Saudi Arabia introduces compulsory health insurance for tourists

Illustration of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

The Council of Cooperative Health Insurance (CCHI) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has revealed details of the compulsory health policy

The maximum cover available under the plan, which covers medical tests, emergency treatment, hospitalisation, childbirth, premature birth treatment, injury in a traffic accident, emergency dialysis, medical evacuation both within and outside of Saudi Arabia, and various ancillary costs relating to hospital treatment, is SAR100,000 (US$26,666). Emergency dental treatment, painkillers, antibiotics, pregnancy expenses, repatriation and travel costs for one person accompanying the mortal remains of a relative are also covered, to various amounts.

The policy will be made available for purchase at the same time that applications for tourist visas are made; such visas can either be obtained online or when the tourist in question arrives in Saudi Arabia. For the initial rollout of the policy, citizens from 49 countries will be able to access the service.

The compulsory insurance initiative is part of Saudi Arabia’s overall tourism strategy, through which it hopes to increase tourist arrivals from 41 million at present to over 100 million by 2030.