Requirements of Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims

Updated on Feb 13, 2024 | Saudi e-Visa

This article serves as a comprehensive resource, providing valuable information about the Hajj pilgrimage and outlining the essential requirements for obtaining a Saudi eVisa for Hajj or pilgrim visa in Saudi Arabia for foreigners.

Every year, approximately 2 million individuals embark on the sacred journey of Hajj in Saudi Arabia. Muslims from around the world who wish to participate in this pilgrimage are required to obtain a specific visa known as the Hajj visa or Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims.

Saudi Visa Online is an electronic travel authorization or travel permit to visit Saudi Arabia for a period of time upto 30 days for travel or business purposes. International visitors must have a Saudi e-Visa to be able to visit Saudi Arabia . Foreign citizens can apply for an Saudi e-Visa Application in a matter of minutes. Saudi Visa Application process is automated, simple, and completely online.

The Significance of Hajj: A Sacred Pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia

Hajj is a momentous and sacred Muslims make a pilgrimage to the holy and pious very important and city of Mecca, situated in Saudi Arabia. It holds a paramount position as one of the Five Pillars of Islam.

The Obligation of Hajj

Muslims who possess both the physical and financial capabilities are obliged to embark on the Hajj pilgrimage at least once in their lifetime. This profound journey represents a significant spiritual milestone for believers.

Distinguishing Hajj from Umrah

It is crucial to differentiate between Hajj and Umrah. While Hajj is a mandatory pilgrimage, Umrah is an optional and lesser pilgrimage to Mecca. Both hold immense importance, but the obligations and rituals associated with each vary.

The Hajj visa and the Umrah visa are two distinct forms of Saudi Arabian visas that are offered for religious travel, in addition to the new electronic visa for visitors. Yet to make the Umrah pilgrimage easier, the new tourist eVisa can also be employed. Learn more at Saudi Arabia Umrah Visa.

The Rituals of the Hajj Pilgrimage: A Journey of Spiritual Observances

The Hajj pilgrimage encompasses a week-long period during which millions of individuals gather in Mecca to fulfill a series of sacred rituals. Participants engage in the following significant observances:

  • Tawaf: Walking Anti-Clockwise around the Kaaba

Pilgrims perform the Tawaf by circumambulating the Kaaba, the sacred structure at the heart of the Grand Mosque in Mecca. They complete seven rounds in an anti-clockwise direction as an expression of devotion and unity.

  • Sa'i: Walking between Safa and Marwah

Between the great hills of Safa and Marwah, while walking symbolizes the actions of Hagar, the wife of Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham). Pilgrims retrace her footsteps, completing seven rounds as they reflect on her resilience and faith.

  • Drinking from the Zamzam Well

Pilgrims partake in the blessed waters of the Zamzam Well, which holds deep historical and spiritual significance. It is thought to have provided a supply of sustenance provided by Allah to Hagar and her son Ismael.

  • Standing Vigil on the Plains of Mount Arafat

The pinnacle of Hajj is reached as participants gather on the plains of Mount Arafat. It is here that they engage in supplication, reflection, and seek forgiveness, standing in earnest prayer from noon until sunset.

  • Overnight Stay in the Plains of Muzdalifa

After leaving Mount Arafat, pilgrims spend the night in the open plains of Muzdalifa, engaging in prayers and collecting pebbles for the upcoming ritual.

  • Symbolic Stoning of the Devil

Participants engage in the ritual of symbolic stoning, where they cast pebbles at pillars representing Satan's temptation. This action symbolizes the rejection of evil and the steadfast commitment to righteousness.

  • Attire and Prohibited Activities:

Throughout the pilgrimage, men are dressed in white garments known as Ihram, signifying equality, and purity. Women also dress modestly in white attire. Pilgrims must abstain from prohibited actions, including cutting nails and shaving, as they dedicate themselves entirely to the sacred journey.

Citizens of 51 countries are eligible for Saudi Visa. The Saudi Visa eligbility must be met to obtain the visa to travel to Saudi Arabia. A valid passport is required for entry into Saudi Arabia. Learn more at Eligible Countries for Online Saudi Visa.

