Planning a trip to Saudi Arabia should also include obtaining a visa. The state does not allow you to cross the border without a visa with the exception of nationals from visa-exempt countries. There are not many of them, so chances are you do indeed need a visa. However, there are plenty of solutions for that, and depending on your nationality, you can choose one of them.
This is currently the only way of getting a Saudi Arabia visa. If you plan on going there, you need to find the nearest Saudi diplomatic mission and go there to apply. The process is somewhat time-consuming, and you need to make quite an effort, but it is what it is, and you just have to go with it. Plenty of people have already done that. After you apply, you may wait some time for your visa to arrive, but it will be ready nonetheless. The system works. It may be a bit outdated, but it meets the purpose for which it was created.
This solution is a bit more elegant than the previous. Saudi Arabia has finally come through and agreed to issue electronic visas. The initiative was first brought up back in 2006, but now it will gain full effect. The bylaws are scheduled to be adopted at the end of April 2018, and travelers will have access to the online application system. However, not everyone will be allowed to apply for a Saudi Arabia e-visa. Only the citizens of 35 states are eligible. So, if you are from an eligible country, you can get your visa with just a 20-minute effort. To apply online for a Saudi Arabia e-visa, you can use the services rendered by iVisa. You can enjoy a comprehensible form, you have access to most visas, not only for Saudi Arabia, and the processing is one of the fastest you are going to find. Also, the fees are affordable. One benefit is that you have access to an excellent support service that is available 24/7. A consultant will take your call and guide you through the application process every step of the way. One thing worth mentioning is that the official guidelines for the Saudi Arabia e-visa are not released yet. We will know more at the end of April, but until then, all we know is that all applicants must be passport holders, and the passport needs to be valid for at least another 6 months from the date of departure. You should check iVisa.com for further developments. The Saudi Arabia e-visa is a better solution than going to a Saudi diplomatic mission, and when it goes live, many people will be happy to use the online application system. Hopefully, the list of eligible nationalities will expand in the future so that everyone can enjoy the same access to a Saudi Arabia e-visa as the current 35 nationalities.