The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, Ahmed Al-Khatib, acknowledged not to refrain from housing women without a mahram in tourist accommodation facilities.

However, the Commission stipulated that the woman must present the original recognized national identity, family record, or residence permit for non-Saudi women, as well as proof of passport for those who do not require a residence permit.

The newspaper «Okaz Online» on Friday, Khatib affirmed «in his decision that tourist accommodation facilities not to house women who do not have identification, unless she was accompanied by a relative, with the registration of her relative».

The authority abolished the requirement to prove the identity of the family or the record of the family, in case the applicant was accompanied by his family upon arrival, after it was a mandatory requirement in the past, including «Saudis, residents, foreign visitors, tourists».

The Saudi government on Saturday opened applications for tourist visas online for citizens of 49 countries, while other tourists can apply at embassies and consulates abroad.