The Timing of the Hajj Pilgrimage: A Once-in-a-Lifetime Journey

Muslims are required to fulfill the obligation of Hajj at least once in their lifetime. This sacred pilgrimage takes place in Saudi Arabia once a year, specifically during the last month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Apply for simple process here for Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims on this website.

Hajj commences on the 8th day and concludes on the 12th day of Dhu al-Hijjah, one of the months in the Islamic calendar. It's crucial to remember that the dates of Hajj vary each year due to the difference in length between the lunar calendar and the Gregorian calendar.

Issuance of Hajj Visas:

Hajj visas are granted to pilgrims during a specific timeframe. The issuance of these visas takes place from Mid-Shawwal to the 25th of Dhual-Qa’dah, allowing individuals to prepare for their journey and make the necessary arrangements to participate in this significant event.

The Saudi Arabia visa application is quick and simple to complete. Applicants must provide their contact information, itinerary, and passport information and answer several security-related questions. Learn more at Saudi Arabia Visa Application.

Saudi eVisa for Hajj PilgrimsSaudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims Requirement: Distinct from Tourist eVisas

It is important to note that pilgrims intending to perform Hajj in Saudi Arabia cannot utilize a tourist eVisa for this purpose. Instead, they must acquire a dedicated Hajj visa,i.e., the  Saudi eVisa Hajj for Pilgrims which is specifically designed to facilitate their entry into the country and participation in the pilgrimage to Mecca.

Tourist eVisas for Saudi Arabia are applicable for activities related to Umrah, the optional 'lesser pilgrimage.' However, it is very important and crucial to understand that these eVisas do not grant access during the designated Hajj season.

Obtaining a Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims: Application Process and Travel Agency Assistance

To apply for a Hajj visa for Saudi Arabia, or a Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims prospective travelers can initiate the process by contacting the nearest Saudi Arabian Consulate or Embassy in their country of residence. These diplomatic missions serve as the primary point of contact for visa applications related to the Hajj pilgrimage.

Alternatively, many pilgrims opt to organize their Hajj journey through licensed travel agencies. These agencies specialize in facilitating the entire pilgrimage experience, including securing the necessary visas, arranging accommodations, and providing additional services as required. Working and taking suggestions from a reputable travel agency can help streamline the visa application process and ensure compliance with all Hajj requirements.

It is extremely important to note and keep in mind that due to the significant demand for Hajj visas and the limited capacity for pilgrims, it is advisable to start with the application process well in advance of the desired travel dates. This allows for ample time to complete all necessary paperwork and fulfill any additional requirements specified by the Saudi Arabian authorities. Apply online for Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims.

Saudi e-Visa is a required travel authorization for travelers visiting Saudi Arabia for tourism purposes. This online process for Electronic Travel Authorisation for Saudi Arabia was implemented from 2019 by Saudi Government, with the goal of enabling any of the future eligible travelers to apply for an Electronic Visa to Saudi Arabia. Learn more at Saudi Visa Online.

Essential Requirements for Hajj Visa Application or the Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims

To apply for a Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims, must gather the following essential documents and fulfill specific requirements:

  • Valid Passport:

Applicants must possess a passport with a minimum period validity of six months from the intended date of travel. It is crucial to ensure the passport is in good condition and has blank pages for visa issuance.

  • Recent Passport Photograph:

A recent, colored passport-sized photograph that meets the specifications set by the Saudi Arabian authorities is required. The photograph should have a clear and unobstructed view of the applicant's face.

  • Completed Application Form:

Applicants need to complete the designated Hajj visa application form accurately and provide all the requested information. This form is typically available through the Saudi Arabian Consulate or Embassy or provided by the travel agency.

  • Return Travel Tickets:

Proof of confirmed return travel tickets must be presented to demonstrate the intention to depart Saudi Arabia upon completion of the pilgrimage. This is an important requirement for visa processing.

