Offbeat

12 Saudi-Made Apps You Need To Download

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Saudi Arabia’s youth is eager, creative and wants change. Actually, Saudi Arabia has been embracing change so well that the country carries one of the highest densities of app users and is on the forefront of the social media scene in the Middle East.


Many Saudis have been part of some of the finest apps that the region has developed, and there are hordes of app development companies that operate in the country.

For many Saudis app development went from a hobby into an income generating machine. Many Saudi websites that have their own apps, but our focus is mostly on purpose built apps rather ones simply representing a successful business.

Dalily

dalilyA localized version of Truecaller, Dalily is considered to be amongst the best caller IDs in the Arab World. It also serves as a cross-platform messaging app. The app has been developed by the Riyadh-based software company e-Sealed.

Zahma O La

zahmaTranslated into “crowded or not”, the app initially started by focusing on one thing, that being announcing the traffic status of the King Fahd Causeway to Bahrain. It has now broadened its features, displaying movies playing in theatres in Bahrain.

Ayat

ayahOne of the most popular apps to emerge from Saudi Arabia, Ayat was developed by King Saud University. The app comes with tons of features including text translation of the meanings of the Quran in more than 20 languages and recitations of the Quran by many famous reciters amongst many other.

Karam Car

karamOne of the first fully Saudi taxi service company, Karam Car is based in Jeddah. Recently launched,  the app is picking up fast and offers similar services to Uber and Careem.

SnapJobs

snapjobsThe jobs app was developed by a group of six Saudi women. The app is an easy and fun solution to search for jobs, wherein job seekers have to post a video or audio of 30 seconds that will be accessible to employers.

Masareef

masareefThe money management app has been surprisingly successful. It manages your expenses and highlights how various expenses will affect your savings for the month.

Morni

morniEncountered a car breakdown? With this app, you can call for towing, battery service, tire change and fuel delivery across major locations in the country.

Saudi Driving Test

saudi-driving-testThe app is ideal for those planning to take the computer exam for the Saudi driving license. It gives test takers the essentials to ace the exam including a mock test, so one knows where they stand. Plus, it’s available in 9 languages.

Saudi Messenger

saudi-messengerSaudi Messenger allows users to meet new people when connected to the internet. But other than that it mostly offers similar features to other messaging apps.

Gas Delivery

gas-deliveryThe usage is pretty simple and allows users to purchase gas cylinders from the nearest distribution center, charing 10 Riyals for delivery. Payment by credit card is also acceptable.

Kashf Saher

kashf-saherThis Kashf Saher app reveals where the hidden speed cameras are located. However, Just an FYI, the app doesn’t encourage speeding, rather it encourages you to stay within the maximum speed limits.

Saudi Matches

saudi-matchesIf you’re a diehard follower of the Saudi football scene, then you definitely need this app. It covers the latest scores from the local leagues and cups, keeping you up to date with all the happenings in the local football scene.

My Prayer

my-prayerDeveloped by the King Abdulaziz City for Science & Technology, the app gives you location-based prayer timings. It comes loaded with other features to help you with your prayers such as determining Qibla directions, Hijri conversion dates, and azan alarms.

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Offbeat

7 Saudi Loyalty Cards You Need In Your Wallet

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While loyalty and membership programs/cards have been extremely successful in the West, countries in the Middle East are catching up to the trend fast. Saudi Arabia too has seen a slew of memberships being offered by companies.


In Saudi Arabia the most successful amongst these loyalty or membership programs have largely been limited to the airline industry with popular frequent flier programs. With more and more businesses realizing the importance of loyal customers, they are churning out new incentives to hold onto their loyal base.

Loyalty and membership cards may seem like a way to keep you addicted but if used wisely, they can actually help you save money in the long run. Just an FYI before we begin, the benefits listed for each are just the prominent value-added services one can expect from these loyalty cards/programs. We have filtered out most of the loyalty cards out there and kept only the most useful ones on this list.

Tawfeer

czzu8mzxaaalvsfPanda has been advertising their Tawfeer cards left, right and center. They are definitely one of the most valuable loyalty programs, as the card allows you to buy many products at discounted prices. In Panda, some items will carry two price tags one for regular customers and one for tawfeer card holders.On top of that, Panda is almost everywhere across the Kingdom, so you can be assured that you are definitely saving on your weekly grocery shopping.

Register here.

