The Saudi Consulate Section of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, DC would like to inform prospective Umrah applicants applicants to check with authorized Umrah travel agencies for the beginning and end of the annual Umrah seasons. Umrah visas are valid for 15 days and not valid for work or residence.
We would like to bring to all applicants’ attention that Umrah visas are granted gratis. Each applicant for an Umrah visa must apply through an authorized, licensed US travel agency. These agencies must have signed contract with Saudi companies or establishment to provide Umrah visas services. Umrah visas are not valid for work or residency.
- Umrah visas are provided free of charge.
- Umrah visas do not give the right to work or reside in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
- Each applicant for an Umrah visa must apply through a licensed U.S. travel agency, which must have signed a contract with a Saudi company or establishment to provide Umrah visa services.
Applications for Hajj visa will not be considered if the following requirements are not met:
1. 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.
2. 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.
3. A completed application form filled-out with black ink or printed; the form must be signed and stamped by the authorized travel agency.
4. 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.
5. All women are required to travel for Umrah 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 Umrah with the named group. This letter should be notarized.
6. The applicant must be in possession of a non-refundable roundtrip ticket with confirmed reservations.
7. 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 Umrah this year for their own safety:
The elderly, the terminally ill, pregnant women, and children.
8. Umrah visas will only be granted once the competent authorities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have approved the applicant’s request.
9. The validity of the Umrah visa is one month. The length of stay in the Kingdom will depend on the duration of the Umrah program chosen by the applicant.
10. Any applicant visiting the United States who has legally spent more than two (2) months in the United States country may apply for an Umrah visa through an authorized travel agency.
11. Minors (under 18 years of age) will not be granted an Umrah visa if not accompanied by their family and travelling with one parent must submit a notrized letter of authorization, in either in Arabic or English, signed by both parents or legal guardians.
12. If the applicant has converted to Islam, he/she should provide an Islamic certificate notarized by an Islamic Center.
For more information about licensed Saudi companies and different offers for performing Umrah and visiting Madinah, please visit the Ministry of Hajj’s website.
General Guidelines for Umrah Pilgrims:
- 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.
- Pilgrims will be authorized to visit any city besides the Holy Sites, if they request permission from the Authorized Saudi Passport Offices.
- Their travel agency should be informed of such intention. The travel agency should then provide and arrange for transportation.
- Umrah pilgrims should not overstay their visas.
- Umrah pilgrims are urged to declare all currencies in their possession and to exchange currencies only through authorized currency exchange establishments.
General Guidelines for Travel Agencies:
- Travel agencies must submit all contracts and financial guarantee letters before Umrah 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 applications.
- Travel agencies should affix on each passport a sticker showing the travel agency’s name, address and telephone number.
- The Ministry of Hajj will void Umrah visas if applicants do not submit applications within fifteen (15) days from the date of issuance of visa.
- Travel agencies must make sure that all Umrah pilgrims they send leave the Kingdom by 15 Shawwal of every year.
- If 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.
Visitors to 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’s 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.