Thursday, May 21, 2020

Life in Saudi Arabia

Following links are broad categories. Just click on the required category to read about articles published under it.



Jawazat & MOI Related
Saudi Labor Law
Other Saudi Laws
Driving in KSA
Social Issues in Saudi Arabia
Latest News
Travelling from Saudi Arabia

Places to Visit

Technological Information
·         Automated Teller Machine (ATM)
·         Facebook
·         Mobile Phones
·         Twitter
·         Whatsapp

General Information

Saturday, October 26, 2019

Need Steve’s Advice on any matter?

I strongly recommend you to look for the answer to your question on this blog. You can always use the search box given below.

However, if you are unable to find the answer, we are always here to help you. But keep in mind, it is a paid service.

You need to pay $5 to the following PayPal account and send an email to me with your question along with the payment proof.

I will try to answer your query as soon as possible. If I am not able to answer it, I will return back your money to the same PayPal account used for the payment.

In case you don't have a Paypal account, you can buy a Zain card worth SR 20, scratch it and send it to me. 

Note: We don't answer your questions asked in any manner other than what has been described above. Any question in the comments below will be subsequently deleted.

Email address to send your query:

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A man picking up the packet full of cash, loses his own SR 715,000

Heard of bag snatching, mobile robbery at roads? People losing their valuables at hands of robbers? Well yes, street crimes do prevail. People do face incidence where a person or gang show up with weapons and take away their cash, jewelry, mobiles or their other valuable items.  As such theft and robbery cases are common, people do take precautionary steps while holding handsome amount of money or other expensive items. For instance if one is carrying liquid cash or having valuable items with them, they avoid talking to strangers, take up a route which is likely to be safe and there is a feeling where every person looks suspicious. One remains alert and tries to be extra careful.

But the incident that took place in Dubai at Naif road is unique of its kind. An organization had to fulfill its business deal with a Jewelry company by delivering Dh 700,000 to it. So the organization appointed its Nepali salesman to drop off the cash at the Jewelry Company at two o’clock in afternoon. The 40 years old salesman had taken along the money in a suitcase. While he was going on foot, he saw a packet full of dollars on the side of the road. His eyes still on the packet, he saw a man picking it up and signaling him to follow him so that they could divide that money.  The salesman, notwithstanding that a trap was being set for him, followed the man into the alley along with his suitcase.

As he reached the deserted alley, another man approached and told them he wanted to search them as he has lost his money. The man opened up his bag. The salesman out of goodwill did the same and opened his suitcase.  Well that’s what they wanted to know that what the man was carrying. They beat him up and ran away with the money. According to the salesman, he was punched very badly in the face which made him fell onto the ground, when he became conscious he found out that the two man had ran away with Dh 700,000.

The police lieutenant has confirmed that the salesman had been beaten up in the alley by two men, as per the CCTV footage. The suspect that provided bait to the salesman has been identified as an Uzbek national. The police’s investigation reveals that the suspects were driving a car which belongs to a car renting organization. The police have taken into custody the Uzbek car rental office manager. He is accused of providing the gang with the car without receiving necessary documents.

One of the car rental employee told that they received a call, asking them to pick up that car from Sharjah. Another accused was also arrested later from Sharjah.  The trail will continue in April and two other Uzbek are accused of holding shares of stolen cash. Well, hopefully the cash will be recovered by the police and hopefully people will learn not to fall for baits!

Source: Khaleej Times

Latest News - Fraud Cases in Saudi Arabia
  1. A gang stealing Sand worth SR 286 million a month caught in Dammam
  2. SR 1,200 million transferred to a Saudi Resident account, what happened after that?
  3. A Saudi man who defrauded with 60 people worth SR 120 million finally arrested
  4. Customers of XXXX Bank are robbed today with several online deductions
  5. Beware of Online Begging Frauds – How does it work in Saudi Arabia?