Shukran

Photo Credit: almrsal.com

Photo Credit: almrsal.com

The Shukran loyalty program is one of the largest of its kind in the Gulf. The card covers so many stores and brands that you’d definitely want to have in your wallet or on your phone through the Shukran app. Part of the Landmark group that comprises of Centrepoint, Max and Home Centre amongst others; accumulating points in the Shukran card allows you to redeem them for cash discounts off your purchases.

Register here.

Nuhdeek

bkedzjkcyaa0lxrNahdi pharmacy is second to none when it comes to overall reach of pharmacies across Saudi Arabia. So holding its membership card likewise makes sense, especially as points on the Nahdeek card allows for cash discounts. What’s more is that the Nuhdeek program is not limited to Nahdi pharmacy, it also covers Daan, Saudi, and Sudais pharmacies as well.

Register here.

NaSmiles

Photo Credit: 148apps.com

Photo Credit: 148apps.com

The loyalty program of Fly Nas is pretty simple – earn a Smile point for every riyal spent. Every 100 Smile points can be redeemed for 4 riyals. With Fly Nas being the only alternative to Saudia airlines, holding its loyalty card can sure come handy.

Register here.

Alfursan

Photo Credit: saudiairlines.com

Photo Credit: saudiairlines.com

Perhaps the most popular of all loyalty cards/programs, Alfursan leads the lot by a margin. With the Alfursan card, you’ll be earning miles for each time you travel with Saudia. These miles can then be redeemed for free flights and/or upgrades. Oh yes, and the card will also entitle you for extra baggage allowance as well.

Register here.

Budget Loyalty Card

392770_461133410633060_1068538598_nHaving one of the largest numbers of car rental outlets in the Gulf, the loyalty card allows you for discount within Saudi Arabia and abroad. Points are earned for each time a car is rented from Budget. For every SAR 100 spent one reward point is earned and the points accumulated are valid for life. Plus, the card allows you for discounts when you rent a car through Budget.

Register here.

Prism

cdmnprkw0aav_fdThe rewards program of Magrabi Opticals allows you to gain points on purchases and redeem them later once you accumulate 1000 points. For the basic Blue Prism card, 100 points are awarded for 100 SAR of purchases. 1000 points entitle you to a 50 SAR discount. The Prism card can be used across the Middle East.

To enroll visit your nearest Magrabi Opticals outlet.

One more thing, regardless of which mobile network you use, all major network providers have loyalty programs, which you can enroll in and expect tons of rewards. Some more rewarding than others. So be sure to enroll in them.

 

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Events & Happenings

These Are The International Celebs Attending The Saudi Comic Con

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The Saudi Comic Con scheduled to take place from the 16th to the 18th of February is all set to become one of the biggest entertainment events to happen in Jeddah’s recent history. The excitement surrounding it is roaring, from street signboards to social media – it’s trending everywhere.


Like other comic con events, the focus will be on comic book culture which will allow fans to meet Arab and international comic book creators, experts and stars.

A question relating to the Saudi Comic Con still lingers on many people’s minds. That being, who are the international celebrities that are expected to take part in the event? Well, we’ve got the answer for you here.

Julian Glover (Feb. 16)

Photo Credit: digitalspy.com

Photo Credit: digitalspy.com

Glover has played many iconic characters in his long career. He is the only actor to appear in the Star Wars, James Bond and Indiana Jones film franchises, wherein he portrayed a negative role. The 81-year-old British actor will be on his first ever visit to the Kingdom.

Giancarlo Esposito (Feb. 17)

Photo Credit: heroichollywood.com

Photo Credit: heroichollywood.com

A regular at the Comic Con, Esposito is best known for starring as drug baron Gustavo “Gus” Fring in Breaking Bad and its spin-off Better Call Saul. His notable films include Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man, The Usual Suspects and King of New York. He is part of the DC Universe and has starred in its original animated series “Son of Batman” and “Batman: Assault on Arkham”.

Mads Mikkelsen (Feb. 18)

Photo Credit: metro.co.uk

Photo Credit: metro.co.uk

After starring in the international hit “Doctor Strange” last year, the Danish actor has finally become associated with the Marvel Universe after being the industry for almost two decades. He is best known for his roles in the critically acclaimed “The Hunt”, “Casino Royal” and more recently the hit series “Hannibal” in which he played the titular character.