  • Vaccination Certificates:

Pilgrims are required to present valid vaccination certificates, particularly for diseases like meningitis and yellow fever. These certificates serve as a precautionary measure to safeguard public health during the Hajj season.

  • Payment for Pilgrimage Services:

Applicants should be prepared to provide checks or other accepted methods of payment to cover the costs associated with the pilgrimage services. These expenses typically include accommodation, transportation, and other arrangements provided by the licensed travel agency.

Unless you are a national of one of the four nations (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, or the UAE) free from visa requirements, you must show your passport to enter Saudi Arabia. You must first register for the eVisa online for your passport to be approved. Learn more at Saudi Arabia Visa Requirements.

Hajj Visa Requirements for Women and Children: Accompaniment and Documentation

Requirements for Women:

Accompaniment by a Mahram:

Women planning to undertake the Hajj pilgrimage must be accompanied by a Mahram, a close male relative such as a husband, brother, or father. They need to travel together or arrange to meet upon arrival in Saudi Arabia. Proof of the relationship, such as marriage certificates or birth certificates, should be provided to establish the familial connection.

Exception for Women over 45:

Women aged 45 and above have the option to travel for Hajj without a Mahram but as part of an organized group. In such cases, a written consent letter from the Mahram granting permission for the woman's journey must be provided.

Requirements for Children:

Inclusion in the Visa Application:

Children who will be accompanying their parents on the Hajj pilgrimage should be included in the visa application. Their names need to be mentioned, and their details provided as part of the overall application process.

Birth Certificate Documentation:

A copy of the child's birth certificate should be submitted along with the visa application. This document serves as proof of the child's identity and establishes their relationship with the accompanying parents.

Accompaniment by a Mahram:

Children, regardless of age, should be accompanied by a Mahram during the Hajj pilgrimage. The Mahram, as a close male relative, is responsible for the child's well-being and safety throughout the journey.

With the advent of the online Saudi Arabia visa, travel to Saudi Arabia is set to become significantly simpler. Before visiting Saudi Arabia, tourists are urged to familiarize themselves with the local way of life and learn about any potential gaffes that might land them in hot water. Learn more at Saudi Arabia Laws for Tourists.

Entry Requirements for Hajj in Saudi Arabia: Passport,Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims, and COVID-19 Considerations

To travel to Saudi Arabia for the noble purpose and intention of of performing Hajj, individuals must comply with the country's entry requirements. These include the following:

  • Valid Passport:

Foreigners are required to possess a passport that remains valid for a time period of minimum of six months after the proposed date of arrival in Saudi Arabia. It is extremely essential to ensure that the passport is in good condition and has sufficient blank pages for visa stamps.

  • Hajj Visa for Saudi Arabia:

Obtaining a Hajj visa specifically designed for Saudi Arabia is a mandatory requirement for pilgrims. The visa is granted to individuals who meet the necessary criteria and have successfully completed the application process through the Saudi Arabian Consulate, Embassy, or licensed travel agency.

  • COVID-19 Considerations:

Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial for travelers to stay informed and updated about the latest entry requirements and any specific protocols implemented by Saudi Arabia.

Requirements for Foreign Muslims to Perform Hajj: COVID-19 Restrictions and Eligibility

Performing Hajj as a foreign Muslim requires meeting specific requirements, which have been influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic. The following information outlines the considerations for participating in the annual pilgrimage:

  • Hajj Participation Limitations in 2021:

Hajj 2021 experienced restrictions due to COVID-19. As a result, Muslims from outside the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia were unable to partake in the pilgrimage. The count of participants was limited to 60,000 individuals, consisting of Saudi Arabian citizens and residents. This measure aimed to ensure reduced capacity and facilitate social distancing during the pilgrimage.

  • Age and Health Requirements:

Participants in the limited Hajj were required to be in a good state of physical health and fall within the age range of 18 to 65 years old. These eligibility criteria aimed to prioritize the well-being and safety of the pilgrims, considering the potential health risks associated with COVID-19.

