Pilgrims arrive in Saudi Arabia as Hajj Ministry completes preparations


:: The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah announced that pilgrims have started arriving in the Kingdom via land, air and sea ports.

On Sunday, 325 pilgrims arrived at King Abdul Aziz International Airport in Jeddah on the first Hajj flight from Pakistan, while three other Hajj flights from Pakistan arrived in Madinah with 651 pilgrims on board. More international flights followed.

The ministry began implementing plans adopted by Minister of Hajj and Umrah Mohammed Salih Bentin for this year’s Hajj season, which ensure all services will be provided to pilgrims from the time of their arrival in the Kingdom until departure at the end of their Hajj.

The minister urged all sectors operating under the ministry, religious institutions and the General Syndicate of Cars, to ensure implementation of ministry-approved plans and establish cooperation and coordination between all participating agencies.

The minister also instructed all Hajj service centers in Makkah and Madinah to intensify efforts and facilitate all operations concerning pilgrims. He also advised them to strengthen the role of monitoring committees in the field.

Pilgrims are expected to continue arriving in the Kingdom until the fifth day of Dhul Hijjah, with an expected 950,000 pilgrims arriving via King Abdul Aziz International Airport in Jeddah and 750,000 arriving at Prince Mohammed bin Abdul Aziz Airport in Madinah. Around 100,000 pilgrims will arrive by land and sea. Pilgrims from 178 countries are registered for this year’s Hajj season.

Moreover, Umrah travel operators from Riyadh will operate the last Umrah travel on Thursday.

A leading Umrah travel agent in the capital said that in view of the Hajj season, the regular coach service from the Riyadh to Makkah and Madinah will be suspended until the end of the Hajj season with the last run on Thursday. He also said that some travel operators wound up their Umrah operations last week.

The Umrah season reached its peak during the holy month of Ramadan which recorded nearly 3 million pilgrims from abroad and from the Kingdom during a 30-day period.

The regular five-day package to Makkah and Madinah is suspended till the Hajj is over, the agent said.













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