Hajj Requirements: (updated annually)
The Consular Section of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington DC has the honor to inform all Pilgrims that it will start issuing Hajj visas, which are granted gratis, from Mid-Shawwal until 29th Dhu Al-Qudah of each year. Hajj visas are not valid for work or residency.
You can also find additional information in the Guide to Hajj (in 8 languages)
Each applicant for a Hajj visa must apply through a licensed U.S. travel agency, which must present the Consulate with copies of “Accommodation Contacts” and a letter from the Ministry of Hajj in Saudi Arabia confirming that the travel agency has duly completed all requirements to qualify to assist pilgrims.
All agencies handling Hajj visa applications are required to fill out and sign a contract issued by the Ministry of Hajj before submitting the passports to the Embassy for Hajj visas. The contract details the rights and obligations of the agency and the pilgrim. The agency is to keep a copy of the signed contract for their records in case the Embassy needs to refer to it at any time. The signed contract is a pre-requisite for obtaining a Hajj visa, and failure to obtain it or breaching any of its terms will be regarded as fraud against the pilgrim and will result in withdrawing the privilege of the agency to handle Hajj visas. Service Contract Between the Hajj and Organizers of International Hajjis
The contact information for authorities in Saudi Arabia that deal with complaints from Pilgrims and Umrah performers:
Applications for Hajj visa will not be considered if the following requirements are not met:
- The applicant must have a passport with a validity of at least six (6) months and acceptable both for entry to Saudi Arabia and entry to the next destination; the passport should have at least two empty visa pages adjacent to each other.
- Each applicant must submit one (1) recent passport size color photograph with a white background. The photograph must be a full-face view in which the visa applicant is facing the camera directly. Side or angled views are NOT accepted.
- A completed application form filled-out with black ink or printed; the form must be signed and stamped by the authorized travel agency.
- The Mahram should write his complete information on the application forms of his spouse and children or any relative with whom he is traveling. He should also provide copies of marriage or birth certificates; if these documents were issued outside the US, he should then provide copies translated and notarized by a certified translation office.
- All women are required to travel for Hajj with a Mahram. Proof of kinship must be submitted with the application form. Women over the age of forty-five (45) may travel without a Mahram with an organized group, They must, however submits a no objection letter from her husband, son or brother authorizing her to travel for Hajj with the named group. This letter should be notarized.
- The applicant must be in possession of a non-refundable roundtrip ticket with confirmed reservations.
- The applicant must submit proof of vaccination for meningitis and ACYW135. For infants and children up to fifteen (15) years of age, a vaccination report is required for polio as well as meningitis and polio. Children over fifteen (15) years of age should present the same vaccinations requested for adults.
a. meningitis and ACYW135.
b. The seasonal (or common) flu, which should be taken two weeks before applying for the visa.
c. The H1N1 flu, if a vaccine is made available before Hajj season, and should be taken two weeks before
applying for the visa.
d. Infants and children up to fifteen (15) years of age should provide a vaccination report for meningococcal and polio.
e. Children above fifteen (15) years of age should present the same vaccinations requested for adults.
f. Health experts advise the following groups to postpone their plans for Hajj and Omrah this year for their
own safety: The elderly, the terminally ill, pregnant women, and children.
- Each pilgrim should submit two certified checks or cashier checks payable to "Unified Agents Office" in Jeddah for pilgrimage services. These checks should include the name and the passport number of the pilgrim. Each applicant must pay the following fees:
(a) US $158.40 (one hundred fifty-eight dollars & forty cents) for services rendered by the local Tawaf agencies and for housing at the Holy sites.
(b) US $116.00 (one hundred sixteen dollars) for air-conditioned transportation services.
Pilgrims have the option to submit one check combining both fees: in this case, the amount would be US $274.40 (two hundred seventy-four dollars & forty cents).
Children between the ages of seven (7) and fifteen (15) should only pay half of the above-mentioned amount.
Children under the age of seven (7) do not need to pay.
- Non-U.S. citizens should submit a copy of their green card or othert proof of legal residence status in the US. Passport authorities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia reserve the right to return (at his or her own expense) any pilgrim who has provided wrong or false information about their residence in the US at his or her expense.
- No minor (under 18 years of age) will be granted a Hajj visa if not accompanied by his family. Minors travelling one parent must submit a notrized letter of authorization, in either in Arabic or English, signed by both parents or legal guardians.
- If the applicant has converted to Islam, an Islamic certificate must be presented; this needs to be notarized by an Islamic Center.
- Travelers must carry vaccination certificates with them for inspection by the Saudi Authority at port of entry.
- No food products are allowed into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
- The last day to enter King Abdulaziz Airport in Jeddah for the purpose of Hajj is 4 Dhu Al-Hijjah of each year.
- Upon arrival, pilgrims shall hand their passports to the "Unified Agents Office" representatives to enable the latter to complete all travel formalities to Makkah and Madinah.
- In the event that pilgrims lose their passport, they should immediately report the loss to the same office appointed to take care of them during Hajj. Applicants must obtain a report from the office of the Unified Agents in which the loss of passport is mentioned.
- If pilgrims should lose their passport, they should immediately report the loss to the same office appointed to take care of them during Hajj. Applicantsmust obtain a report from the office of the Unified Agents in wihc the loss of the passport is mentiond.
- All pilgrims must leave the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia after Hajj no later than the 10th of Muharram of each year. The rules and regulations of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia forbid any pilgrims from staying in the country after the completion of Hajj.
Hajj Baggage Allowance Regulations:
- The Ministry of Hajj would like to stress the important to adhere to the baggage restrictions on all pilgrims arriving and departing the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia:
- Maximum baggage weight: 32 kg [70lbs]
- Maximum size: 56x45x25cm [20x17.7x9.8in].
- Excess baggage must be shipped. Authorized Hajj cargo service centers have been established in Makkah and at King Abdulaziz International Airport support services area.
General Guidelines for travel Agencies:
- Travel agents must provide the consulate with Residence, Tawaf, and transportation contracts. They also must provide the unified contract that verifies the general services provided to pilgrims. This contact must include the name of the organizer, the code given to them by the Ministry of Hajj, and the number of visas they are allowed to get. They also must provide the consulate with a letter from the Ministry of Hajj office in Makkah. All these documents should arrive at the consulate before hajj visas are issued.
- Passports will be returned if the information submitted is not compatible with the information sent electronically by the Ministry of Hajj. The Embassy reserves the right to inform the Ministry of Hajj about travel agencies that submit inaccurate or incomplete information.
- Travel agencies should affix on each passport a sticker showing the agency’s name, address and telephone number.
- In the case that a travel agency wishes to submit any question or complaints to the Ministry of Hajj, they may do so through the company or agency they deal with in Saudi Arabia or through the official routes in their country.
- Pilgrims exchange establishments are urged to declare all currencies in their possession and to exchange currencies only through authorized currency exchange establishments.
Visitors of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia shall abide by the country’s Islamic laws and regulations and respect its society’s values and traditions. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia anti-drug trafficking laws are strictly enforced. Violators are subject to severe punishment, which may include the death penalty. Sectarian, political or religious gatherings are forbidden.
The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, DC
takes this opportunity to wish all pilgrims a happy Hajj and a safe return.