Travellers can skip lengthy lines at the border by applying for a Saudi Arabia eVisa before travel. A visa on arrival (VOA) is available to nationals of certain nations in Saudi Arabia. There are many options for international tourists to Saudi Arabia to receive travel authorisation. Learn more at Saudi Arabia Visa On Arrival.

COVID-19 Health Requirements for Hajj 2022: Anticipated Updates and Vaccination Measures

In preparation for Hajj 2022, plans are being developed to implement specific COVID-19 health requirements. Although formal announcements have yet to be made, it is expected that these measures will include the introduction of digital health cards and vaccination requirements.

  • Digital Health Cards:

To enhance safety and mitigate the risk of COVID-19 transmission, the implementation of digital health cards is anticipated for Hajj 2022. These digital cards may serve as a means of verifying individuals' health status, including vaccination records and COVID-19 test results. Further details regarding the process and requirements will be provided by the relevant authorities in due course.

  • Vaccination Requirements:

As the global vaccination efforts continue, it is likely that Hajj 2022 will incorporate vaccination requirements for participants. The specific details regarding the accepted vaccines, dosage schedules, and timelines will be announced closer to the pilgrimage season. The aim is to ensure the safety and well-being of all pilgrims by reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmission during the religious gathering.

It is extremely important to note that Saudi Arabia has recently opened its borders to vaccinated tourists who wish to perform Umrah outside of the Hajj season. This opportunity allows individuals to apply for a Saudi eVisa and engage in the lesser pilgrimage experience. The requirements for Umrah and the eVisa application process should be carefully reviewed and adhered to by prospective travelers.

Online Saudi Arabia tourist visas are available for leisure and tourism, not for employment, education, or business. You can quickly apply for a Saudi Arabia tourist visa online if your nation is one that Saudi Arabia accepts for tourist visas. Learn more at Saudi Arabia Tourist Visa.

Insurance Policy Requirements for Foreign Pilgrims Participating in Hajj

The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah has implemented a new requirement for foreign pilgrims participating in Hajj. It is now mandatory for these pilgrims to have insurance coverage specifically for COVID-19, with a minimum coverage amount of SAR 650,000.

  • Coverage Details:

The insurance policy for foreign pilgrims is designed to provide comprehensive coverage in case of any COVID-19-related treatment, emergencies, or quarantine expenses. This coverage ensures that pilgrims have access to necessary medical services and support during their time in Saudi Arabia.

  • Approval by Saudi Central Bank:

To meet the required standards and ensure the validity of the insurance coverage, the policy must be approved by the Saudi Central Bank. This step ensures that the insurance policy meets the necessary criteria and provides the essential coverage specified by the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Saudi E-Visa. Get answers to the most common questions about the requirements, important information and documents required to travel to Saudi Arabia. Learn more at Frequently Asked Questions for Saudi E-Visa.

Participation in Hajj Restricted to Muslims: Non-Muslims' Exclusion and Conversion Verification

Hajj, as well as Umrah, is exclusively designated for Muslims, and non-Muslims are not permitted to partake in these religious pilgrimages. Additionally, non-Muslims are prohibited from entering or traversing through the sacred city of Mecca.

  • Verification of Conversion for Saudi eVisa for Hajj Pilgrims Applicants:

For individuals who have recently converted to Islam and seek to apply for a Hajj visa, additional documentation is required to verify their conversion status. This documentation typically involves obtaining a certificate or testimonial from an imam or a recognized Muslim religious leader. The purpose of this verification process is to ensure that the individual is a genuine convert to Islam.

By upholding these regulations, the sanctity and significance of Hajj as a fundamental pillar of Islamic faith are preserved, allowing devout Muslims to engage in this sacred pilgrimage. It is essential for non-Muslims to respect these religious protocols and recognize the exclusive nature of Hajj and Umrah for followers of Islam.

Learn about next steps, after you have successfully applied for Saudi e-Visa. Learn more at After you apply for Saudi Visa Online: Next steps.

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