Things to be aware of before starting a business in Saudi Arabia

A map of Saudi Arabia.

No matter where you are from, you can definitely start your own business in Saudi Arabia. But Saudi Arabia is a country like no other. The laws and culture are much different from what you are used to. That is why before starting a business in Saudi Arabia you should know some things and be aware of them. This is not only going to help you fit in much easier, but it is also going to help your business. Being familiar with Saudi Arabia’s culture is very important if you are thinking about starting a business there.

Always dress respectfully

If you are planning to have a business in Saudi Arabia, you always need to dress respectfully. Dressing casually won’t leave a good impression on people and business partners. You always want to be suited up. Showing that you take care of yourself means that you also take care of your business. It shows that you are responsible. Having a nice haircut all the time is also a big plus. Saudi Arabians are very distant from each other and that is why appearance plays a big role. So before starting a business in Saudi Arabia, make sure you do a lot of shopping.

A man with a tie.
Always dress smartly when doing business in Saudi Arabia.

Working days are different in Saudi Arabia

Before starting a business in Saudi Arabia you need to be aware of the fact that working days are different there. It is not a regular Monday to Friday working week. In Saudi Arabia, the workweek runs from Saturday through Wednesday. Most people do not work on Thursday, and there is no business conducted on Friday. Friday is considered to be the Muslim holy day. This is very important to know as at one point you are going to be employing people, scheduling meetings, etc.

A calendar.
You will have to adapt to the working days in Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia has a slow pace when it comes to business

One thing is certain, you’ll have to be very patient when it comes to doing business in Saudi Arabia. Even before shipping anything to Saudi Arabia, you must know and be ready to wait for a while. All business meetings start slowly with a lot of small talks. You must also always be sincere, honest, and respectful when it comes to doing business with people in Saudi Arabia. This is both going to help you maintain your status and your business’s status which is very important. You want to be known for the good things, not the bad ones.

Religion is a very important factor in Saudi Arabia

Daily life in Saudi Arabia is highly influenced by religion. When it is time to pray, everyone and everything stops working. It is just the way it is. Religion also has a profound influence on politics and business, and not just social behavior. This could be one of the things you didn’t know about life in the Middle East.

Written by Lisa Roberts