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Special Iqama ProcessObtaining Special Iqama for Saudi Arabia

Obtaining Special Iqama for Saudi Arabia

Premium Residency in Saudi Arabia

Special Iqama or premium residency allows foreigners and their family members to reside and engage in business activities in the Kingdom with special privileges.

In addition to several other benefits, Premium Residence holders can invest in the Kingdom, buy private property for residential, commercial, and industrial purposes, and purchase property rights in ​​Mecca and Madina where property ownership is banned for foreigners.

You can apply for the Special Iqama via the electronic application system in three simple steps.

Requirements for Special Iqama Application

  • The applicant must be over 21 years of age.
  • The applicant must submit a valid passport.
  • A clean bill of health issued in the last 6 months that shows the applicant doesn’t have a contagious disease.
  • Financial statements that prove the applicant's financial solvency.
  • A certificate of no criminal record/good conduct that proves the applicant has no criminal history.
  • Proof of residence documents from the country of application. A copy of your residence visa if you’re applying from the Kingdom.
  • Applicants may have to provide additional documents depending on their residence status at the time of application.

Special Iqama Types and Benefits

There are 2 types of Special Iqama (Special Residency Visa):

  • Permanent residency (one-time fee of SR 800,000)

Permanent special Iqama grants the applicant (and his/her spouse and children under the age of 21) premium residency in the Kingdom for an unlimited period of time. The applicant pays a

one-time fee of 800,000 Saudi riyals.

  • Renewable residency (an annual fee of SR 100,000)

Renewable special Iqama grants foreigners (and their eligible family members including their spouses and children under the age of 21) a one-year premium residency in the Kingdom. Premium residency can be renewed annually by paying 100,000 Saudi riyals. Applicants may receive a 2% fee reduction for consecutive residency renewals.

Special Iqama Features and Benefits

  • Real estate ownership for residential and business purposes
  • Unrestricted (and transferable) property rights in Mecca and Medina for up to 99 years for real estate utilization
  • Visit visas for extended family.
  • The right to engage in business activities, and invest in the Kingdom’s Capital Market in accordance with relevant laws and regulations.
  • The ability to work in the private sector and freely move between jobs (extends to applicable family members).
  • The right to own private transportation vehicles in the Kingdom.
  • Hire and recruit domestic workers.
  • Freely enter and exit the Kingdom at will.
  • Use airport lanes and other entry-exit lanes designated for Saudi nationals.
  • Exemption from residency fees for the holder and their immediate family including spouse and children under the age of 21.

Step 1: Register the applicant in the Special Iqama portal

The portal allows foreigners to apply for special residency without visiting physical offices. Register for the electronic service by entering all the relevant information including ID and passport details.


Step 2: Log in on the portal

Log in on the portal and read the instructions before filling out the residency application form


Step 3: Submit your application for processing

Submit your application for processing and wait for approval. The approval process may take up to 4 months.

Once you receive approval, Iqama will be issued and you can enjoy the benefits of special residency in the Kingdom.

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