Saudi Arabia has begun issuing visas for Hajj 2024

by Catherine Carey | March 7, 2024
Kaaba Mecca during Hajj

From the 1st of March, Saudi Arabia is issuing Hajj visas to Muslim pilgrims. All muslims around the world can now apply for the Hajj visa and until April 29. You cannot travel for Hajj pilgrimage purposes with any other type of visa.

So far, Saudi authorities have already issued licenses for 1,860 buildings to accommodate pilgrims in Mecca. The number of buildings authorized to accommodate pilgrims could rise up to more than 5,000 since Mecca's deputy governor, Saud bin Meshal, has extended the deadline for landlords to apply for building licenses until May 8th. These buildings are expected to house around 1.2 million people.

The Hajj season will fall between June 14 and 19 and all muslim visitors must secure their Saudi Hajj visa through travel agents authorized by the Saudi Arabia Ministry of Hajj & Umrah.

The Hajj pilgrimage is one of the pillars of Islam and it is expected that all muslims make the holy pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in their life.

Who is eligible for the Hajj visa?

Applicants for the Hajj visa must meet these requirements: 

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • If you are under 18 years of age, you must apply for a Saudi Hajj visa with a parent or legal guardian.
  • Be of the Muslim faith.
  • You must have a confirmed return/onward airline ticket.
  • Meet these Hajj visa requirements:
    • Complete the Hajj & Umrah visa application form and apply through travel agents authorized by the Saudi Arabia Ministry of Hajj & Umrah.

    • Have a valid passport (it must be valid for at least 6 months from the date of application submission).

    • Present 1 recent color photo. 

    • Have a health certificate confirming you have been vaccinated against Meningococcal Meningitis and COVID-19. It must be issued at least 10 days before and less than 3 years prior to entry into Saudi Arabia, valid for at least 3 years. Depending on nationality, age, and health status, additional vaccinations such as yellow fever, polio, and influenza may also be mandatory.

    • Women and children must be accompanied by a husband or father, Mahram, when traveling to Saudi Arabia, and Mahram must provide proof of relationship (marriage or birth certificate are accepted).If you are a woman older than 45 years old, you can perform Hajj without a guardian if you are part of a group and have the permission of your Mahram in a no-objection letter.

If you are a GCC citizen, although you can travel to Saudi Arabia without a visa, you must still get a Hajj visa.

How long can I stay in Saudi-Arabia with the Hajj visa? 

The Hajj visa only permits travel to Saudi Arabia for the purpose of pilgrimage during the Hajj period. You must depart Saudi Arabia after completing the Hajj and stay no longer than the 10th day of Muharram. The visa cannot be extended. Additionally, it is important to note that this visa cannot be used for work or residency purposes

What is the processing time for the Hajj visa?

These visas are usually processed in 5 days.