Sorry for keeping you awaited (only if you have been visiting the blog – the stats shows otherwise). The list of things that you need to pack up with you could be infinite but following are a few which you should consider.
Check from the friends in the Kingdom about the medicines that you are using if these are available here or not? You can also check that from the Pharmaceutical company as well if they have distribution to the Saudi Arabia or not – as none of the multinational pharmaceuticals have production facilities in Saudi Arabia (courtesy “Very Liberal” Saudi policy for foreign investment) – most of them have the distribution setups here – so you better check that.
As such there is no need of bringing in the prescription with the medicines if you are bringing any to the Kingdom – except might be required for the Narcotics / Hypnotics – Valium etc.
- Do NOT bring any food that contains poppy seeds – yes, not only poppy products but even the harmless poppy seeds which we often gets on donuts etc. are forbidden in the Kingdom – People of Asian Sub-continent use poppy seed to spice their meals – they are WARNED that do not even think of bringing Khaskhash to the Kingdom.
- Bring some extra pair of shoes if you are going to work in Riyadh/Central Province – Shoes here generally are not that good and those which are acceptable are very highly overpriced – except the Clarks but they have very limited variety.
- Bring in a lots of shirts/trousers/suits to meet your needs (if you do need to wear formal) – otherwise Jeans/T-Shirts would be sufficient if you are working into production environment.
- Try to avoid bringing Software CD(s) as they might suspect them as movies and you might have to wait at the airport for them to go through the CD(s) one by one – similarly same goes for the movies, try not to bring them with you in DVD covers – if you really want to bring some movies – better idea would be to throw away the covers and bring them loose – the best way to bring movies is to copy them on to an external hard drive and then you should be safe (not 100%).
- No Alcohol in any form
- No Drugs – Kingdom has the death penalty for the Drug Traffickers
- Summers are extremely HOT & winters are Hot in day but bone freezing in nights – so you might consider bringing Sun Glasses with UV Protection.
- Traffic Radar Detector could be worth considering if you are fond of driving at high speeds so that you can save yourself from “Mukhaalfaas”/Challans/Tickets.
- If you are a female – try to find an abaya from your local market – otherwise ask someone in kingdom to arrange one for you so that you can wear it when you come out of the airport/plane. Otherwise a shawl that could cover whole of your body (and preferably face) would do the trick (just for the time being).
- Your Driving License – International Driving License would also be acceptable for the period of 1 to 2 months (only if you are on a visit visa or after getting Iqama (Residential Permit) – Ladies!, you are not, not, not allowed to drive in the Kingdom, hence there would probably be no use of bringing your License.
- O yes – do bring your attested Degree from foreign ministry of your country, Saudi Cultural Center (if applicable) & Saudi Embassy in your country – you marriage certificate (attested) one – these are the minimum required things that you need to bring with you, in case you want to bring your family here.
- 12 Passport Size Pictures (white background) – so that you do not have to go around for getting photographed
That’s about it for the time being – would keep on adding things as and when I get some time.