JEDDAH — The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah announced that institutional quarantine is not required for foreign Umrah pilgrims, who took two doses of coronavirus vaccines approved in Saudi Arabia. Such pilgrims will be allowed to directly start performing Umrah without the need to comply with the condition of institutional quarantine.
The ministry clarified that the period of stay inside the Kingdom for pilgrims coming from outside Saudi Arabia will be 30 days. Before the outbreak of coronavirus, the period of Umrah for foreign pilgrims was 30 days. But it was reduced to 10 days when foreign pilgrims were allowed to come during the third phase of the lifting of the temporary suspension of Umrah service on Nov. 1, 2020.
All pilgrims aged 18 and above from outside the Kingdom will be granted permit to enter Saudi Arabia and perform Umrah. This is in line with the terms and conditions set by the Ministry of Health. As for domestic pilgrims, all those aged 12 and above will be allowed to perform Umrah.
The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah clarified that the requirements for foreign pilgrims to come to the Kingdom to perform Umrah from the countries, which are not facing travel ban, without any institutional quarantine is inoculation with two doses of vaccines against coronavirus approved by the Kingdom. However, 3-day institutional quarantine is required for foreign pilgrims who are immunized with two doses of vaccines approved by the World Health Organization (WHO). Such pilgrims have to carry out PCR laboratory test after 48 hours of institutional quarantine, and will be allowed to perform Umrah directly if they submit a negative PCR certificate.
It is noteworthy that Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman recently issued an order to allow using the full capacity of the Grand Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque for pilgrims and worshipers. Subsequently, the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah and the Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques have geared up to accommodate maximum number of domestic and foreign pilgrims and worshippers at the Two Holy Mosques.
The ministry has canceled the maximum age limit of 50 years as a prerequisite for pilgrims coming to perform Umrah from outside Saudi Arabia. Earlier, the ministry had set the age limit of the minimum 18 years and maximum 50 years to book an appointment and issue permit to perform Umrah, as well as prayer at the Grand Mosque and Al-Rawdah Sharif at the Prophet’s Mosque and visit the Prophet’s grave following the easing of restrictions that were imposed since the outbreak of coronavirus.
The ministry recently launched the service of issuing permits for Umrah as well as for access to the Grand Mosque in Makkah and the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah for those coming from outside the Kingdom through the Eatmarna and Tawakkalna applications that are uploaded on the smartphones of the pilgrims. While social distancing measures were lifted, pilgrims were still required to wear face masks and make reservations to perform Umrah and prayers in order to verify their immunity status at the entrances of the Two Holy Mosques.
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