Where to spend New Year’s Eve in Saudi Arabia

Where to spend New Year’s Eve in Saudi Arabia
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During the celebrations, food trucks, coffee stands, fashion and handicrafts will be on offer, as well as theatrical performances at many places across the Kingdom. (Photos/Supplied)
Where to spend New Year’s Eve in Saudi Arabia
2 / 3
During the celebrations, food trucks, coffee stands, fashion and handicrafts will be on offer, as well as theatrical performances at many places across the Kingdom. (Photos/Supplied)
Where to spend New Year’s Eve in Saudi Arabia
3 / 3
During the celebrations, food trucks, coffee stands, fashion and handicrafts will be on offer, as well as theatrical performances at many places across the Kingdom. (Photos/Supplied)
Updated 31 December 2018

Where to spend New Year’s Eve in Saudi Arabia

Where to spend New Year’s Eve in Saudi Arabia
  • A suspense-filled storyline will be narrated during a series of acrobatic performances, including tightrope walkers, swinging displays and synchronized acrobats
  • Alkhobar will embark on a five-day outdoor food and entertainment expo that will also begin on New Year’s Eve

JEDDAH: New Year’s Eve falls on a Monday this year, which is reason enough for jubilation. Thankfully for residents across the Kingdom looking for a bit of action, entertainment options are aplenty.
Western Sky Aviation in Jeddah will host a festival for families, which will include a fine arts section, a horror maze, a Hello Kitty-themed children’s corner and an Alice in Wonderland-themed theatrical play.
Food trucks and carnival treats will also be on offer throughout the night. This festival will run on Monday and Tuesday from 5 p.m. to midnight.
Along Jeddah’s waterfront, “X JED,” an outdoor concert-like event, will include live musical performances, light shows, a children’s play area and plenty of good food.
In addition, an internationally acclaimed circus act will perform at Jeddah’s Jungle Land Theme Park.
A suspense-filled storyline will be narrated during a series of acrobatic performances, including tightrope walkers, swinging displays and synchronized acrobats.
This show will be held on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day from 8:30 p.m. in Jeddah’s Mersal Village.
Riyadh’s street walk, meanwhile, will host an outdoor art festival in which visitors can marvel at the artistic accomplishments of talented local and international artists.
Talent shows will also run and artistic merchandise will be available for purchase, along with food and beverages, throughout the night.
Marine enthusiasts in Dammam can visit an aquarium that will showcase the marvels of the marine world at Dareen Mall on New Year’s Eve. Audio and visual guides will be available.
Neighboring Alkhobar will embark on a five-day outdoor food and entertainment expo that will also begin on New Year’s Eve.
Food trucks, coffee stands and fashion handicraft will be on offer at the festival, as well as a theatrical performance and traditional music stall.
Doors to the event open at 4 p.m. in Alkhobar’s main park along the corniche.
In Jeddah’s Khalediya district, singers will perform live at The Courtyard, while Ghazal cafe in Rawdah is hosting a week of live singing performances beginning from Monday.
Noor Al-Omar, Abdullah Al-Rifai and Mohammed Al-Sultan will perform on Monday, Sameh Al-Sadeq on Tuesday, Ammar Al-Shami on Wednesday, Zakaria Kharoub and Maher Al-Marstani on Thursday and Mohammed Bassam and Mishari Al-Hamad on Friday.
A Ghazal manager, Amro Mohammed, said singers would perform between 9 p.m. and 1:30 a.m. every night.
“Sameh Al-Sadeq will perform Levantine, Egyptian and Khaleeji music,” Mohammed told Arab News. “The musical atmosphere will be unique, as it offers both classical and modern music.”
Finally, the annual Winter Wonderland Festival at the Aja amusement park in Hail will include makeshift snow pits, an ice skating ring and live musical and theatrical performances, among other winter-themed activities. This event will also run on New Year’s Day from 4 p.m. onwards.


Fraudsters up their game, posing as bank officials on the phone in Saudi Arabia

Fraudsters up their game, posing as bank officials on the phone in Saudi Arabia
Vishing that occurs during a telephone call aims to provoke fear in the victim so that customers will be more susceptible to giving out personal, financial, or security details. (shutterstock)
Updated 18 January 2021

Fraudsters up their game, posing as bank officials on the phone in Saudi Arabia

Fraudsters up their game, posing as bank officials on the phone in Saudi Arabia
  • The Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) has warned bank customers, both citizens and expatriates, not to fall victim to financial frauds being perpetrated by scammers

JEDDAH: Fraudsters have developed a new scam, contacting residents in Saudi Arabia and pretending to be bank staffers requesting customer details.
A number of Arab News staff have received such calls in recent weeks. One caller spoke Urdu while two other callers posing as senior officials from the headquarters of the bank spoke in English and Arabic with a local accent.
They used phone numbers that appeared to be local numbers but upon calling back, the lines failed to connect.
The racketeers collect phone numbers of customers and ring them up, saying that their bank account or ATM card requires immediate updating. The scammers use the information provided to gain access to their bank accounts.
Speaking to Arab News, Talat Zaki Hafiz, secretary-general of the Media and Banking Awareness Committee of Saudi banks, said: “Saudi banks represented by the Media and Banking Awareness Committee have repeatedly warned bank customers not to react to stray phone calls of any kind coming from unknown sources that ask to update their banking record or personal information.” He further confirmed that banks do not request such information through phone calls or SMS messages.
Mohammed Khurram Khan, a professor of cybersecurity at the King Saud University in Riyadh, told Arab News: “Phishing, an online scam which targets users through emails where individuals are encouraged to click on a link that takes them to fraudulent sites, was troubling people. Now it’s a different kind of scam known as ‘vishing,’ over-the-phone phishing, where scammers persuade users to share their banking information by impersonating a bank official.”

HIGHLIGHT

The racketeers collect phone numbers of customers and ring them up, saying that their bank account or ATM card requires immediate updating. The scammers use the information provided to gain access to their bank accounts.

Vishing that occurs during a telephone call aims to provoke fear in the victim so that customers will be more susceptible to giving out personal, financial, or security details.
Sharing his experience Zafar Hasan, an e-learning consultant in Riyadh, said: “I received a call from someone on an unknown mobile number who introduced himself as a bank employee and told me that my ATM card was going to be blocked. It required an immediate update so I should give my Iqama number (residence permit number) and sixteen-digit ATM card number. I felt something was fishy, so I told him that I would go personally to the bank to update the card.”
The Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) has warned bank customers, both citizens and expatriates, not to fall victim to financial frauds being perpetrated by scammers.
SAMA called on bank customers to take information only from the official channels of the bodies regulating the Kingdom’s financial and investment sectors and inform the competent security authorities about such fraudulent attempts.