Saudi Woman is the first swimmer to cross Dubai Creek – Dubai Water Canal

There was a belief that women can only manage homes, cook food and take care of children. But that is certainly not true. I mean women can do these things very well, but not only these things. Given the opportunity, women can do wonders. When I say wonders, I meant it!  Swimming for nine hours and ten minutes, covering about 24km: a difficult task and indeed a wonder! Yet done by a female! This record has been set by Dr. Mariam Saleh Binladen. She is a Saudi female who have set a record of being the first swimmer ever to cross Dubai Creek and the Dubai Water Canal.  This path is not a simple one; the entrance of canal welcomes one with strong and striking currents while the whole path is full of obstacles and challenges. Recommended: Saudi Female Student invents a lifesaving Swimsuit

This task indeed is a physically challenging and requires a lot of strength and energy.  She has expressed appreciation and acknowledgment towards the crown prince of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum. He is also the President of the Dubai Sports Council (DSC). Dr. Mariam has also extended her appreciations for her team who made all efforts to make this event a reality.  Dr. Mariam is a dentist by profession and yet a great philanthropist. She underwent this extremely difficult task for a humanitarian cause. Dr. Mariam wanted to express empathy towards the Syrian refugees. This is an effort made to create awareness about the Syrian orphans who are refugees: they have lost their families, home, and their childhood; they have been abandoned by their own country and are now seeking shelter in different nations. They need support. Also Read: Hana Jamal Alooni: Saudi Arabia’s first female Sports Reporter

By breaking the women-oriented stereotypes Dr. Mariam also wanted to motivate the Saudi females to furnish their talent and enter the field of sports. If she as a female can do such a troublesome exercise, then why can’t any other Saudi female? If she can swim along a challenging path by practicing hardly a month, then why can’t other Saudi females set an example of their strength? Saudi females are talented and they must show their talent to the world. However, this is not the first time Dr. Mariam has made the nation proud. Also Read: Rania Nashar, the first female CEO of any Saudi Commercial Bank

In 2015 she was declared as first ever Saudi women to have successfully completed the swimming challenge from Europe to Asia under Hellespont open water endurance swim held in Turkey. This was her humanitarian movement to support Syrian orphans who are rendered homeless. Also in 2016, she was able to break further two records by participating in swimming contests held in the United Kingdom.

The honor of being the first female to swim along 101 miles long river Thames and the first Saudi female to finish the assisted swim across the English Channel have been crowned on her.  Working with UNHCR and other humanity supporting organizations, the ambitious lady is motivated to further work for supporting the Syrian orphan refugees.  

Source: Saudi Gazette

Saudi Heroes
  1. Moaza al Matrooshi becomes first woman to delivery baby with Ovary Frozen in the Childhood
  2. Kariman Abuljadayel: The first Saudi woman to compete in the 100 meters
  3. Maisah Sobaihi: First Saudi to perform monodrama worldwide
  4. First Saudi Female Pilot is high in ambitions to Fly Airliners
  5. Raha Mouharrak, first Saudi Woman to climb Mount Everest

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

A Saudi Prisoner writes the entire Holy Quran by hand in just 4 months

Philanthropists around the world are readily devoting their time for humanitarian cause. They are promoting the welfare of the society through different modes: for instance, some would donate money, while other involve in activities which would benefit the humans. Sometimes these philanthropists come with unique ideas to support people’s welfare that is amazing. These ideas are revolutionary for enhancing and nourishing quality of human life. Jotted down is a remarkable effort of a Saudi philanthropist. 

An anonymous philanthropist visited many of the prisons in the kingdom and some of Gulf countries and motivated the prisoners to get involved in a contest. The contest was named as “By my hand, I wrote the Qur’an”. The participants were to be given three years to write the holy book, Quran, by hand. In order to evoke their interest, they had been promised a reward for it. The unidentified competition holder reveals that by means of this contest he wanted to make the prisoners memorize the Holy Quran completely. However, the inmate of Dhahban prison, Jeddah has could write all the Quran in just four months. He was, in fact, able to write it all in just three months. It took him a month punctuate all the verses and allocating numbers to them. His handwritten Quran is completely enumerated and punctuated.

