What to Expect & FAQs

What to Expect & FAQs

For Your AlUla Visit

Although you will be among the first visitors in modern times to see the extraordinary heritage sites, beautiful wilderness, and epic landscapes, AlUla has been famous as a welcoming place for thousands of years.

The ancient Dadanites and the Nabataeans greeted pilgrims and those travelling historic routes, with hospitality and a safe place to stay along their journeys. That’s true of the people of AlUla today. Everyone you meet has a smile for you and wants to tell you a story or show you a special place.

 

Travel & Booking Your Trip

Are visas currently available?
Saudi Arabia will reopen its borders to international tourists from 1 August 2021.

Citizens from 49 countries are eligible for a tourism visa, which can be secured on the Visit Saudi website. For the most up to date information on entry requirements, especially from countries with new variant coronavirus, travellers should check with their carrier before booking.
 
What are the vaccination requirements to travel? to AlUla?

Saudi Arabia will reopen its borders to international tourists from 1 August 2021.

Tourism visa holders who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 will be able to enter the country from 1 August, 2021 without the need to quarantine. Travelers will need to provide evidence of a full course of one the four vaccines currently recognized: two doses of the Oxford/Astra Zeneca, Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccines or a single dose of the vaccine produced by Johnson and Johnson.

Travelers who have completed two doses of the Sinopharm or Sinovac vaccines will be accepted if they have received an additional dose of one of the four vaccines approved in the Kingdom.

Saudi Arabia has opened a web portal at https://muqeem.sa/#/vaccine-registration/home for visitors to register their vaccination status. The site is available in Arabic and English.

Travelers arriving in Saudi Arabia are also required to provide a negative PCR test taken no more than 72 hours before departure and an approved paper vaccination certificate, certified by the official health authorities in the issuing country.
 
What are the COVID-19 protocols put in place?
All visitors will be asked to observe the precautionary measures approved by the Ministry of Health which include wearing a mask in public and maintaining social distancing.
 
When will flights resume to AlUla?

Currently, Saudia Airlines and flynas are offering direct flights to AlUla.

Please visit Flying to AlUla page for the most up-to-date information.

How do I get to AlUla?
Check out the Getting to and Around AlUla page to learn about travel options. 

Saudia Air flies between AlUla and Riyadh, Jeddah and Damman. flynas files between AlUla and Riyadh. The nearest airport is Prince Abdul Majeed Bin Abdulaziz International Airport (ULH), which is located around 35 kilometers southeast of AlUla. Improvements to the AlUla airport including VIP lounges and other upgrades have recently been completed, as has a new visitor centre on the site.

AlUla is a 10-hour drive from Riyadh, 7 hour drive from Jeddah, 3 hours 20 minute drive from Medina and just over 3 hour drive from Tabuk Airport. It’s also only a 2.5 hour drive to the Red Sea which visitors can add on to their trip.
Where do I go to book my trip to AlUla?
We recommend you book your trip through one of our recommended travel partners. They will help create a custom package for your trip and complete the booking process for you. There are several options for booking your trip to AlUla available on the How to Book page.
 
How do I get around once I arrive in AlUla?
To get around visitors can use AlUla’s new taxi service, rent a car with or without a driver/guide, or hail a ride from Careem:
Other transport includes bus transportation from Winter Park to Hegra and Dadan, which can be included in your ticket.
VISITOR INFORMATION CENTRES
Information desks are located at Winter Park, Dadan /Jabal Ikmah, and Hegra.Information Desks are also located at Prince Abdul Majeed Bin Abdulaziz International Airport in AlUla as well as Shaden Resort and Sahary AlUla Resort.
What are the dinning options in AlUla?
There are several locations in AlUla to dine. Visit the Where to Eat page to see the variety of restaurants and cafes available. 
 

Booking Tours & Attraction Tickets

When will the heritage sites be open for visitors?
The heritage sites are currently open to visitors. To book tours and experiences visit the What To Do page. 
What activities are available in AlUla?
Several experiences are now available in AlUla. Visit the What to do Page for list tours and activities that are currently available.
Is there a discount on the tickets prices for AlUla locals and residents?
Yes, currently there is a discount for AlUla residents, please go to the visitor centre in Winter Park, show your ID and the discount will be provided to you.
How do you book other experiences in AlUla?
You can see the list of available experiences and attractions coming soon, on the What To Do  page.

