Saudi Arabia

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Introduction

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the largest country in the Arabian Peninsula. Its population is around 26 million, of which an estimated 6 million are expatriate workers.

On the west coast, Saudi Arabia is bordered by the Red Sea and on the east by the Arabian Gulf. To the south there are borders with the Yemen and the Sultanate of Oman. To the east lie the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and the island state of Bahrain. In the north, Saudi Arabia has borders with Kuwait, Iraq and Jordan.

Saudi Arabia geography is diverse, with forests, grasslands, mountain ranges and deserts. The climate varies from region to region. Temperatures can reach over 110 degrees Fahrenheit (43 degrees Celcius) in the desert in summer, while the winter temperatures in the North and Central parts of the country can drop below freezing. Saudi Arabia gets very little rain – about four inches a year on average.

The country's area is estimated to be some 2,331,000 sq km, which is the size of the whole of Western Europe put together.

History

Saudi Arabia traces its roots back to the earliest civilizations of the Arabian Peninsula. Over the centuries, the peninsula has played an important role in history as an ancient trade center and as the birthplace of Islam, one of the world’s major monotheistic religions. Read more
 

Government

Saudi Arabia is a monarchy based on Islam. The government is headed by the King, who is also the commander in chief of the military.  Read more
 

Economy and Global Trade

Saudi Arabia’s free market economy has undergone remarkable changes in a relatively short period of time. It has evolved from a basic agricultural society into a regional and global economic power with a modern infrastructure. Read more

Education

Western children have the options of attending many international schools.

Riyadh

The American International School - Riyadh

British International School of Riyadh

Al-Rissalah International School
 

Jeddah

British International School of Jeddah

Al-Waha International School

American International School of Jeddah
 

Al Khobar/Dhahran/Dammam

Dhahran British Grammar School (ISG)

International Schools Group - Dammam

British International School of Al-Khobar
 

Jubail

Jubail International School

ISG Jubail School

Healthcare

Most employers provide private healthcare as part of an employment package.
 

Riyadh

There are large numbers of hospitals and medical centres located in Riyadh and include private hospitals such as:

Al Hammadi Hospital

Saudi German Hospital

Riyadh National Hospital
 


Government Hospital

King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre


Jeddah

Private Hospitals include:

Saudi German Hospital

International Medical Centre


Al Khobar

Private Hospitals include:

Almana General Hospital

Saad Specialist Hospital


Government Hospital

King Fahad Military Medical Complex


Jubail

Private Hospital

Mouwasat Hospital
 


Housing

The vast majority of expatriates live in secure walled compounds. Many compounds have the facilities of a small town and excellent recreational facilities. The more popular compounds are listed below.

Riyadh

Cordoba Oasis Village Compound
Seder Village
Eid Villas
Arizona Golf Resort

Jeddah

Mura Bustan

Al-Khobar/Dhahran/Dammam

Canary Village
Oasis Residential Resorts
Eurovillage Compound


Jubail

The majority of expatriates in Jubail live in secure company owned compounds. 

Bajrai Garden Village

Major compounds in Jubail include the SABIC and Desert Palms Compounds. 


Security

Expatriates living in Saudi Arabia generally agree that risks are now low, but precautions need to be taken on a constant basis.

Tourism & Recreation

Saudi Tourism

Riyadh

Riyadh is the nations legislative, financial administrative, diplomatic and commercial center. It is the location for foreign embassies, universities, banks and corporate headquarters. It is the capital of the nation.


Riyadh is a particularly youthful city, with half the population under 20 years of age. The land around it, however, is old.

In a region where tradition, modernity and globalization converge, Riyadh is the focal point of the Middle East’s largest economy. Riyadh is an international business hub where you can experience contrasting lifestyles in a traditional Islamic environment.
Read more

Jeddah

Known as the Paris of Saudi Arabia, Jeddah is mid-way down the country's Red Sea coast. It is considered the most interesting and friendly of Saudi Arabia's big cities. Jeddah is centred on Al-Balad, the strip of buildings along the coastal road with the old city directly behind them. Jeddah's Red Sea coast is full of reefs, creeks and wadis to keep even the most advanced diver busy. There are numerous underwater wrecks just waiting to be explored. Read more
 

Al-Khobar/Dhahran/Dammam (Eastern Province)

Al-Khobar/Dhahran/Dammam These three cities in the eastern province of the Kingdom are adjacent to the Causeway which links them to the island state of Bahrain, a drive of approximately 50 minutes. Dhahran is the headquarters of Saudi Aramco, the world's largest oil producer, Dammam is the industrial city which also houses the seaport and international airport and Al Khobar is the commercial centre. Read more

Jubail

Jubail is an industrial city and as such does not have many tourist attractions.  There are good recreational facilities attached to the compounds and at the Intercontinental Hotel which also hosts a Beach Club.  Many Jubail residents travel to Bahrain (2 hours drive) at weekends where an extensive range of shopping and entertainment are available. Jubail was a small fishing village until the mid 1970s at which time it became one of the kingdom's two newly-created industrial cities.

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Expat Careers International was established in 2001 to meet the demand for expatriate recruitment into the Arabian Gulf (GCC) region.

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