Self-registration of pilgrims’ biometrics begins in UK

Saturday, March 19, 2022

LONDON — The third phase of implementing the smart phone application service for self-registration of Umrah pilgrims’ biometrics has begun in the United Kingdom.

The launching ceremony of the application titled Saudi Visa Bio was held in the presence of deputy Saudi Ambassador to the UK Hassan Al-Gumaie.

Representatives of several Saudi ministries and government agencies also participated in the ceremony and these included the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, the Ministry of Tourism, the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, the Presidency of State Security, the National Cybersecurity Authority, and the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAYA), in addition to officials of a number of Hajj and Umrah offices.

The new service will enable the British applicants for Hajj and Umrah visas to register their biometrics from their countries after installing the Saudi Visa Bio application on their smartphones and hence they need not go to visa issuance centers.

The biometrics matching process will be carried out at the time of the pilgrims’ arrival at the land, sea and air ports in the Kingdom. This service is introduced in line with the directives of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman to offer the best possible services and facilities for the Hajj and Umrah pilgrims.

It is noteworthy that Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Faisal Bin Farhan launched on Oct. 6 the application for self-registration of the biometrics of Hajj and Umrah pilgrims through smartphones. With the launch of the new mechanism, Saudi Arabia has become the first country in the world that allows registration of biometrics via smart phones for the issuance of electronic visas.