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Travel Trends

8 Amazing Short-Haul Honeymoon Destinations From Saudi Arabia

Photo Credit: dreamingofmaldives.com

Saudi Arabia owing to its central location has multiple diverse destinations on short-haul flights ranging from picturesque snow-clad mountains to idyllic tropical islands, all within a 6 hour journey radius.  So for those who have honeymoon plans lined up or know anyone who is planning to go on one, then this is what you need. Plus, short-haul in most cases means lesser airfare. You can rather spend the savings from it on upscaling your lodging to a more private or romantic one.


Georgia

Photo Credit: holidayme.com

Photo Credit: holidayme.com

Though there aren’t any direct flights to this country up in the Caucasus as of yet, it is however connected by national airlines of other GCC countries and even a few low-cost carriers.  Georgia is fast becoming a favorite amongst Saudi travelers, with a culture that is a mix of the west and the east, splendid architecture and picturesque mountains landscapes, there is no reason why it shouldn’t be.

Mauritius

Photo Credit: thomson.co.uk

Photo Credit: thomson.co.uk

The idyllic island calmly sits in the vast Indian Ocean. If you are looking for a tropical adventure with plentiful jungle trekking and safari options then you will find it difficult to find any other place close by boosting of such. And just one more thing, actually two more; the beaches and food are drool worthy as well.

Northern Cyprus

Photo Credit: intertravel.com.tr

Photo Credit: intertravel.com.tr

Though the only way to enter the country is via Turkey, its easy visa policy of allowing on arrival visa to citizens of most countries makes it ideal for those who have not pre-planned their trip. The island sitting in the middle of the Mediterranean has an amazing gastronomical experience in store for visitors that is heavily influenced by Turkish cuisine. Being a majority Muslim country, mosques aren’t hard to find as well. 

Turkey

Photo Credit: toplisttips.com

Photo Credit: toplisttips.com

Rich history, natural beauty and pristine beaches, Turkey is the full combo. No matter what your or your spouse’s interests are, this surely will be the place that one cannot just say no to. It has something for all kinds of honeymooners. Multiple airports in Turkey are connected by direct flights from Saudi Arabia.

Sri Lanka

Photo Credit: tax.thomsonreuters.com

Photo Credit: tax.thomsonreuters.com

After years of civil war the country is now witnessing a tourism boom. A fairy-tale like island for many, Sri Lanka offers similar beaches to those of Maldives and Mauritius but at lower prices. What’s an additional plus that Sri Lanka has over the former two is the rock fortress of Sigiriya that stands in the heart of the country. Sigiriya serves as the poster boy for Sri Lankan tourism.

Ethiopia

Photo Credit: edition.cnn.com

Photo Credit: edition.cnn.com

While Saudi Arabia is flooded with coffee beans from the landlocked country, visitors to it will be able to visit the farms where these coffee beans are grown. Ethiopia offers many tour programs catered to honeymooners some even include lodging in the midst of national parks. With an air travel time of just 3-4 hours depending on where you start from in Saudi Arabia, Ethiopia won’t even give you the chance to jetlag, so you can start enjoying your honeymoon from day 1.

Egypt

Photo Credit: egypt.travel

Photo Credit: egypt.travel

Egypt needs no introductions, for decades its colossal historic relics and of late its beaches have managed to bring in droves of tourists. Political instability or not, history lovers will always be found here (albeit in lesser numbers). With the situation in the country now relatively stable, the country is waiting for tourists with its arms wide open. Egypt is ideal for honeymooners who have an inkling towards history. Since the tourist arrivals are not as many as they were used to, you may get the undivided attention of staff and have some of the less-famous historic monuments to yourselves.

Maldives

Photo Credit: dreamingofmaldives.com

Photo Credit: dreamingofmaldives.com

Get the perfect combination of sun, sea and sand all while you enjoy. Maldives being a Muslim country will leave you with no worries of wondering whether your food is halal or not. One of the best places to get pampered all while you take in the beautiful views of the sea from your private water bungalow, a favorite amongst honeymooners. And in you haven’t started scuba diving then this is the place that will make you fall in love with the sport.

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Offbeat

10 Most Followed Saudi Twitter Accounts

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With Saudi Arabia having some of the highest number of social media users it is not a surprise that many Saudis have followers running into the millions. Some of them even have huge followings on Twitter across the Arab World and are not just limited to Saudi Arabia.  


But who amongst them have the highest following? To get the answers for that we turned to Social Bakers and the results are quite interesting. See for yourself!

