(ABS) – Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al Rabia, the Saudi minister in charge of Hajj and Umrah, has announced the withdrawal of quotas allocated to states before the pandemic and Covid-19, and the removal of age restrictions during the 2023 edition. The pilgrimage is planned for June.
This 2023 edition (1444 AH) will “eliminate the quotas and special conditions normally assigned to states before the emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic, especially those related to age,” he said at the opening of Expo Hajj in Makkah, an exhibition conference on Hajj and Umrah services.
In comments made in a press release, the Saudi minister announced the decision by his country’s authorities that “the insurance costs associated with Umrah will now be set at 88 riyals and the fees for the pilgrimage at 29 riyals.” ”.
Dr. Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al Rabia reminded the participants of the “enormous investments made by Saudi Arabia in the framework of the construction of infrastructure within the scope of the expansion of the Great Mosque of Mecca”.
The works, valued at “more than 200 billion riyals”, are “one of the largest construction projects in history”, he says.
The minister also assured that the “expansion works of the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah and the reconstruction projects of the Holy Parkours (Mouna, Arafat, Mostalifa) are continuing.”
According to the Saudi Haj and Umrah Minister, the age limits will be removed with the spread of Covid-19.
To better address the concerns of pilgrims and tour operators, Saudi authorities are planning to drastically reduce insurance premiums for Umrah applicants.
“As a result, fares will drop from 235 to 88 riyals, a reduction of 63%. On the part of candidates for the Hajj, the insurance cost will drop from 109 to 29 Riyals, a reduction of about 73%,” he said.
The minister argued that all these measures are concerned with making the quality of the Kingdom’s services more optimal, but also facilitate access to Islam’s holiest sites for visitors wishing to perform Umrah or Hajj.
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