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Are you ready to settle down with someone, want to take the next step into marriage while in Saudi Arabia? Find out about the necessary steps and if you qualify to get married. 

Saudi Arabia is a country that holds marriage as something incredibly valuable. It is a privilege to get married and a huge accomplishment to settle and start a family. The slight problem with getting married in Saudi Arabia is that it isn't an easy process.

For starters, regardless of your religious beliefs, only Muslim individuals can complete a legal Saudi marriage. The Saudi Arabia court does not recognize marriage between any other faiths. This is mainly based on the courts abiding by the Sharia Islamic Law.

That being said, if you are of a different religion and/or nationality, the only way to have your marriage recognized in Saudi Arabia is to wed outside of the country and upon returning, submit a legal marriage certificate.

If you are Muslim then there are a few things that you must check to ensure you qualify to wed in Saudi Arabia. See the options below and what is required of them:

If both parties (male, female) are foreigners (Non-Saudi)

  • Both must be Iqama (residence permit), holders
  • Female must have written permission from her current sponsor
  • Both must agree to the terms of the marriage
  • Religious practices must be completed and agreed upon
  • Marriage Ceremony and License will be performed and issued at the Saudi Family Courts.

If the man is a Saudi National and the woman is a foreigner

  • The man must first apply to the courts for permission to wed someone of a differing nationality. Once approval is granted, then they can proceed as usual.
  • The woman must have written permission from her current sponsor
  • Both must agree to the terms of the marriage
  • Religious practices must be completed and agreed upon
  • The marriage ceremony and license will be performed and issued at the Saudi Family Courts.

Please note that a foreign woman married to a Saudi is not eligible for Saudi Nationality. She will receive the same benefits of a Saudi National but will not be granted citizenship. However, any children born from the marriage will receive Saudi citizenship upon birth.

The woman is Saudi and the man is a foreigner

This case is very subject-specific. It is currently not permitted for Saudi females to wed non-Saudi-males.

It is practised within Saudi Arabia but the courts must decide on a case-to-case basis.

Good to know:

A Saudi woman married to a foreigner will become her husbands' permanent sponsor. Any children born between them will also fall under her sponsorship. A child born to a non-Saudi male is not eligible for citizenship.

Both parties are the same sex

Same-sex marriage is illegal in Saudi Arabia.

It is illegal to practice homosexuality or display behaviours of such in public.

Punishment is very severe and can include punishment by death

Good to know:

Saudi Arabia has introduced an at-home marriage service to foreigners. A service previously only open to Saudi nationals has now been extended to all residents of Saudi Arabia. You can now have your marriage certificate ordained and authorized at home.

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.