Cancellation & Contact Information

Where can I leave feedback about my experience in AlUla?
We would love to hear about your experience in AlUla. Please take the survey and provide us with your feedback.
Where are the options to contact someone about travelling to AlUla?
Please reach out to a representative at +966 92 002 5003 9AM - 5PM 7 days a week and they will help answer any questions you may have about AlUla.
Whom do I contact if i need information about refunds?
You can call 8008803023 and a representative will assist you with changing or cancelling your booking.
How can I change or cancel a booking?
You can call 8008803023 and a representative will assist you with changing or cancelling your booking.
Where do I contact if i need to change my travel plans or if I miss a bus?
You can call 800 880 3023 and a representative will assist you with changing or cancelling your booking.

Accommodation Information

What are the accommodation options?
You can find the current and upcoming accommodation options on our Where to Stay page.

Shaden Resort offers comfortable accommodation in an incredible location, Sahary AlUla Resort has tradition Bedouin style rooms.

Ashar Resort offers one, two and three bedroom luxury tented style accommodation and is re-opening after renovations towards the end of 2021.

Habitas is a new eco-friendly luxury accommodation in the Ashar Valley and will be opening in 2021.

More accommodation including new and updated hotel rooms will be coming online throughout 2021.
Could you recommend places for camping?
Please reach out to a representative at +966 92 002 5003 9AM - 5PM 7 days a week and they will help answer any questions you may have about AlUla.

About AlUla

What events will be available? Is Winter at Tantora coming back?
Please check back on our events page for what will be an exciting events calendar that will strictly adhere to COVID-19 safe capacities.
LOCAL CUSTOMS
To be respectful of local customs we suggest both men and women dress modestly (with knees and elbows covered and avoiding tight-fitting clothing or those with profane languages or images). Women do not need to wear a head cover or abaya. Flat comfortable shoes are recommended when visiting various sites and experiences, since walking over varied terrain is often involved.

Proof of marriage is not required for couples to share a hotel room. However, public displays of affection are not consistent with local culture. Visitors should also avoid using profane language or gestures.

Female travellers aged 18 and older can travel independently (including driving and booking hotel rooms) on an eVisa without the need for male companions.

At prayer time, five times a day, music is turned off in public places and many shops close briefly.  Visitors should observe decorum during these times.

The sale, purchase and consumption of alcohol is illegal in Saudi Arabia. It is illegal to bring alcohol or drugs into the country.

Learn more about laws and etiquette in Saudi Arabia.
CURRENCY
The local currency is the Saudi Riyal (SAR). Some shops in town only accept cash, so it’s good to have some with you. There are ATMs in AlUla, but there is no currency exchange — plan to exchange money at Riyadh or Jeddah airports before your arrival.
WEATHER
Winter, typically October through April, is the best time to visit AlUla, with temperatures ranging from a pleasant 10–25 degrees Celsius (45–70 degrees Fahrenheit). It does get colder at night, so it is important to pack some warm clothing.

May through September is much hotter in this desert climate, with temperatures ranging from 20–35 degrees Celsius (60–95 degrees Fahrenheit).
LANGUAGE
The official language of Saudi Arabia is Arabic, but English is widely spoken in AlUla and around the country. When greeting locals a friendly greeting is “Marhaba” (“hello”) and “Salaam aleikum” (“peace be upon you”).

General Enquiries

What measures will AlUla be taking to ensure safety standards in line with the pandemic?
AlUla will be fully compliant with the Ministry of Health and World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) guidelines. Visit the Covid-19 information page for more information on the measures applied to ensure the safety of visitors at all times.
Hospitals and Healthcare Clinics
For minor illnesses, there’s Pure Clinic, Bateel Clinic, and Al-Busraji Clinic, all located in Al-Aziziya.

