Cairo: A varied package of services for domestic Muslim pilgrims in Saudi Arabia will be launched in the upcoming Hajj season and reservations are expected next week, a Saudi official has said.
Saudi Arabia said last month it would allow 1 million pilgrims from inside and outside the kingdom to perform this year’s Hajj due in July, after restricting the annual ritual to some thousands of Muslims living inside the country for the last two years due to COVID-19 outbreak.
The figure will include around 150,000 pilgrims residing in Saudi Arabia, according to Saed Al Juhani, the acting head of the Coordination Council for Domestic Pilgrims.
“Companies for domestic pilgrims will this year provide a varied package of services,” Al Juhani told Saudi TV Al Ekhbariya.
He explained that three specific packages will be available, namely: the towers in Mina package located seven kilometres from Mecca ; a package of developed tents similar to hotel rooms; and regular tents furnished with all services.
The open buffet service will also be revived after a suspension of two years due to pandemic-related restrictions, according to the official.
“Fresh meals provided for domestic pilgrims, citizens and residents, will be in line with the standards set by the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah,” he said.
Eligible pilgrims this year must be under 65, fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and present a negative PCR test, Saudi authorities have said.
Around 2.5 million Muslims from around the world used to attend Hajj in Saudi Arabia every year before the pandemic.