It is now sent to the concerned authorities for final checking. This very winner also claims to have could learn Quran by heart through this competition. He had learned the first 20 chapters already and could learn the remaining 10 while writing them down. The winner says that the task seemed to be difficult at first, and he hesitated to become a part of it. But once he got involved in it, the task became easier. With every passing day, it became easier for him to jot down every single verse. This is indeed a great effort by the unknown humanity lover.

When a crime has taken place, punishment is important. It is a penalty for that certain crime. But to ensure that the person does not get involve in further crimes, it is important to nourish their minds with positive thoughts. It is important to teach them to be good human beings, to benefit the society rather than causing the harm.  It is important to look after the criminals in prison so that when they come out they become good human beings rather than being more dangerous criminals.

The time spent in prison shall be availed for their reconciliation rather than providing them with the opportunity to plan bigger crimes. And giving them this opportunity to go through every verse, to strengthen their faith is the best idea. The person closer to God is a person farther away from crimes. A person having strong faith is a person beneficial for a society. Islam is a religion of peace; Quran will surely help them to be peace lovers.       

Source: Saudi Gazette

Latest Islamic News
  1. Islam will be the most popular religion by the year 2070
  2. Isaac Bannour walks from France to Makkah, 7,250Km, 17 countries, in 6 months
  3. A Bride denied entry to the Masjid al Haram Makkah for wearing wedding dress
  4. 4 Mosques which Non-Muslims are allowed to visit in Saudi Arabia
  5. The Plazas around the Haram, Makkah divided into 6 zones

Is New Dependent Fee applicable on less than 18 Years old dependents?

The budget 2017 is inclusive of measures that will enable the economy to achieve a long-term financial balance. Therefore, the Saudi Arabia’s 2017 budget has incorporated tough measures which will facilitate a balanced growth of the economy. One of the measures taken is to levy a dependent fee on expats living in the Kingdom. The budget 2017 is very comprehensive, nevertheless, new features have become difficult to be understood. The expats are facing a lot of confusion related to the Dependent fees. This is a new concept, never observed before in the Kingdom. Therefore, people are curious and confused about the new fee announced in the budget for the fiscal year 2017. Is New Dependent Fee applicable on less than 18 Years old dependents? Recommended: New Dependent’s Fee in Saudi Arabia? How to avoid it for the year 2017?

So here you will be entertained with the details of dependent fees and hopefully, your confusions will be cleared. The dependent fee will be introduced into the economic system from July 2017. The Jawazat shall collect this fee with the Iqama renewal.  So, from July onwards, the expats must pay SR 1200 per dependent at the time of Iqama Renewal. If you have two dependents, you must pay SR 2,400 per annum. Many people have confusion and they believe that the fee will not be levied to dependents of expatriates who are less than 18 years old. They believe that the fee is only applicable to those dependents who are more than 18 years old. Many people think that dependent is not defined by Saudi Authorities so it is too early to say anything in this regard. Recommended: Who will pay the newly imposed dependent’s fee as per Law? Employer?

We consider it our responsibility to enlighten our readers about this subject. In our opinion, dependent is someone who has been considered as dependent by the Ministry of Interior. If you login to your MOI account, you will find all your children and your wife under the dependents category. If you have your parents living in Saudi Arabia under your sponsorship, you will find them as Sponsorees in your account.

Don’t get confused that if they are less than 18 years of age or more than 18 years, you are not exempted from paying the dependent fees.  One should also know that Iqama of a child expires after he crosses the age of 18. It means that Iqama cannot be renewed after a child becomes more than 18 years old: it can be if he/she is a student or in a case of any other genuine reason. But if iqama is renewed on basis of studies, it shall expire when the child turns 25. Recommended: Procedure to get Iqama for Dependents after 18 Years

The dependents fee shall increase to SR 2,400 per dependents from July 2018, SR 3,600 per dependent from July 2019 and SR 4,800 per dependent from July 2020. This is one of the reasons many expatriates are sending their families back to their home. It will also increase the foreign remittance from Saudi Arabia.

