Umrah pilgrims
Umrah pilgrims in the Grand Mosque. Image Credit: SPA file

Cairo: An official app set up by Saudi Arabia for booking to perform Umrah or minor pilgrimage shows no slots available for the rest of Ramadan, a Saudi newspaper has reported.

All days of Ramadan, including the last 10 days, appear in grey on the chart of the Nusuk app, meaning there is no room for any more reservations, Okaz added.

There was no immediate official comment.

Since Ramadan started on March 23, there have been large number of worshippers and Umrah pilgrims from inside and outside Saudi Arabia heading to the Grand Mosque, Islam’s holiest site in Mecca.

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Last week, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Hajj and Umrah announced the onset of reservations for performing Umrah in the last 10 days of Ramadan. Muslims wishing to make the reservations were asked to do this via the Nusuk app or Tawakalna Services.

Umrah at the Grand Mosque usually surges during the last 10 days of Ramadan, which marks the peak season of the minor pilgrimage that can be performed around the year.

The ministry had earlier said that only one Umrah is permitted during Ramadan to allow the largest possible numbers of Muslims to undertake the rites comfortably.

The platform enables Muslims wishing to undertake Umrah or visit the holy sites in Saudi Arabia to obtain the necessary visas and permits as well as to book related packages electronically.

Saudi Arabia expects the number of Umrah pilgrims to reach 9 million by the end of Ramadan.

Overseas applicants for the Umrah permits in Ramadan must have valid visas at the time of registration.

Saudi Arabia has in recent months unveiled a slew of facilities for Muslims wishing to come to the country to undertake Umrah. The facilities apply to Muslims holding different types of entry visas such as the personal, visit and tourism visas.

Millions of Muslims, who cannot afford the annual Hajj rituals physically or financially, annually flock to Saudi Arabia to perform Umrah.