Arab News, Sunday, Jan 08, 2023 | Jamadi Al Thani 15, 1444
Airbnb-style tourism on its way to Saudi Arabia after key law change
Saudi residents will be able to rent out rooms to tourists after a drastic
change to the law which paves the way for Airbnb-style businesses.
The new bylaw — which was approved by the Minister
of Tourism Ahmed Al-Khateeb — will allow a maximum of three permits issued per
These permits can last from one to three years.
The latest regulations ensure that the tourism
sector keeps up with the renaissance that Saudi Arabia is undergoing and mirror
the ministry’s efforts to achieve the goals of the development strategy for
tourism in the Kingdom.
Al-Khateeb described the new laws as “a promising
step toward a prosperous tourism future” in a tweet.
“These regulations would allow the ministry to
strengthen cooperation with the private sector, and to offer job opportunities
for the national competencies in the tourism sector,” Al-Khateeb said
In order to apply for a permit, the ministry has
outlined several conditions which have to be met by the applicant.
The residence should be part of a property
designated to either residential or agricultural use, and applicants must be
They should also provide an electronic title deed
or an electronic lease contract proving the usufruct right of the property
subject of the permit.
If the property is jointly owned, all those with a
say must agree to the application.
The regulations also allow for flexibility in
financial payments as per the facility’s capabilities.
Prior to the tourist’s entry, facilities should
comply with its cleanliness and maintenance preparations.
In December, the Kingdom initiated 10 new policies
aimed at expanding the tourism sector and protecting tourists, according to the
Minister of Tourism Ahmed Al-Khateeb.
The issued policies included laws for the sector,
as well as regulations for quality control and monitoring of services.