Mail delivery & Post in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia including the WASEL system, the history and the Ministry of Post.
27 January 2014| Last updated on 11 December 2017
An efficient postal network now covers all the cities and villages of the Kingdom, with 478 main and 180 branch post offices. In 2006, 858.1 million pieces of post were handled by a network of governmental and private post offices. Saudi Post has evolved through two main phases. The first phase being the establishment of Saudi Arabia and the second the establishment of post by the late King Abdul Aziz bin Abdul Rahman Al-Saud.
WASEL is the optimal and fastest way to deliver all postal services to the homes of citizens and residents. We provide a unique postal address through our geographic information systems (GIS). We install the boxes at customer houses and deliver the keys free of charge for the life time of the box. – Resident post
The Ministry of Post, Telegraph and Telephone functioning under the brand name Saudi Post is a government operated postal system in Saudi Arabia; it is generally referred to within kingdom as "Bareed".
The establishment and development of Saudi Post
Saudi post has evolved through two main phases. The first phase being the establishment of Saudi Arabia and the second the establishment of post by the late King Abdul Aziz bin Abdul Rahman Al-Saud.
The First Stage:
Before King Abdul Aziz entered Riyadh in 1319H, some shop owners in Riyadh provided a volunteer postal service by placing white fabric bags at the Justice Square (Al-Safa). On each bag there was a name of a city or village. Senders used to put their letters in the appropriate bag and then these letters were sent on camels or donkeys to their destinations. Incoming mail was placed in designated places inside the shops and whoever had a letter had to come and collect it.
In Makkah Al-Mokarama and Jeddah, the mail used to be carried on camels and donkeys on journeys that took up to 14 hours. The post office consisted of a chief, his deputy, stamp seller, registered mail official and regular mail official who were operating the post office. The mail was being carried once or twice each month by camels to places like Laith, Jazan, Abha, Najran and other southern region cities. In Madinah, the mail used to be carried by camels to Jeddah. After the establishment of the railway between Madinah, Jeddah and Damascus, the mail used to be transported by train. Mail between Jeddah and Egypt used to be carried weekly by Italian, Egyptian and Indian ferry companies. The mail also used to be collected once a week between Jeddah and Port Sudan and once every twenty days to India.
The Second Stage:
After the unification of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the post witnessed significant developments that can be summarized as follows:
- Establishment of the Directorate of Postal Businesses in 1354H.
- Before 1373H the postal services were under the responsibility of Post, Telegraph and Telephone Department, and then the services were transferred to the Ministry of Transportation under the title of "Transportation Ministry - Agency of Wire, Wireless and Postal Affaires".
- Saudi post has joined the Universal Postal Union in 1348 e. (1929).
- The first Saudi postal stamp was issued in 1334 e.
- Saudi Arabia is the second Arab country to issue regular and memorial postal stamps.
- Since 1390 e, Saudi Post has witnessed quantitative and qualitative developments.
- The first independent budget for the Saudi Post was announced in 1392 e, after the formation of the general directorate of post.
- The Ministry of Post, Telegraph and Telephone was established by the Royal Order No 236/O in 8/10/1395 e.
- Express Mail Service (EMS) was launched in 8/10/1404 e.
The Third Stage:
Among the developments witnessed by Saudi Arabia, the Saudi Council of Ministers issued a decision on 29/3/1423H (10/6/2002) transferring the General Directorate of Post into a public corporation operating within the philosophy of the private sector. At the beginning of 1426 e, a number of steps were taken at Saudi Postal Corporation (SPC) such as establishing new departments, launching new services and announcing the new project of providing postal addresses and post delivery to business and residential areas.
With a panoramic view of the current fast-paced technological advancements, both on a global and internal level, the Saudi Post is undergoing a process of transformation towards electronic applications and the automation of postal operations in order to improve the quality of service and expedite it’s delivery. Furthermore, it is now possible for each customer to follow-up and track their consignment through the SPC e-site and to even know the exact date of its arrival. Today SPC is actively involved in developing postal technology as well as investing in network projects to connect all postal centers across the kingdom. It is also expanding and enhancing automatic mail sorting and e-reading of messages at all its sites. The provided services are:
Changing the Post Office into a host of Businesses and Services
Saudi Post Electronic Network
Electronic Information Exchange
E-Boxes and Auto Vehicles
Mail Dispatch Management System
Postal Automation Appartus & Points of Sale Project
Delivery With E-Stamp