There are also many well-equipped pharmacies in AlUla city.

For emergencies, please go to Prince Abdulmohsen Hospital in AlUla or call the Saudi Red Crescent to request an ambulance 997.
Where does the admission price go?
The price of the tickets will be invested back into the development of AlUla as a visitor destination and will help fund key conservation, infrastructure, and hospitality and staffing programs to ensure the visitor experience is of international quality and standards.
Special Occasions and Holidays
Saudi Arabia has a handful of special occasions and holidays, so if you would like to visit during these periods, it is good to be prepared as most of them vary year to year due to the lunar calendar.

RAMADAN: During the holy month, Muslims are fasting from sunrise to sunset. You will find that most restaurants are closed during the day, however, hotels will be able to deliver room service. Takeaway and delivery services are also available at some restaurants. Most restaurants will open for iftar, the evening meal during which Muslims break their fast after Maghrib, or sunset prayer. Shops will be open only a few hours in the day and reopen late in the evenings. The start of Ramadan depends on the sighting of the new moon. In 2021, the month of Ramadan is likely to be over the period 13 April to 12 May 2021, however, dates may vary slightly.

EID AL FITR HOLIDAYS: To celebrate the end of Ramadan, Muslims celebrate the Eid Al Fitr. Eid Al Fitr in AlUla is a time for family and friends to come together and enjoy meals, celebrations, and many local activities. During the first three of five days, most businesses remain closed and restaurants may have shorter operating hours, but it is a wonderful time to be in AlUla and celebrate with the locals with many activities to do. In 2021, Eid Al Fitr is likely to fall on 12, 13, or 14 May, depending on the sighting of the moon.

EID AL ADHA HOLIDAYS: This is the second of the Eid celebrations in the Muslim calendar and is known as the greater Eid. A celebration a day after the completion of the Hajj pilgrimage, it falls on the tenth day in the final month, Dhu-al-Hijjah, of the Islamic Lunar Calendar. As the dates of Hajj also vary slightly from year to year, so does the actual day of Eid Al Adha. Normally, five days before and after Eid, most businesses remain closed and restaurants may have shorter operating hours. In 2021, Eid Al Adha is likely to fall on 20, 21, or 22 July, depending on the sighting of the moon.

SAUDI NATIONAL DAY HOLIDAY: This special day is to celebrate the unification of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and is held annually on 23 September. All businesses are closed for this national holiday, however, each year this day is celebrated with many special events and activities around the country and is a special time to visit Saudi Arabia.
GROCERY STORE
Bin Eid Market in AlUla city is available for a good variety of food, health and personal care products, and other necessities.
ELECTRONICS & WI-FI
For electronics, AlUla uses the same power plugs and sockets as in the United Kingdom (Type G).

Wi-Fi hotspots are located at specific locations and all hotels. However, for visitors coming from outside Saudi Arabia, we recommend purchasing a local mobile SIM card from a telecom provider at Riyadh or Jeddah airports.
How do I apply for a job in AlUla/heritage sites?
You can access the RCU site and look for job openings.

We are here to help you Experience AlUla in the best possible way. Have a question or enquiry? We would love to hear from you.

FAQ's and What to Expect

Learn about AlUla's culture and explore trip ideas and day-by-day itineraries of what to do.

FAQ's

Questions About AlUla

Have a general enquiry about visiting AlUla? Please call a representative at 920 025 003 9am - 5pm Sunday - Thursday.

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Booking Changes

Have your plans been cancelled or do you wish to go on a later date? Contact a representative at 800 880 3023 between 9am - 5pm 7 days a week to help make your changes.

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Give Us Your Feedback

In our efforts to continually improve and learn from guest feedback, we would appreciate your time to take our survey.

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As AlUla opens as a year-round destination, subscribe to our e-newsletter to be one of the first to know when we open our heritage sites, launch new experiences and announce special events.

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FIND OUT HOW TO GET TO & AROUND ALULA

Getting to AlUla by air or by car is simple, and once you’ve arrived, you have several options for exploring its endless wonders. Find out more about airports, rental cars and driving in Saudi Arabia.

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