The United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will soon set up facilities at Riyadh and Jeddah airports to process U.S.-bound passengers’ arrival documents before landing in the U.S., the Saudi Gazette reports, citing a person with knowledge of the situation who spoke with the Okaz Arabic daily.
Long delays and extra screenings have become standard for Saudis entering the United States, particularly after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Flights from Jeddah or Riyadh can top 12 hours or more in travel time, making customs procedures upon arrival to the United States frustrating for many.
Under the new system, on reaching the US, passengers will be treated as domestic arrivals, which allows faster processing at their arrival airport.
Currently, Abu Dhabi International Airport is one of only a handful of airports in the world that offers the CBP facility. 600,000 people used the US pre-clearance facility at AUH in 2015, Arabian Business estimates.