Saudi Arabia: Transportation

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Important: Be sure to check both general and product-based categories for relevant information. Product-based categories include parts and accessories unless otherwise specified. See disclaimer below and use independent care before relying on this information.

Major international airports

(Last updated on 2023-01-30)

Major ocean ports

Saudi Ports Authority, POB 5162, SA-11422 Riyadh; phone: +966 1 405 0005; fax: +966 1 405 3508; email:

(Last updated on 2023-10-13)

Truck transport

Total roadway system: 152,044 km (94,476 mi); paved: 45,461 km (28,248 mi); unpaved: 106,583 km (66,280 mi).

Saudi Arabia will accede to the TIR Convention and make the system operational in 2017.

(Last updated on 2022-07-14)

Rail transport

Saudi Arabia has several hundred kilometers of standard gauge railways linking the capital Riyadh with the Arab Gulf.

Saudi Railways Company (SAR) operates a 2,750 km (1,708 mi.) north-south railway line and a passenger line from Riyadh to Al-Haditha, close to the Jordanian border. The cargo line runs 556 km (346 mi.) between the King Abdul Aziz Port in Dammam and passes through Al-Ahsa, Abqaiq, Al-Kharj, Haradh, Al-Tawdhihiyah, and Riyadh.

A planned 440 km (274 mi.) Haramain High Speed Rail Project will link Makkah and Medina.

(Last updated on 2022-08-03)

Intermodal container/CTU requirements

The SOLAS Container Weight Verification Requirement for a signed Container Weight Verification (CWV) certificate document or equivalent authenticated electronic data to be provided to the vessel operator or its designated agent in time for vessel load planning applies. This certification must be issued by the shipper or other party who packs a container or other CTU, or by an agent thereof who physically weighs the loaded container.

Check with vessel operator and/or terminal operator for particular requirements and the deadline prior to vessel loading for receiving this certificate. A certificate not received by the deadline will result in the container not being accepted and/or not loaded aboard the intended vessel.

(Last updated on 2023-11-24)

Dangerous goods

Prior approval from port authorities is required for the importation of chemicals and hazardous materials. Without approval cargo may not be discharged.

For products and materials in a dangerous goods list, refer to the applicable international and national dangerous goods regulations (DGR) as adopted and/or authorized for use by the competent authority of the origin, destination and transit countries. Requirements for classification: UN number, packaging (UN POP), marking, labeling (hazard label) and documentation (Shipper's Declaration for Dangerous Goods) must all be complied with, including variations by transportation mode and national regulations (i.e., restrictions and additional requirements not required imposed under international regulations).

Transportation carriers may further restrict their acceptance of some, most or all types of dangerous goods, so this must also be checked with each prospective carrier before shipment.

As a general rule, many countries may require the use of the country's own language (in addition to English) on the shipper's declaration for dangerous goods and MSDS. We recommend that you contact the importer and carrier for exact requirements concerning this issue.

(Last updated on 2017-01-23)

Environmental waste or pollutants

Industrial and toxic waste residues are prohibited as it can harm people, animals, and plants, whether it ends up in the ground, in streams, or even in the air. Some toxins, such as mercury and lead, persist in the environment for many years and accumulate over time. Humans and wildlife absorb these toxic substances when they eat fish or other prey.

The import of environmental waste or pollutants, or dumping of such materials in territorial waters, is typically prohibited or subject to having a specific government-issued permit.

(Last updated on 2022-08-18)

Important: Exercise independent care before relying on information contained herein. Although we strive to ensure all information is correct and current, GISTnet assumes no liability for detrimental reliance on this information. Trade requirements may change with little or no prior notification, de-facto requirements in certain countries vary from official regulations, and particular shipments and/or importers may have special destination customs arrangements. We encourage you to check with the importer or its customs agent in the destination country for specific importation requirements for specific products and circumstances. We ask your help with feedback ( concerning information which may be outdated or incomplete.