Latest News: Jawazat Related
  1. Umrah Visa to be extended up to 3 months – Shoura Council to decide
  2. No More Expiry Date on Iqama – Recent Development
  3. Cancellation of SR 100 Dependent’s Fee, 2% Increase in Iqama Fee?
  4. What is the Reality behind Notices regarding expats monthly fee?
  5. No Work Permit or Iqama Renewal without Ijar Registration – The Minister’s Council

Monday, March 27, 2017

Pay 20% Tax, start your business and be your own Kafeel – Proposal Underway

A Saudi daily newspaper published the report that the government of Saudi Arabia is currently considering to take effective steps to provide expatriates with an opportunity to practice free trade investment, basically against 20% annual income tax. The purpose of taking this action is to provide expatriates with a platform where they can invest openly. The Saudi concerned authorities are effectively studying and conducting reports to consider procedures for imposing a tax. Two options are going to be available for tax.

One would be on the profit reported in the financial statements which needs to be provided by an expat in terms of revenue, whereas, the second type of tax will work on approximated profits for limited professions. This second system is hard as verification of such estimated profits is difficult. The reason as for why this free trade investment option is being considered is that the transaction ratios were much limited to Saudis previously which gave rise to the trend of tasattur.  Tasattur is the illegal method by which expats monitor their businesses in the name of Saudis against a certain fee and because of this, the economy of Saudi Arabia is suffering a great loss which accounts for around billions of riyals. According to the concerned sources, the new tax procedure will authorize the expatriates as investors in their self-employed professions, where there is no need of any Kafeel (sponsor).

This would be done by obtaining the required license which enables expatriates to invest in any free trade zone such as workshops, groceries, catering, contracting and many others.  The news is confirmed by the statement delivered by Minister of Commerce and Investment, Majed Al-Qasabi. Majed Al-Qasabi stated that the concerned ministry is taking all possible steps to put an end to the Tasattur practice in Saudi Arabia which will also provide a road to the expatriates through which they can practice trade openly. The expats do not need to hide anymore behind Saudis to practice the trade.

He further added that the expatriates would be fully permitted to do their own commercial business. The Minister of commerce, Majed Al-Qasabi also stated that Minister of Commerce and Investment has developed a study in which the focus is to sort out the causes and solutions for the commercial cover-up. Besides this, the Minister called for the clearance of commercial cover-up which is definitely to improve the economy of Saudi Arabia and also provide new jobs for Saudis.  An official informed source at the General Authority for medium and small Enterprises quoted that the preparation to combat tasattur is almost complete.

There is complete cooperation with the concerned authorities to mention the rules and regulations which would give a guarantee about the rights of the investor for both Saudis and non-Saudis. Around 200,000 cases of tasattur are highlighted in Saudi Arabia over the past few years which include 86,000 in the contract and 84 in retail sectors. However last year, the ministry considered and forwarded about 450 tasattur cases to the Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution.   

Source: Saudi Gazette

Latest News: Jawazat Related
  1. Umrah Visa to be extended up to 3 months – Shoura Council to decide
  2. No More Expiry Date on Iqama – Recent Development
  3. Cancellation of SR 100 Dependent’s Fee, 2% Increase in Iqama Fee?
  4. What is the Reality behind Notices regarding expats monthly fee?
  5. No Work Permit or Iqama Renewal without Ijar Registration – The Minister’s Council

750 million people (60.4%) in India live without Toilets – An Ugly Reality

Recently, a new research statistics is recorded in the form of a report which is named as “It’s No Joke – State of the World’s Toilets”, published by WaterAid. The report by WaterAid revealed the most important global fact which is unavoidable at any cost. The report indicated, after doing a sampling of around 774 million people in India, that they are devoid of the toilet facility in their homes. They have to make a queue line for using toilets which would definitely stretch from Earth towards the moon and beyond.  Everyone wants to avail the facility of a decent toilet but unfortunately, this facility is not within easy reach for everyone globally. It is a basic and fundamental right of a human.

