Riyadh: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) has started receiving applications from companies wishing to obtain a license to serve overseas pilgrims during the 1445 Haj season, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.
The applications will be received until December 5 on the Saudi Ministry of Haj and Umrah’s website.
The ministry’s undersecretary for Haj affairs Ayed Algwinm indicated that the initiative aims to enhance competitiveness in providing excellent services to overseas pilgrims.
Algwinm emphasized the importance of specialized companies’ increased involvement in the sector for achieving ministry objectives and meeting the diverse needs and expectations of pilgrims.
The licensed companies offer range of services, including accommodation, meals, transportation, and addressing special needs of pilgrims.
The Haj pilgrimage to Makkah is a mandatory religious duty that must be performed by those Muslims who are physically and financially able to perform it at least once in a lifetime.
Haj 2024 visas will be issued from March 1 to April 29 and are expected to begin in mid-June. In 2023, the holy pilgrimage to Makkah attracted over 1.8 million worshippers, marking the largest number since the COVID-19 pandemic.