Saudi Riyal


Saudi Riyal (SAR) - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  1. What is the Saudi Riyal (SAR)?
 The Saudi Riyal (SAR) is the official currency of Saudi Arabia. It is symbolized as "ر.س" or "SAR" and is subdivided into smaller units known as halalas.
  1. What are the common denominations of Riyal banknotes and coins?
 Saudi Riyal banknotes are issued in various denominations, including 1 SAR, 5 SAR, 10 SAR, 20 SAR, 50 SAR, 100 SAR, and 500 SAR. Coins are issued in denominations of 1 halala, 5 halalas, 10 halalas, 25 halalas, 50 halalas, and 1 Riyal.
  1. Who issues the Saudi Riyal?
 The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) is responsible for issuing the Saudi Riyal and overseeing the monetary policy of the country.
  1. Can I use other currencies for transactions in Saudi Arabia?
 While the official currency for transactions in Saudi Arabia is the Saudi Riyal, some major international hotels and businesses might accept major foreign currencies like US Dollars. However, it's recommended to use the local currency.
  1. Are credit/debit cards widely accepted in Saudi Arabia?
 Credit and debit cards are generally accepted in urban areas, shopping malls, and hotels. However, cash is still commonly used for smaller businesses and markets. It's a good idea to have some Riyals on hand.
  1. Is it better to exchange currency at the airport or in the city?
 While currency exchange services are available at airports, rates might be more favorable in the city. It's recommended to compare rates and consider exchanging a small amount at the airport for immediate expenses.
  1. Are there restrictions on bringing local currency in or out of Saudi Arabia?
 Travelers entering or leaving Saudi Arabia are required to declare if they are carrying an amount exceeding SAR 60,000 or its equivalent in foreign currency. Failing to declare might result in penalties or confiscation.
  1. Can I exchange Saudi Riyals back to my home currency?
 Yes, you can exchange Saudi Riyals back to your home currency at currency exchange bureaus, banks, or airports. Exchange rates may vary, and fees could be associated with the exchange.
  1. What is the cost of living like in Saudi Arabia?
 The cost of living in Saudi Arabia varies based on the city and your lifestyle. Major cities like Riyadh and Jeddah might have higher costs compared to smaller towns.
  1. Where can I find the latest exchange rates for the Saudi Riyal?
 You can find up-to-date exchange rates for the Saudi Riyal on financial news websites, currency converter apps, and the official website of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority.
  1. Is tipping customary in Saudi Arabia?
 Tipping is not widely expected in Saudi Arabia, especially in more traditional settings. However, in modern establishments and international hotels, tipping for exceptional service is appreciated. Please note that the information provided here is based on the state of knowledge up to September 2021, and there might have been developments or changes since that time.