Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia to resume domestic tourism starting from June 21

Saudi passengers queue for a temperature check at the King Fahad International Airport in Riyadh. (File photo: AFP)

Saudi Arabia will resume domestic tourism starting from June 21 after the Kingdom halted it for more than three months due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, the Minister of Tourism Ahmed al-Khateeb said on Wednesday.

For more coronavirus news, visit our dedicated page.

The ministry had launched a study to examine whether Saudi Arabian citizens want tourism within the country to reopen, he added.

“It was revealed in a research study carried out by the Tourism Authority that 80 percent of Saudi citizens want to take advantage of domestic tourism. We will launch the domestic tourism program for the public after having made necessary coordination with the Ministry of Health and the concerned higher authorities,” al-Khateeb said.

For all the latest headlines follow our Google News channel online or via the app.

The minister said that relaunching domestic tourism would help reduce COVID-19’s negative impact on the tourism sector, adding that the stimulus package offered by the country’s government had already helped ease the pressure.

“Saudi Arabia has initiated a package of financial stimulus activities with a total value of more than $61 billion to protect jobs and businesses and reduce the economic burden of the crisis. The domestic tourism sector has benefited from it as one of the important economic sectors, as it covered 60 percent of salaries of Saudi employees in the private sector for a period of three months, al-Khateeb said.

Also read: Coronavirus: Resuming international flights to, from Saudi Arabia under review

Return to normalcy

A return to normalcy does not mean that the coronavirus pandemic is over, health ministry spokesman Mohammed al-Abd al-Ali had said on Thursday.

“The virus is still there, the virus is active, the pandemic is still there, and there is still no vaccine. Research is ongoing, and we are hopeful. Treatment protocols are constantly being updated,” he said.

“A return to normalcy is now possible, but must be done with caution,” al-Abd al-Ali added.

Saudi Arabia has so far reported 145,991 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus.

Read more:

Fear of catching coronavirus negatively impacts mental health: Saudi Health Minster

Coronavirus cases, deaths in Saudi will keep rising if people ignore rules: Ministry

SHOW MORE
Last Update: Friday, 19 June 2020 KSA 13:28 - GMT 10:28
Top