Saudi Arabia: Money & Costs

Saudi Arabia is not a cheap place, but it’s possible to travel relatively inexpensively if you put your mind to it. If you’re on a rock-bottom budget, expect to spend around US$25 a day. If you’d prefer a little comfort, double that amount. If you want luxury, double it again.
Changing travellers’ cheques can be a real pain. Many banks and moneychangers either won’t take them, will only change brands they sell or will only cash them for account holders. Always carry your original purchase receipt with you, as the few places that change cheques will require it. If you’re changing cash, moneychangers will give you a slightly better rate than banks. Saudi Cairo Bank ATMs are linked to the Cirrus and Plus networks.
Tips are not generally expected in Saudi restaurants. There is a service charge, but the money does not go to the (poorly-paid) waiters, so you might want to consider adding a few riyal to your bill. The price of almost anything is negotiable (to a point). In Bedouin markets you can haggle incessantly, but elsewhere it’s a two-step process: you ask for a discount, you get given it. You can either take it or leave it.
Currency of Saudi Arabia is Saudi Riyal and symbolized as ‘SRIs’.

Leave a Comment