Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Regional Forums > Middle East

Middle East Topics specific to the Middle East countries, from Syria south to Yemen
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 13 Nov 2004
strikingviking's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Mazatlan, Mexico
Posts: 194
Saudi and UAE transit visas

After being turned down by several Iranian consulates, I'm stuck in Instanbul seeking a way to Pakistan. Plan B is to ride south through Syria, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, UAE to Oman and find a ship heading for Karachi. The Syrians have assured me on the phone that visas are issued to Americans in one afternoon with no letter of recommendation needed. Jordan is equally accomodating.

The question is how and where to obtain a three day Saudi transit visa. I realize that a visa for the next country is needed before even applying so that leaves the issue of how and where to get a visa for UAE. From reading the information on these threads it appears that regulations are constantly changing and of course, are affected by nationality.

Once in Oman, is it possible to cross to Karachi by ferry? Most ships do not allow passengers to accompany their vehicles but I don't like the idea of being separated from my bike. If all else fails, there's air freighting. All suggestions are deeply appreciated.
Thanks
Glen www.strikingviking.net


------------------
__________________
EARTH RIDE!
Understanding the world through adventure travel.
www.strikingviking.net

Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 14 Nov 2004
beddhist's Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Whangarei, NZ
Posts: 2,225
I doubt there are ferries going to Pak, but there are lots of Dhows. Met a whole Scottish family living in a full sized bus that had taken that route in about 1988. Being British they were in the same boat as you are now.

This is not a regular service, though, so you just go to the port and ask and haggle.

If it works out you should be in for a real adventure!

------------------
Salut from Southern France, the bikers' paradise,

Peter.
__________________
Cheers,
Peter.

Europe to NZ 2006-10
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 23 Nov 2004
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Zurich
Posts: 47
You can get the UAE-visa at the border, entering from Saudi, took me 20 minutes including getting an insurance which must be some kind of record.

Bear in mind that crossing Saudi in 3 days is a huge effort. From Jordan to Jeddah you have 1000 km, to Riyadh another 1000 and from Riyadh to UAE about 700 (I think). Add sand storms to that. We had to take a couple of days break after each leg, we were just exhausted. Especially the road from HufHuf (east of Riyadh) to UAE is notorious for storms.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 23 Nov 2004
strikingviking's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Mazatlan, Mexico
Posts: 194
How and where did you get your transit visa for SA? How long did it take? I am Istanbul headed for Syria in a few days. I have Pakistan and Indian visas. I understand that it's necessary to show a visa for the next country but since that would be UAE and they issue visas at the border, what would you suggest?
Thanks
__________________
EARTH RIDE!
Understanding the world through adventure travel.
www.strikingviking.net

Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 25 Nov 2004
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Zurich
Posts: 47
Sorry, can't help you there, I had relatives in Saudi who managed to get an invitation for me, so I was on a proper visa, not a transit visa. What does the Saudi embassy say in Istanbul (I suppose they have one?) regarding you not having the UAE visa yet?
Once again, you're in for a long ride crossing from Jordan to UAE in 3 days...
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 26 Nov 2004
strikingviking's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Mazatlan, Mexico
Posts: 194
Thanks for the info. Plan B is to truck the bike to Dubai from Amman and fly there myself and try to ship to Karachi. Any thoughts on this? Airfreighting Amman to Karachi is a last resort.
__________________
EARTH RIDE!
Understanding the world through adventure travel.
www.strikingviking.net

Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 26 Nov 2004
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Zurich
Posts: 47
Sounds like a better plan to me. My spontaneous impression of Saudi is that I never want to go back. As a westener, you are not welcome by people on the streets. Only in Saudi did we have conversations like:
"Where are you from?"
"Sweden!"
"America, Sweden, Britain, boom boom"
Or having cigarettes and peach stones thrown at us while riding on a highway from cars pulling up beside us. The police were great once we learned how to deal with them (showing our visa which in Arabic said "Mr bla bla is officially invited by the embassador...".
I must admit however that the further east we got, the nicer the people. You know, small things, for example not being uncomfortable entering a normal lunch restaurant anymore.
I've heard a lot of positive things about Oman and Yemen, would be nice to go there sometime.

Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 2 Dec 2004
strikingviking's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Mazatlan, Mexico
Posts: 194
What about a more eastern route to UAE? Looking on the map it is only a thousand miles. Am I missing something here?
Thanks
Glen
__________________
EARTH RIDE!
Understanding the world through adventure travel.
www.strikingviking.net

Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 3 Dec 2004
AliBaba's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Norway
Posts: 1,350
The eastern route is a bit more then 2000 kms. I don't know the state of the road or if it is a problem that it goes close to the Iraqi border for 800 kms.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 13 Dec 2004
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Zurich
Posts: 47
I also don't know what state that road is in, but last year most of the clashes between police and extremists were in the north-eastern part of Saudi, which might be taken into consideration.
The high-way from Jeddah to Riyadh is great. We were doing 150km/h all the way.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 18 Dec 2004
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Posts: 7
I'm british and live in Riyadh and regularly tour Saudi Arabia.

its fine if you know your stuff

the thing is touring on a bike is uncomprehensible to a lot of people so a lot of the strange looks you get is not because you're western, but a look of "he must be crazy travelling on a bike" ....

anyway I live in Riyadh, if you're coming from the north you'll have to pass through here before heading on to the UAE, if you're coming through here i'd be glad to help you while you're here, email me ((mail link above)) ....