 10. King Salman Bin Abdulaziz

salman@KingSalman

Starting off the list we have the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman. His first tweet after being announced King was one of the most retweeted tweets in Twitter history.

9. Abdulrahman Bin Musad

abdul@abdulrahman

The Saudi Arabian – French businessman is famous for being the former president of Hilal F.C. During his tenure as president, Hilal F.C. has won the Saudi league title twice. Abdulrahman bin Abdulaziz is also a prominent member of the royal family.

8. Dr. Tariq Al Habeeb

tareg@Talhabeeb

Famous psychiatrist Dr. Tariq Al Habeeb is on the 8th spot with a following of close to 6.5 million on Twitter.  He appears regularly on talk shows and is known for his works on religion and their effect on mental health.

7. Hashtag Saudia

hash@HashKSA

The account covers the latest trending hashtags in addition to loads of other viral-worthy stuff related to Saudi Arabia.

6. Akhbar Saudia

saudi@SaudiNews50

Following this account alone should suffice for being up to date with the latest news from around the country.

5. Sabq

sab@sabqorg

It is one of the most popular online news websites in the Arab World and regularly features in the top 5 of the most visited sites in Saudi Arabia. It was founded in 2007 and its popularity swelled soon after for bringing a breath of fresh air in the cluttered news industry.

4. Salman Al Oudah

salmann@salman_alodah

He heads the Arabic edition of the Islamic website Islam Today and appears on a number of TV shows. He is a noted author and has penned over 50 books. Salman Al Oudah is one of the most prominent clerics in the Muslim world.

3. Aid Al Qarnee

aayed@Dr_alqarnee

Saudi scholars have some of the biggest followings on social media and Al Qarnee is amongst the top cream. His self-help book titled ‘Don’t Be Sad’ has been a bestseller and has been acclaimed by Muslims and non-Muslims alike.

2. Ahmad Al Shugairi

ahmad@shugairi

He was formerly the most followed Saudi on Twitter. He became uber famous for his show Khawatir that met with huge critical and commercial acclaim in the country. Emirati magazine Twenty Youth (Magalet Shabab 20) placed him first in its list of the most influential people in the Arab world. Al Shugairi has amassed over a whopping 16 million followers on Twitter. 

1. Mohamed Al Arefe

moh@MohamadAlarefe

He is one of the most followed Islamic scholars in the Arab World and has a huge Facebook following as well with over 16 million likes on Facebook. The scholar is known for his amazing oratory skills and has also written a bestseller titled ‘Enjoy Your Life’.

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Explore KSA, Historic Saudi, Offbeat, Travel Around Saudi

The Most Iconic Saudi Photos

Photo Credit:  media.npr.org

Not all these photos were shot in Saudi Arabia, but they all have a strong connection to the country and that’s why they have made it here. These photos are not only famous locally but internationally as well. Some of these will probably be remembered for years to come.


President Roosevelt and King Abdulaziz photographed. It marked the beginning of Saudi – US relations.

President

Photo Credit: businesswire.com

A column of military vehicles of the Royal Saudi Land Force travels along a channel cleared of mines during Operation Desert Storm.

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

Hadi Al Somaily on his way to winning a silver medal for the country. The only one so far.

Photo Credit: arabscoach.com

Photo Credit: arabscoach.com

The well that changed the fortunes of the country. Dammam Well no.7

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

The Saudi Arabian delegation at a meeting in Baghdad in 1960. The meeting lead to the formation of the OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Companies).

Photo Credit: assets.geoexpro.com

Photo Credit: assets.geoexpro.com

GCC was formed in 1981, Abu Dhabi. Here is a photo of the heads of states.

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

This photo captures the vast desert of Rub Al Khali in the south western part of the Kingdom. It was published by the National Geographic.

Photo Credit: ngm.nationalgeographic.com

Photo Credit: ngm.nationalgeographic.com

Shot during the opening ceremony of the King Abdullah Sports City – a ceremony unlike any other ever conducted in the Kingdom before.

Photo Credit: actlightingdesign.com

Photo Credit: actlightingdesign.com

Published by the CNN, the photo captures the first Saudi female athlete, Sarah Attar, competing at the 2012 London Olympics.

Photo Credit: edition.cnn.com

Photo Credit: edition.cnn.com

The booming construction business photographed in 2013.

Photo Credit: arabianbusiness.com

Photo Credit: arabianbusiness.com

National day celebration starts being celebrated with much fervor.

