Saudi Arabia

Malaria and travel vaccination advice for Saudi Arabia.


1. South Western provinces bordering Yemen (incl Asir province) below 2000m:

There is a low risk of malaria. Advise mosquito bite avoidance.

2. Asir province >2000m, Makkah (Mecca), Medina, Jeddah, Riyadh & Ta'if:

There is no risk of malaria. Advise mosquito bite avoidance.

Special risk groups

In low risk areas, antimalarials may be considered in exceptional circumstances for travellers who are at higher risk of malaria (such as long term travellers visiting friends and relatives), or of severe complications from malaria (such as the elderly [>70 years], the immunosuppressed, those with complex co-morbidities, pregnant women, infants and young children).

Travellers with an absent or poorly functioning spleen should be dissuaded from travel to any area with risk of malaria, but where travel is essential awareness, rigorous bite avoidance and antimalarials should be advised.


Travellers should be up to date with routinely recommended vaccinations according to the routine UK immunisation programme.

Hepatitis A
Vaccination recommended for travellers whose activities put them at increased risk, including those who are staying with or visiting the local population, frequent and/or long-stay travellers to areas where sanitation and food hygiene are likely to be poor, those with existing medical conditions such as liver disease or haemophilia, men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs, those who may be exposed to the virus through their work, and those going to areas of hepatitis A outbreaks who have limited access to safe water and medical care.

Hepatitis B
Vaccination recommended for travellers whose activities or medical history put them at increased risk, including those who may have unprotected sex, those who may be exposed to contaminated needles (eg, through injecting drug use or receiving medical or dental care), those who may be exposed to blood or body fluids through their work (eg, health workers), long-stay travellers, those who are participating in contact sports and families adopting children from this country.

Travellers arriving from polio-endemic countries, countries with vaccine-derived polio cases in the last 12 months or countries which remain vulnerable to polio require proof of receipt of a dose of oral polio vaccine or inactivated poliovirus vaccine, within a period of no more than 12 months or less than 4 weeks prior to departure for Saudi Arabia. These travellers will also receive 1 dose of oral polio vaccination at the borders on arrival in Saudi Arabia regardless of age and vaccination status. 

Meningitis ACWY
Vaccination recommended for travellers whose activities or medical condition put them at increased risk, including healthcare workers, travellers visiting friends and relatives, those who live or travel ‘rough’ such as backpackers, long-stay travellers who have close contact with the local population, those with complement disorders and those who do not have a functioning spleen. Proof of vaccination with the quadrivalent ACWY vaccine is a visa requirement for Hajj and Umrah pilgrims and seasonal workers.

Vaccination recommended for travellers whose activities put them at increased risk, including those at risk due to their work (eg, health workers or those working with animals), those travelling to areas where access to post-exposure treatment and medical care is limited, those planning higher risk activities such as running or cycling, and long-stay travellers.

Yellow fever

International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis (ICVP) required if arriving from a country with a risk of yellow fever transmission or having transited for more than 12 hours through an airport of a risk country.

- applies to travellers from 12 months of age.

If a receiving country requires an ICVP as a condition of entry, and the individual should not receive the vaccine on medical grounds, a letter of medical exemption can be considered.

Travellers should have completed a primary vaccination course according to the UK schedule. If travelling to a country where medical facilities may be limited, a booster dose of a tetanus-containing vaccine is recommended if the last dose was more than ten years ago even if five doses of vaccine have been given previously.

Further information

Abbreviated information provided by the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC). Refer to the Saudi Arabia page on for full details.

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