Iqama, also known as a residence permit, has a significant impact on the lives of expatriates living in Saudi Arabia.
Firstly, the Iqama is necessary for expatriates to legally reside and work in the country. Without an Iqama, they cannot obtain a driver’s license, open a bank account, or access government services.
Secondly, the Iqama also acts as a form of identification, and expatriates are required to carry it with them at all times. It also contains important information such as the holder’s profession, employer, and legal status in the country.
Thirdly, the Iqama also plays a role in the sponsorship system, where the expatriate’s employer is responsible for their legal status in the country and must renew the Iqama annually. This system can limit the mobility and freedom of expatriates, as they are not able to change jobs or leave the country without the approval of their sponsor.
Lastly, the Iqama also affects the expatriates’ ability to bring their family members to Saudi Arabia, as they are required to sponsor them and ensure their legal status in the country.
Overall, the Iqama plays a crucial role in the lives of expatriates living in Saudi Arabia, affecting their legal status, mobility, and access to government services and benefits.
life of expatriates living in Saudi Arabia
The life of expatriates living in Saudi Arabia can be challenging at times, as they are living in a culture that is vastly different from their own.
Firstly, the strict social and religious customs in Saudi Arabia can be difficult for expatriates to adjust to, particularly for women who are required to adhere to a strict dress code and may face limitations on their mobility.
Secondly, the lack of freedom of expression and censorship can be challenging for expatriates, as they may be used to a more open and liberal society.
Thirdly, the hot and arid climate can be challenging for expatriates to adjust to, particularly for those from cooler climates.
Fourthly, the language barrier can be an issue for expatriates, as the official language of Saudi Arabia is Arabic and many locals may not speak English fluently.
Despite these challenges, many expatriates are able to adapt to life in Saudi Arabia and find it to be a rewarding experience, with many opportunities for professional growth and financial success. They also have access to a variety of social, cultural, and recreational activities, including shopping, dining, and entertainment. Many expatriates also find the sense of community among the expat population to be a positive aspect of living in Saudi Arabia, as they are able to connect with others who share similar experiences.