How long does it take to get the iqama?

Salaam/Hello,

My husband got a job at a university in al Khobar. We applied for the visas here in the US and they gave him his and rejected mine and our children. I guess the rules changed in 2018 and they no longer allow families to come until the iqama has been received in Saudi.

So my husband left, and now my children and I are here, waiting for him to get the iqama.

How long can I expect to wait? When we searched online we found different numbers from several weeks to 3 months. Since he arrived, he was told it will take 3 months.

This makes things very difficult for my children and I. Has anyone applied for the iqama in Saudi THIS MONTH? Were they given a wait time?

Thank you!

Thank you for your reply.

The reason I mentioned the month and year is because I was told that there were recent changes to the way things were done starting the new year.

I doubt they submitted the iqama because he didn't have the health check there yet. I don't know if this is something that they will schedule him or if it's something he needs to schedule on his own. (He had the one in the US though.)

What is the probation period? Is this something mandatory for employers to wait?
Should he push them to submit the application now?

Hi there.
I can’t help with any of your questions but perhaps you can give me a time line on how things went? Assuming everything has gone threw now and you and your children have finally made it there with your husband!
My husband just left for Saudi Arabia and will be applying for his Iqama as soon as possible. We were hoping for the whole process to be quick but I have also seen a lot of different answers. I am keeping my fingers crossed that my children and I can be back together with my husband soon!
Any info or guidance would be appreciated! :)

Hi Chelsea,
It's been 2 and a half months now and we still aren't there. At this point, even if he gets the iqama, we are just going to wait until the semester finishes (around the mid of May) until he would come back to get us. He went several times to the human resources office at the University to ask about the case and each time they said they were actively working on it. Something about there being two systems and they are trying to close the old one (which used to take 3 months to process an iqama) so they can start up the new system (which should only take a week).
I feel a little better now that there is an end in sight but I do have concerns that they won't even have the iqama by the end of the semester. In which case, I don't know what will happen...

I intend to update this page when we finally do have an outcome.

I hope you and your children are able to join your husband much sooner!

Thank you so much for the reply. Even though I was hoping for more positive news, I still very much so appreciate the information.
Sorry to hear things are taking so long.
It’s incredibly hard to be away from the ones you love.
Please do update this page when something finally gives for you! I will be keeping my fingers crossed that both our family’s can join our husbands soon! :)

My husband got the iqama on Thursday (3 and a half months later). alhamdulilah. It seems like he will still have to apply for permission for us to come. I don't know how long that may take :(

I’m so glad to hear his Iqama finally went threw! That was a long wait for you and the family.
My husband got lucky I suppose and his was processed pretty quickly. Its been a few weeks now since he received it and he has started the family visa process. He applied online but I believe there were some complications with it because he only holds a high school diploma and nothing else so we are now waiting to see how to proceed. It looks like we will have to do it by paper application. Fingers crossed for both of us that the family visa procedure is easy and speedy!
We will make it to or husbands eventually!

Thanks so much for the update! You and your family are in my thoughts. :)

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