Photo Credit: 1.bp.blogspot.com

Photo Credit: 1.bp.blogspot.com

The photo was published by the BBC soon after Makkah went live for the first time on Snapchat.

Photo Credit: bbc.com

Photo Credit: bbc.com

This is what happened across America after the Saudi Arabia led oil embargo in 1973. The embargo made the prices of oil quadruple.

Photo Credit: media.npr.org

Photo Credit: media.npr.org

The Mashair Raliway connecting the cities of Mina, Arafat and Muzdalifah is rolled out.

Photo Credit: phys.org

Photo Credit: phys.org

The Saudi – Iraq border

Photo Credit: constructionweekonline.com

Photo Credit: constructionweekonline.com

Raha  Moharrak the first Saudi woman to scale Mt. Everest. Here’s a photo of her waving the Saudi flag atop the summit.

Photo Credit: akhbarek.com

Photo Credit: akhbarek.com

A Saudi woman casts her ballot at a polling center during the historic 2015 municipal elections.

Photo Credit: aljazeera.com

Photo Credit: aljazeera.com

One of the more candid moments of the founder of the country, King Abdulaziz.

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

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Spirituality

14 Lesser-Known Facts About Masjid An Nabawi

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Masjid An Nabawi holds a special place in the hearts of all Muslims. Today the mosque has expanded so much that it has not only incorporated the Prophet’s living quarters but a good portion of the original settlement in Madinah as well. Being one of the holiest sites in Islam, Muslims congregate to it in the millions.


The mosque has seen so many expansion and renovation projects over the years, coming a long way from its humble beginnings to the gilded doors and marble floors that it has today. Despite all the changes, there are deep-rooted things about Masjid An Nabawi that its seemingly ordinary inner structures carry.

Here are some:

Photo Credit: wikipedia.org

Photo Credit: wikipedia.org

1. In 1909, the mosque was the first place in Arabia to have electricity.

By some accounts, the Ottoman Sultan whose realm extended to Madinah didn’t have electricity fully installed in his own palace prior to this time.

1426622. The current mosque is more than 100 times the size of the original structure.

Carrying a total capacity of close to 1 million people.

1688933. It is also the 2nd largest mosque in the world.

With further expansion plans underway.

Photo Credit: alkabbah.com

Photo Credit: alkabbah.com

4. Masjid An Nabawi contains an older section within it.

This is the part that has been built by the Ottomans and is on the southern end of the mosque. It is characterized by its unique pillars and heavy elements of Ottoman architecture in its design.

Photo Credit: el-emarat.com

Photo Credit: el-emarat.com

5. The initial mosque built by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ took 8 months to build.

The Prophet ﷺ himself contributed to the heavy work of the construction.

Photo Credit: el-emarat.com2

Photo Credit: el-emarat.com2

6. Much of it was roofless at that time.

And the mosque faced Jerusalem, as that was the qiblah during the early years of Islam.

Photo Credit: youm7.com

Photo Credit: youm7.com

7. The room of Fatima (R.A.) is still inside the mosque.

Items belonging to the Prophet ﷺ were housed in the room. However, when Madinah was under siege during World War 1, the Ottoman Commander had many artifacts transported to Istanbul. Many of these artifacts can be seen in the Topkapi Palace today.

Photo Credit: benaa.org

Photo Credit: benaa.org

8. The Riad Ul Jannah extends till the hujra (inner chamber) of the Prophet ﷺ.

The total measurements of the Riad Ul Jannah is 22 meters in length and 15 meters in width.

Photo Credit: nmisr.com

Photo Credit: nmisr.com

9. There is an empty grave in the Prophet ﷺ’s room.

Some believe it to be meant for Prophet Isa (A.S).

Photo Credit: Abdul Safi

Photo Credit: Abdul Safi

10. The dome was constructed almost 650 years after the Prophet ﷺ’s burial.

By a Mamluk sultan in 1279 AD.

11. It was painted in numerous colors including white and purple before being painted in the beautiful green we see it today.

The dome was painted green around 150 years ago by the Ottomans.

12. There is another dome inside the green dome.

It is an inner dome that is not visible from the outside.

Photo Credit: taibanet.net

Photo Credit: taibanet.net

13. Masjid An Nabawi has multiple mihrabs (prayer niche).

The first is the mihrab where the Prophet ﷺ used to pray, covering the area that the Prophet ﷺ leads prayers from. Then, there is Sulemanye mihrab that was made on the orders of Sultan Suleyman. The third mihrab is where the current imam leads his prayers amongst others that were made for the different madhabs.

