There are many aspects of life here that are very different from the country and
culture you have left. We believe that the most important step in adjusting to your
life in Saudi Arabia is to learn some of the customs and laws. Then you will become
more comfortable in your new environment. Once you become familiar with the cultural
differences life can be very exciting here.
Here are some suggested “do’s and don’ts” for your own comfort and well-being.
Keep an open mind regarding the cultural and social differences you observe.
Be flexible and open to change. You will appreciate the new experiences. Accept
the challenge of life in a wonderful, ancient country with a rich and exciting history.
Attempt to learn and use the Arabic language.
Remain flexible and try to adapt to local customs. For example:
Attire: women should wear conservative, loose fitting clothing.
If you feel better when wearing the Abaya, then do so.
- Ramadan: is an Islamic Holy month during which Muslims observe a fast between
sunrise and sunset. Please respect this religious holiday by refraining from eating,
chewing gum, drinking or smoking in public during daylight hours.
Try to impose your western values on the Saudi society. Don’t expect life to be
just the same as it was in your home country.
Photograph people or any area of national security such as airports, military installations,
Traditional Arab Etiquette
Conversational good manners and considerations for the customs and beliefs
of others prevail in Saudi Arabia as elsewhere. The Saudis themselves are good humored,
kind and informal as they expect others to be.
Memorize and carry correct name and telephone numbers of your organization
(employer), or spouse’s organization (employer). Know the correct names, numbers
and locations of the schools your children attend.
Make sure your children have the name and phone number of your compound, your telephone
number, and a trusted neighbor in case of an emergency. This is especially important
for the emergency information file at your children’s school.
Voltage in the kingdom can be either 110v or 220v. Know your voltage and choose
your appliances accordingly. Check out the various types of equipment, for example,
there are several different types of VCR’s in the Kingdom. If you have a computer,
a voltage regulator may be necessary. A surge protector for computers and other
electronic equipment is highly recommended.
You are an invited guest in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. You were not forced
to come here. You are subject to their local laws. It is prudent for your family
to make itself aware of the relevant laws and customs