Hot weather gear but keep in mind that women must wear the black Abaya when out in public and that men should not wear shorts outside of any compunds.
Miscellaneous: If you are an XL or above size in the US or Europe you better stock up on clothes. You won't find much at all your size, if anything. When you do find XXL once you open it you get one of two thinkgs. It is either really a L or it is going to shrink to be an L. Either way, you just wasted money.
I have been reading on the net that these items are forbidden but here is my input:*
-contraceptives: not true,I used to bring my pills from abroad....and we do have them in many brands in our local pharmacies.same goes with condoms(take off the shelf items in any pharmacy).
- Jewellery: not true(but maybe in enormous quantities!)
-musical instruments: not true!
There are shops in the kingdom that sells music instruments,pianos,drums,violins,ect.
-Mobile phones with cams:
Not true,our market is filled with mobiles with cams,plus they wouldnt look at the mobile you`re holding.so no worries.*
-Pork and pork products.
-Pornography on DVDs,Vedio films,porn Magazines,sex toys....ect.
-Religious books: only of other than Islam.And any symbol of other religions such as a cross necklace.
not that strict, at a time I brought 10 Barbie dolls to the kingdom as gifts and nobody interfered.
- statues in the form of an animal or human:
not that strict either...I brought statues from India,Pakistan,France,Mexico,Morocco and many more than I can remember!
Miscellaneous: The best type of Sun cream to bring along with you is one that is non waterproof. Not being waterproof will allow your skin to breathe better and to perspire better. This will keep you more comfortable when you are out and about and not swimming. The waterproof sun cream can be easily purchased here. However the cost may be more than what you are used to.
Miscellaneous: Bring along a guide to the Middle East buy a reputable company such as Lonely Planet, Foot Prints or another company. Read the reviews on Amazon before you buy. My personal preference is Lonely Planet. Although these can be purchased locally, it may not be easy to find. The selection may also be limited so buy before you arrive. Buy a Middle East travel guide as Saudi Arabia is a great hub to see the other countries in the ME. It will also give you great travel ideas in the region.
Light weight clothing for the very hot times of the years. If you are going to be on a compound where you can where what you want, bring that type clothing. But for off the compound, bring conservative clothing. Flip Flops are nice for the beaches and pools, sandals are good all the time. Tennis shoes. A few dressy clothes for dinner parties and dining out. Bring a warm jacket or sweater for cool winter mornings, or for artic cold restaurants.
Photo Equipment: Camera's, film or memory cards, and batteries. Be careful taking pictures in certain areas where it is frowned upon.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Flip flops, conservative swim suits (no bikini's), beach towel. Lots and Lots of Sunscreen! And don't forget the sunglasses either, they will come in handy here!
Luggage and bags:
The other one to consider when coming to Saudi Arabia is leave anything that is considered 'bad' here in the Muslim world so leave any Pork products at home and have a nice Pork roast before you come over. Yes us Pork lovers we can survive without our weekly fix of bacon, there is always an alternative!!
Also for those guys who like a little flesh leave your beloved girly mags behind the same applies to us girls anything that exposes a womans breasts etc.... will be either taking off you or a sharp warning will be issued. Use your common sense here and think carefully. Most things are found here so you can pick up virtually anything you like in any of the stores. If there is something that you are real paritial to and can't bear to leave it behind OK take it but keep within the guidelines. If you have someone nice back home, you can always get them to send what you need (in my case it is my dear Mum and Dad).
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: When travelling to Saudi Arabia work out what size you are in various International Clothes sizes before you come. This will help you a lot as there is a mixture of all clothes here that come from various countries. What may fit you at home may not necessarly fit you here. Some things are fine and if you know the stores here from back home that's fine but for a New Zealander it was interesting to see the different sizes that said UK size 14 and US size 12 for example. The same applies for your feet.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: OK for the ladies, yes they do stock our personal hygiene bits and bobs here. Tampons are avaliable but depending on where you live and where you do your shopping they may not be always there especially in the little corner shops. So perhaps bring a few boxes of your favourite brand with you and then get them as you see them. Safeway generally stock them.
Photo Equipment: This is all readily avaliable in the Kingdom
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Beach gear and Outdoor gear can be found in a lot of the Sport shops.
Miscellaneous: Here in Al Khobar there are several Cargo places around the place particuarly in and around close to the Computer Square. We used Ameco Cargo who came to us and picked up the items we wished to send home. Some companies may want you to take your luggage down there but these guys were very good and our stuff arrived home safely in New Zealand.
Weather is hot and dry although it can get cold in the winter. However, because of the their culture, skimpy clothes like shorts and tank tops are not allowed especially in women. Moreover, women foreigners are required to wear a black 'abaya' when visiting some places where only the head and hands are seen lest you be caught by Muttawas.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Don't count on it. Can't have fun in the sun.
Hats, Hats and more hats.... oh and a good pair or two of sunglasses.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Bring one years worth of medical supplies with you if you are moving there. Bring the little thing you miss or will miss from home. You will be surprised how much they will mean later in your trip.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Buy it there... Get a good Bedouin tent at the tent souk.
Its very hot, wear loose clothes, preferable light colored. Avoid shorts, loose trousers are better. For women, abaya and head cover are absolutely essential. DO NOT try to get around this. There are Muttawah or religious police on the streets to monitor this.
Miscellaneous: Insect repellant
Miscellaneous: "Own only what you can carry with you; know language, know countries, know people. Let your memory be your travel bag" - Alexander Solzhenitsyn
I don't normally look to stay at the Intercontinental when I'm visiting a new city, but the hotel...more
The Al-Fasaliah hotel in Riyadh is part of the leading hotels of the world, from check in to check...more
Every bit a Hilton! The stay was wonderful and the employees were friendly and helpful. The best...more