There is a lot of confusion among the expatriates about their entitlement of ticket expenses in Saudi Arabia. They ask many a times if they are entitled to get an air ticket or not. Well, the answer of this question is not simple ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ because Saudi Labor Law does not provide this right directly to the expatriates that they can get an air ticket from the employer every year. Instead Saudi Labor Law deals with air ticket differently and we have explained it in the below paragraphs. It is important to mention here that we have already explained in detail the rights available to expatriates under Saudi Labor Law in this link “Rights of Expatriates under Saudi Labor Law”
Right of Air Ticket to come to Saudi Arabia for the First Time
Unfortunately, Saudi Labor Law does not talk about the air ticket in detail. According to Article 40 (1) of the Saudi Labor Law, every employer is responsible to bear the cost of air ticket to bring an expatriate to Saudi Arabia from his home country. So if a potential employer contacts you from Saudi Arabia and ask you to buy ticket yourself, you have every right to get reimbursement for that.
Right of Air Ticket to Native Country at Final Exit
Saudi Labor Law entitles every expatriate to an air ticket at the end of his employment term from the employer. But expatriate is entitled to the air ticket only if he is going on final exit. The employee has every right to ask for it and if he does not pay him this ticket, he can challenge the employer in the labor court. However, if the employee wants to transfer his sponsorship at the end of the employment term, he is not entitled to air ticket since he is not going back to his country.
Air Ticket in case of resignation before completing the contract
If you resign before completing the contract with the employer, the employer has the right to not to pay you for the air ticket. In fact, he can sue you in the labor office and ask for the compensation of termination of the contract. We have detailed the clauses of Saudi Labor Law in this regard in “FixedTerm and Indefinite Contract”
Air Ticket in case of Resignation or termination within probation period
Saudi Labor Law gives the right to employer and employee to check each other’s compatibility in the probation period. Rules regarding probation period under Saudi Labor Law have been explained in this link “Probation Rules under Saudi Labor Law”. If you resign within the probation period or employer terminates you as you are not fit for the required job, the employee will have to bear the cost of returning back to his home country as per Article 40 (2) of the Saudi Labor Law.
Right of Air Ticket on Vacation
Saudi Labor Law does not discuss the right of expatriates to have an air ticket on each vacation. However, it is stipulated in the contract between employee and employer. So you need to see this point in the contract before signing it. We have discussed the points you should consider before signing a contract in this link “Factors to Consider when Signing an Employment Contract in Saudi Arabia”. Generally, if you have signed a contract of 2 years with the employer and air ticket is not mentioned in the contract, you can ask for at least 42 days leave at the end of the contract along with an air ticket. However, it does not become a contractual obligation of the employer if it is not stated in the contract. Recommended: Leaves as per Saudi Labor Law has been explained in this link.