14. The function of the Suffah

In the northern side of the mosque, a separate space was made for the homeless and travelers. The dwellers of the Suffah became known as the Ahab Al Suffah which roughly translates as the Suffah fraternity. The Suffah today is marked by the raised platform near the Riad Ul Jannah.

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Business

Not Many Are Aware Of The Full Forms Behind These Saudi Brand Names

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Many brands in the country today are recognized just by their acronyms. The result? People almost always don’t know what the acronyms really mean. 


Read on to see if you know any of these!

SACO     

Saudi Company for Hardware

ARAMCO

Arabian-American Oil Company

SAMBA

The Saudi American Bank

SASCO 

Saudi Automotive Services Co.

SIPCHEM

Saudi International Petrochemical Company

SABIC

Saudi Arabia Basic Industries Corporation

NADEC

National Agricultural Development Company

MA’ADEN

Saudi Arabian Mining Co.

SADAFCO

Saudia Dairy & Foodstuff Company

STC 

Saudi Telecom Company

SAPTCO 

Saudi Public Transport Company              

MBC 

Middle East Broadcasting Center

SWCC

Saline Water Conversion Corporation

SAICO   

Saudi Arabian Cooperative Insurance

SABB

The Saudi British Bank

UCA       

United Cooperative Assurance Co.

NAPCO

National Paper Products Company

CEPCO

Civil and Electrical Projects Contracting

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Business

Why You Need To Do A Summer Internship

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While there are only a handful of companies in Saudi Arabia open to employing interns, which they mostly do explicitly as part of their CSR initiatives, landing an internship job is not the easiest of tasks. Most companies are yet to adapt to the concept and the ones that do offer internships limit them to around 2 months. But once you land one, you’ll realize how important and valuable it is. And if the realization does not hit you now, it will in the years to come.  


  • Getting Into Colleges

Whether you are already in college or are planning for further studies, your internship is definitely a strong point you’d want to list on your application. It does make you stand out and being associated with an established company is an added bonus.

  • Networking

There will be loads of people to meet, from co-workers to clients to managers. The major perk of being associated with industry professionals is that it will help you in some way further down your career.

  • Chances Of Full-Time Employment

Many a times, companies hire intern candidates for full-time positions, either after the internship period has ended or upon completion of their college course. Your employers may make you do rigorous work and boring tasks but avoid shying away from such tasks as this is your chance to prove your worth.

  • Increased Marketability

Finding a new job is tough and for a fresher who’s just out of college, the journey is even tougher. Having an internship does distinguish you from other freshers out there and a letter of recommendation from a well-known previous employer is an additional benefit.

  • Learn Real World Problems

You’ll gain exposure to on-the-job problems and issues that are perhaps not found in college classrooms.

  • Earn A Stipend

Most MNC’s in Saudi Arabia do offer a stipend for your internship. Though it will not be much, grouped along with the benefits listed above it sure is worthwhile.

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Explore KSA, Historic Saudi, Online Magazine

Tabuk – A Historical Saga

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Of mysteries, chronicles and bygone times.


As strange as it may sound, the city of Tabuk was originally called Taboo. At that time, it was a small oasis town with a history dating back to 1500 BC. Many pre-Islamic poets make mention of a famous mountain in Tabuk called Hasmi in their poetry.

Almost 1,000 years after its founding, the town became part of the state of Al Ayaneyean and then flourished. The city is also speculated to be part of the Nabatean Kingdom, which is famous for its construction at Madain Saleh and Petra.

However, the town dwelled into obscurity and not much was written about it for the centuries that followed right from the turn of the millennium until Islam dawned in Arabia. The Battle of Tabuk, which is actually a misnomer as no battle actually took place, was more of an expedition that managed to display the strength of the Muslim forces to the Byzantine vassals.Screen-Shot-2017-01-01-at-12.02.25-PM

The expedition was successful for the Muslims and Tabuk again became well-known and was integrated in the growing Muslim Empire. A mosque where Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) prayed during the expedition still exists in Tabuk to this very day.

For the years that followed, many pilgrims passed through the city of Tabuk, which was now seen as a gateway to and from Northern Arabia. The flow of pilgrims intensified with the arrival of the Hijaz Railway and the city became an important stop on the railway line. Many historic structures left behind by the Ottomans mark some of the most visited touristic sites in the city.

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