Visit visa for Umrah within 24hrs: Saudi minister...

Visit visa for Umrah within 24hrs: Saudi minister

 International Desk

 Published: 01:18 PM, 3 June 2022   Updated: 04:07 PM, 3 June 2022

Pilgrims performing Umrah; File Photo

Pilgrims performing Umrah; File Photo

The Saudi Arabia government has announced changes to existing rules for performing the holy Umrah. From now on, Pilgrims will not need the help of any agency to perform Umrah. Anyone can apply online in person. A visit visa will be issued within 24 hours of application.

Saudi Arabia’s state-run media, the Saudi Gazette, said in a report on Thursday, citing Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah.

The report said the Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah on Thursday announced the launch of an “electronic service” for worshipers wishing to perform Umrah from outside Saudi Arabia. The electronic service was announced for the Umrah visa application of mainly interested worshipers.

“From now on, a visit visa for Umrah would be issued within 24 hours of the application,” said the Saudi Minister of Hajj and Umrah.

Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah added that applications for Umrah visas can be submitted “in person” from outside Saudi Arabia. In his words, “The goal of Saudi Arabia’s Vision-2030 is to facilitate the reception in Saudi Arabia for a large number of worshipers who wish to perform Umrah.

Citing Saudi Arabia’s daily Okaz newspaper, Al Arabiya reported that Al-Rabiah said the visit visa for performing Umrah would now be extended to “three months” instead of one. 

Minister of Hajj and Umrah added that all worshipers who come to Saudi Arabia to perform Umrah will be able to travel to any part of Saudi Arabia without any hindrance.

Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah said 1 million people will perform Hajj this year. Of these, 85 percent or 850,000 are foreign pilgrims and 15 percent or 150,000 are domestic pilgrims from Saudi Arabia.

He added that the ministry and other concerned agencies are working to ensure the health of the pilgrims. 

Noting that the Hajj Smart Card will be implemented this year, he said the digital technology will help to organize this year’s Hajj more accurately.