There are several people globally who do not have access to toilets. 2.3 billion People in the world are those who are living without a toilet.  According to a research study which is released in the event of World Toilet Day conducted by United nation worldwide, the second most populous nation of the world possess 60.4 percent people who pass their lives without private toilets which leave a great question mark for a developed country. Research study claimed that in India more than half of the population fails to avail the household toilet facility which is really a shocking factor. Having safe and private toilet is one of the basic needs of Indians. Although Economy graph of India is boosting rapidly, India holds a great position worldwide, producing a large figure of Engineers and doctors.

Since 1990, an improvement is noticed which is about 22.8 percent. Due to this improved percentage, India is ranked on the seventh number out of eight south Asian countries. The report further stated that Nepal is considered as the most improved among the South Asian countries and improvement is followed by Pakistan and Bhutan.  Due to unsafe and lack of private toilet facility in India, almost 40 percent of children lives and their futures are affected.

However, India also holds a high maternal and newborn mortality rate which is directly linked to Sepsis. Sepsis is one of the rare and severe complicated infections. If this infection is not treated on time, it can possibly lead to various organs failure and sometimes ends up in death.   The research report’s basic purpose is to highlight the most important impact on the health of those 60.4 percent Indians. This is a major health issue and serious matter. More than 140,000 children, younger than five years of age, die annually in India due to diarrhea. To promote awareness and educate people about the importance of clean and private toilets, water aid decided to celebrate World Toilet Day every year globally on 19th November. 

Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, considered the sanitation problem as the top most political priority and took action last year by launching a program named as Swachh Bharat which means Clean India Mission. The purpose of this mission was to ensure a toilet for every household till 2019 and create awareness by educating people about the health and economic benefits of the proper sanitation system.

Poor People of Saudi Arabia
  1. 41 million people in Pakistan live without Toilets – A dirty Truth
  2. Miserable Condition of Public Toilets in Saudi Arabia
  3. Etiquettes of using Toilets in Saudi Arabia
  4. A Saudi can't even buy 1 square meter land with his Average Salary
  5. Why do Street Cleaners beg for money in Saudi Arabia?

Sunday, March 26, 2017

A Saudi can't even buy 1 square meter land with his Average Salary

The value of a land is about SR 5,000 per square meter while the normal pay scale of a Saudi resident in a private sector is SR 4,967 per month which is less than the price of a land per square meter. This is according to the official statistics of the Ministries of Justice and Labor and Social development. According to a number of real estate experts, an average monthly pay should be more than SR 10,000 for a Saudi resident to own a house. At Jeddah Chamber of Commerce, the member of the real land estimation committee, Abdullah Al-Ahmari, said that a Saudi would be able to possess a house when his pay would range between SR 15, 000 to SR 20,000 per month.

But he said that about 60 percent of the Saudis are getting wages which are not more than SR 10,000 per month.  The land area of Saudi Arabia is around 2,150,000 km². It is physically the fifth biggest country in Asia and second biggest country in the Arab world after Algeria. According to the experts, the price of land in some areas of the Kingdom is less than the predicted price as decided by the two ministries. The experts disagree with the predicted price of a square meter of land for the construction of apartments and say that it is wrongly estimated. Another member of Jeddah Chamber of Commerce committee, Abdullah Al-Balawi, believes that Saudis can build their own houses easily with SR 10,000 or more wages per month. They can take loans and Real Estate Development Funds.

These incentives can help Saudis in building their own homes. By keeping in mind the information provided by the two ministries, Ghada Al-Idrisi, a female member of Chamber of Commerce committee, said that it is not easy to possess personal house. It would take 70 to 100 years for a Saudi resident to have his own home. To encourage real land growth, the government is taking measures. They have introduced mortgage process, code system of new buildings and white land taxes.

