Asharq Alawsat reports that the process of issuing visas to Saudi Arabs wishing to visit the US has been improving. Visa processing now takes about a week, with 95% of visa applicants being approved, the new US Consul-General in Dhahran says. The Consulate there is issuing around 100 visas per week, while the entire US Mission to Saudi Arabia issued 110K visas last year.

I’m pleased to learn of the new Consul-General. Joey Hood was a junior officer when I was in Riyadh. He was always fun to work with and exceptionally conscientious in his job. I’m glad to see that good deeds do get rewarded!

Saudi Arabia: US Visa procedure improves
Ali al-Qattan

Dhahran, Asharq Al-Awsat – The US Consulate in Dhahran in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province has revealed that it issues approximately 100 visas per day to Saudi nationals wishing to visit America, whether for study, medical treatment, business or tourism. It added that it had issued a total of 21,000 visas last year, including 6,000 visas to Saudi students or their family members.

Dhahran Consulate officials, speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat, revealed that the consulate aims to keep up this rate of visa issuance, adding that the US consulate had taken action to speed up visa applications, ensuring that this does not exceed one week. The officials added that the Dhahran Consulate is also utilizing high-speed courier services to dispatch visas to their applicants as soon as possible and not interfere in their travel plans. This comes after Saudi visa applicants have complained about stringent post-9/11 visa procedures.

The Dhahran Consulate also confirmed that the US diplomatic mission in Saudi Arabia had issued more than 110,000 visas last year adding that more than 95 percent of visa applications were granted. As for the remaining 5 percent, these were mostly rejected due to a lack of documentation.

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