The Kingdom can feel isolated and restrictive much of the time, so staying in contact with family and friends is an important part of expat life in Saudi Arabia.

The telecommunications sector has seen much improvement and diversification in recent years and with a competitive market, expats will have a variety of options when it comes to keeping in touch in Saudi Arabia.


Internet in Saudi Arabia

Expats have access to fixed-line and wireless broadband, and mobile internet. WiFi is widely available in cities and mobile broadband is increasingly common. However, fixed-line connections are often the cheapest and most reliable option. 

The most prominent internet service providers are STC, Mobily and Zain. Expats generally only need their Iqama (residence permit) to open an account.

VoIP and instant messaging applications such as Skype and WhatsApp are easily accessed, but have been subject to bans in the past.


Mobile phones in Saudi Arabia

Mobile services in Saudi Arabia are extensive, even in remote areas of the country. Pre- and post-paid packages are available. Many expats opt for pre-paid SIM cards, which can be bought at provider outlets or the airport. Post-paid accounts can also be set up at provider outlets. As with the internet, the most popular mobile service providers are STC, Mobily and Zain.


Censorship in Saudi Arabia

Despite the ease of accessing communications in Saudi Arabia, content is heavily restricted. Anyone accessing or publishing information can't be seen to criticise or contradict the values of Islam and the state.

Numerous pages relating to health, religion, education, humour and even entertainment have been banned. But the most aggressive censorship is reserved for content relating to pornography, drug use, gambling and religious conversion of Muslims.


English-language media in Saudi Arabia

Keeping up to date with news back home is also a good way to stay connected. Most English-language media is based on local and international hard news. Electronic and print publications like Arab News also offer information and advice aimed at the expat community.

Expat Health Insurance

Cigna Health Insurance -

Cigna Global

Cigna Global can tailor an international health insurance plan to perfectly fit the needs of you and your family. With 86 million customers in over 200 countries, Cigna Global has unrivalled experience in dealing with varied and unique medical situations and delivering high standards of service wherever you live in the world. Cigna are offering a 10% discount on all policies bought in November and December.

Get a quote from Cigna Global

Moving Companies

Sirelo logo

Moving Internationally?

Sirelo has a network of more than 500 international removal companies that can move your furniture and possessions to your new home. By filling in a form, you’ll get up to 5 quotes from recommended movers. This service is free of charge and will help you select an international moving company that suits your needs and budget.

Get your free no-obligation quotes now!