I once travelled from here to Dubai in one go on a goldwing (just stopping for petrol) its not bad .... actually quite safe and the roads are decent ...

after you cross the UAE border you're in a cross between Arabia and Europe - the roads are brilliant and the services much better than anywhere else in the middle east ....

Anyway let me know if you dont know anyone here I could sort you out with a place to stay in Riyadh...


===================
email address in post removed by Grant - see http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb/faq.shtml#notify for why. Use the link above to contact directly, or just post a reply.


[This message has been edited by Grant Johnson (edited 19 December 2004).]
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 18 Dec 2004
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Posts: 7

Also, coming from Jordan, the easiest route would be:

o Amman (about 120km to
o Azraq (border)
o Gurayat
o Traif
o Arar (from here to Rafha the road is average)
o Rafha
o Hafr-Al-Batin (this city is about 100 km from Kuwait)
o Majma'ah (from here to riyadh about 200 km, careful of speed traps, limit in SA is 120 kph, but 130 kph is ok)
o Riyadh

TOTAL: about 1500 km from Amman to Riyadh

Head to Arar first you can stay there if you like it has good hotels (yes its close to the Iraqi border but its not like stray bullets from falluja are likely to hit you ) ...
then from Arar through Al-Qassim (majma'ah) onto Riyadh. From Gurayat to Rafha the roads are two-lane (one in each direction) most of the way, but they're fairly safe and a new motorway was being constructed last time i passed there (last March) i'd assume its ready by now, and from Majma'ah to Riyadh the motorway is excellent, but be careful as there are speed traps all along the way dont exceed 130 kph ...

from Riyadh to UAE the road is OK, a bit better than the Arar route, but after you enter UAE its good ...

Food in Saudi is good and you can eat from any restaurant besite the road the standards here reharding food are very good, but hotels are not ... when you fill up on petrol try to use Sasco petrol stations they are clearly marked and you can trust them (some independent stations here use dodgy petrol)

Any questions about Saudi feel free to ask i'll try my best to help

I'll get details of the UAE route later if you like

Enjoy your trip!
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 3 Jan 2005
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Helsinki/Finland - Riyadh/Saudi Arabia
Posts: 21
Quote:
Originally posted by dragonninja:

Also, coming from Jordan, the easiest route would be:

o Amman (about 120km to
o Azraq (border)
o Gurayat
o Traif
o Arar (from here to Rafha the road is average)
o Rafha
o Hafr-Al-Batin (this city is about 100 km from Kuwait)


I would actually following the signs at Rafha that direct you to a 'short cut' that joins the road between Majma'ah and Hafr Al-Batin about halfway between the towns. Very good condition and nice fast sweepers and better scenery and less traffic. Doesn't cut much distance though. Also there is only one petrol station in the long bit between Linah and ... I forget the name but a town close,maybe 50km from the Majmah'ah - Hafr Al-Batin road.

Quote:
o Majma'ah (from here to riyadh about 200 km, careful of speed traps, limit in SA is 120 kph, but 130 kph is ok)
o Riyadh

TOTAL: about 1500 km from Amman to Riyadh

1485 km from Riyadh to Saudi-Jordan border with the short-cut.


Quote:

Food in Saudi is good and you can eat from any restaurant besite the road the standards here reharding food are very good, but hotels are not ... when you fill up on petrol try to use Sasco petrol stations they are clearly marked and you can trust them (some independent stations here use dodgy petrol)

Never had any trouble with petrol in Saudi. That's with a high-compression 1100XX.

Quote:
Any questions about Saudi feel free to ask i'll try my best to help
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Same here.

I do disagree a bit about the speeds though. I have never ever been stopped for speeding in Saudi on a bike. That includes passing Traffic police vehicles at 260kph and slowing down to see if they feel like giving you a ticket. It is advisable to slow down when you see sign of civilization though, but that doesn't happen very often. Definitely slow down for bigger towns as they have check-points with radards.

The biggest problem with the law-men is that they want to stop you to chat and offer tea, which slows you down a bit. I usually make the Jordan border in about 8-9 hours. Weather is pretty much the only thing that'll slow you down.



I'll get details of the UAE route later if you like
Quote:

The new road from Hofuf directly to UAE is reportedly very good, but not many petrol stations there yet.
Enjoy your trip!
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 4 Jan 2005
strikingviking's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Mazatlan, Mexico
Posts: 194
Thanks for the advice guys. The Saudis also denied a three day transit visa so I rode through Jordan and Egypt to Israel. Looks like I'll have to airfreight from Amman to Karachi. I post a diary and photos at www.strikingviking.net
FYI, The Sinai is some mighty fine motorcycle riding! Love the Bedouins.
__________________
EARTH RIDE!
Understanding the world through adventure travel.
www.strikingviking.net

Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 6 Jan 2005
jc's Avatar
jc jc is offline
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Mandurah, Western Australia
Posts: 231
Hi, what is the road like from south? We want to ride from Yemen to Jordan sometime soon. Also on a 3 day transit visa. We're on a GS.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


 
 


HU DVD Summer Special!

Now that summer is here, get On the Road! Take 30% off the Achievable Dream - On the Road! 2-DVD set until August 31 only. Get On the Road! Learn the tips to staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure!

Our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.

"A fantastic, informative and inspirational DVD."

"It's brilliant - thank you very much!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'ONTHEROAD' on your order when you checkout.


Renedian Adventures


Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!


What turns you on to motorcycle travel?


Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!


New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.


Books & DVDs

amazon

All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.


Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 16:11.