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Saudi Tourism taps JCB cardholders


TOKYO, 20 October 2023: Saudi Tourism Authority (STA) and JCB International (JCB) signed a historic agreement last week that should boost tourism to Saudi Arabia by reaching out to JCB cardmembers globally. 

Saudi Tourism Authority president of Asia Pacific markets Alhasan Aldabbagh said: “This is a great opportunity for our tourism industry, as it will offer more convenience and security for Japanese travellers and other Asian tourists who prefer cashless payment channels. We believe this collaboration will enhance the appeal of Saudi as a destination for international visitors and support our vision of becoming a leading global tourism hub.”

The partnership with JCB should unlock various opportunities for cooperation between Saudi and Japan. Notably, Japan is one of the 57 countries eligible for Saudi’s e-visa and visa-on-arrival, with special benefits such as a free one-night hotel stay for tourists flying onwards on the national airline SAUDIA as part of Saudi’s 96-hour Stopover Visa programme.

Other initiatives include the Japanese language VisitSaudi.ja portal featuring joint marketing campaigns with leading travel trade partners to promote the country to Japanese holidaymakers. They can take advantage of special hotel offers from local destination management companies (DMC) and tap attractive holiday deals, inviting them to discover the true home of Arabia on their terms.

JCB International resident and CEO Yoshiki Kaneko expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership: “This is a great chance for us to promote exciting travel experiences to Saudi for our cardmembers. Like Japan, Saudi is a unique destination, with fascinating nature, culture and history.”

He added, “We’ve been working closely with the leading local banks in Saudi such as SNB, Alinma Bank, Riyad Bank, ANB, and Bank Al Jazira on merchant and ATM enablement to ensure JCB’s 154 million card members enjoy a seamless experience in Saudi.”

This partnership signifies an important step in enhancing tourism, facilitating travel, and fostering greater cultural exchange between Saudi and Japan.

About Saudi Tourism Authority

Saudi Tourism Authority (STA), established in June 2020, is responsible for marketing Saudi’s tourism destinations worldwide and developing the destination’s travel programmes, packages and business support. Its mandate includes developing the country’s assets and destinations, hosting and participating in industry events, and promoting Saudi’s destination brand locally and overseas. 

STA operates 16 representative offices worldwide, serving 38 countries. 

Find out more about Saudi’s tourism at the Visit Saudi website:

About JCB

JCB launched its card business in Japan in 1961 and, since 1981, expanded worldwide and established a network of 43 million merchants worldwide. JCB Cards are issued mainly in Asian countries and territories, with more than 154 million card members. 

(SOURCE: JCN Newswire)

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