The government has planned to take effective steps which are the part of the National Transformation Plan 2020 and Vision 2030, which will help the Saudi resident to own a house. ‘Sakani’, which is a program started by the Ministry of Housing this year, has the agenda to give 120,000 unit houses to citizens. Their plan is to help citizens financially and give 280,000 units houses in total. They will give 75,000 unit houses more which are in a position of construction and 85,000 financial help from different banks and the Real Land Development.

This new plan is very encouraging and will boost up the real land growth. The new techniques and technology will be helpful in reducing the time from 11 years to 5 years for the housing scheme. The new techniques and technology are helpful in the construction of housing unit and it will help and provide more financial benefits to several Saudi citizens.

Source: Saudi Gazette

Poor People of Saudi Arabia
  1. Average Salary of 600 Job Professions in Saudi Arabia
  2. Minimum Wages for Saudis and Expats in Saudi Arabia
  3. Why do Street Cleaners beg for money in Saudi Arabia?
  4. A Street Cleaner who earns SR 700 per month gifted with Gold Sets, Iphone 7, Flight Tickets
  5. The miseries and problems of Unpaid Workers in Saudi Arabia

Two Women Only Parks in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

The World Economic Forum’s Gender Report 2015 positioned Saudi Arabia 134th out of 145 countries for gender equality. In Saudi Arabia, lady’s gyms aren’t commonly offered but now the government is working on different schemes and ideas to enhance fitness concept in the country. On Tuesday, Makkah news reported that in Jeddah city, the legal authorities are working on finishing two parks in the city. These parks are women restricted open parks. Updates are provided by well-informed sources that these two public parks will be opened in a few months’ time. One park will be opened near the Falak (astronomical) square while the other park will be opened in South Jeddah at Prince Fawaz housing district.

They also said that these parks will be completely supervised by the city legal authorities. These parks are part of the city’s upcoming scheme to give free and secure areas for females where they can spend their spare time. The main aim of this development is to open work-out centers in every region of the country. At present, the authorities are working on 10 walkways in different areas of the city to build the habit of walking. The two new parks will have entertainment area and walking tracks.  The scheme is to encourage women to walk as the Kingdom has a level of fitness, according to the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. The survey has been conducted in which 33.5 percent of women interviewed are categorized as obese while almost half of women are physically unfit.

There are many public parks in the different areas of the city but these parks are for both men and women. In Saudi Arabia, public places such as restaurants, banks, parks and other places are more separated. Women are required to go in and come out through special doors or sometimes men and women visit these places at different hours.  Wives, daughters, and sisters are not allowed to interact and mix with nonmahram or nonrelative. Saudi houses are constructed with 2 entrances: one for male and another for females. 

In East Jeddah in Al-Samir area, there is 1.5 km long and 12-meter wide walkway and in North Jeddah in Al-Shafa area walkway is 1.9 km long and 5 meters wide. In Al-Nakheel, there is a walkway to 1.5 km long and 32 meters wide and in Prince Fawaz housing area there is a walkway of 4.5 km long and 10 meters.

Hopefully, these schemes will help authorities in motivating Saudi women to live and enjoy improved and healthy daily life. This is also a part of Vision 2030 plan. The plan is to diminish Saudi dependency on oil and rely on other substitutes of an economy and the growth of service sectors such as health, education, transportation, communication, exercise, tourism and much more.

Source: Saudi Gazette

Entertainment in Saudi Arabia
  1. Dancing Fountains in Al Rudaf Park, Taif Saudi Arabia
  2. A Tour to “The World Sights Park” in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  3. Al Shallal Theme Park Jeddah - an Oasis in Desert
  4. Saudi Government opens special Park for Disabled Residents in Jeddah
  5. 7 beautiful family parks in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia


Follow us in Google+