh

Provinces: 13
Al Bahah, Al Hudud ash Shamaliyah, Al Jawf, Al Madinah, Al Qasim, Ar Riyad, Ash Sharqiyah, Asir, Ha’il, Jizan, Makkah, Najran, Tabuk

Electric current: 110, 220 V / 60 Hz

Telephone code: 00 966 (Source: Allcitycodes)

Highest point: Jabal Sawda 3,133 m

Population

Population: approx. 27.3 million residents (Countryaah, 2021)

Population growth: 1.5% per year

Population density (residents per km²): 13

Life expectancy: 73 (male), 77 (female)

Official language: Arabic

Religions: 100% Muslim

Climate

Saudi Arabia

Inland:

  • dry hot desert climate
  • in summer over 40 ° C during the day and at least 25 ° C at night
  • in winter around 25 ° C during the day and 0 ° C at night
  • very low humidity
  • hardly any rainfall

Area along the Red Sea:

  • Temperature in summer between 22 ° C and 40 ° C
  • Temperature in winter between 15 ° C and 30 ° C
  • year-round high humidity
  • isolated cyclones in summer

Currency / finance

Currency unit: Saudi riyal (SAR)

Classification: 1 riyal = 20 qurush = 100 halala

ATMs: There are very few ATMs.

International credit cards: These are accepted by some large hotels and shops.

Regulations: Foreign and national currencies can be imported and exported in unlimited amounts.

A declaration is required from an equivalent value of 60,000 SAR.

The import of Israeli currency is prohibited.

Customs regulations

The following may be carried duty-free:

  • 600 cigarettes or 100 cigars or 500 g tobacco
  • small amounts of perfume

(Information applies to people aged 18 and over)

Tourists and people in transit can bring items of personal use with them duty-free.

There is an import ban for:

  • alcohol
  • Food containing pork
  • all kinds of pornographic articles

Many articles and objects are cleared when entering the country. However, if you do this again within 90 days, you can request repayment of the customs amount when you leave the country.

The customs controls are very precise and the regulations must be strictly observed.

Travel advice

Travel to the border area with Yemen and travel to Qatif district in the Eastern Province is not recommended.

Behavioral advice

There have been isolated attacks on tourists. You should therefore not wear money and jewelry in plain sight.

It is recommended to register at the embassy after entering the country. You should save your planned travel routes and stopover points there. This means that any consular assistance that may be required can be provided more quickly.

Economy

The second largest oil reserves on earth are in Saudi Arabia. The country has grown enormously rich through exports.

The service sector and the tourism industry are other important pillars of the economy.

Industries: building materials, chemistry, services, oil and gas extraction, tourism

Natural resources: iron ore, natural gas, precious oil, gold, copper

Land use:

  • Usable land: 2%
  • Grain cultivation: 0%
  • Pasture area: 56%
  • Forests: 1%
  • other: 41%

Plants

A large part of the country consists of desert areas with only isolated oases. Mainly dates and many different types of shrub and grass grow in these areas.

To stop the desert migration, several million trees have been planted in recent years. These now serve as a natural protective wall against the masses of sand.

Animals

Only a few large animals live on land. Most of the species are already extinct here because they have lost their green habitat to humans.

Many different, sometimes rare, species of fish still live in the Red Sea in particular.

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