Umrah visas cross 2-million mark

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Saudi Gazette report

JEDDAH — As many as 2,003,580 Umrah visas have been issued to prospective pilgrims from various countries since the current season started in September, the Ministry of Haj and Umrah said in its weekly statistical report.

The ministry said 1,187,608 of them already performed the minor pilgrimage and returned home while 331,531 pilgrims are currently in the two holy cities of Makkah and Madinah performing the rituals. It said 230,991 pilgrims are in Makkah and 100,540 pilgrims in Madinah.

Of the total 1,519,139 pilgrims who arrived in the country so far this season, 1,187,608 came by air, 125,016 by land and 72 by sea.

According to the ministry, with 465,193 visitors, Pakistan sent the largest number of Umrah pilgrims, followed by Indonesia with 279,507 pilgrims. India sent 224,586 pilgrims, Yemen 56,972, Malaysia 102,636, Yemen 76,826, Algeria 46,290, Turkey 41,579, Bangladesh 34,804 and Egypt 32,956.

The ministry a total of 9,047 Saudis, consisting of 7,523 men and 1,524 women are employed by the Haj and Umrah companies to serve the pilgrims.

It said its weekly statistical report is aimed at closely following the issuance of the Umrah visas and the arrival and departure of the pilgrims to ensure them with excellent services that will enable them do their rites in ease, peace and comfort within the ministry’s drive to realize the objectives of the Saudi Vision 2030, which aims to attract about 30 million Umrah pilgrims annually by that year.