Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Hajj and Umrah announced plans to start issuing electronic visas for pilgrims, allowing them to apply online and receive their visas within minutes.
The general supervisor of the electronic platform for Hajj and Umrah, Abdulrahman Shams, revealed that the portal will give non-Saudis online access to choose different service packages, and apply for their visas.
“Currently, pilgrims who are coming from outside the Kingdom are tied to Hajj and Umrah service-providing companies and agents in their countries. The electronic visas will now be issued to these entities who will be licensed to facilitate Hajj and Umrah in these countries,” Shams said in an interview with MBC.
Shams added that they are working closely with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Interior to make the process easier by issuing the visas without pilgrims having to send their passports to the embassy.
He said that if pilgrims input all their information correctly on the online portal, the visas “will be issued within minutes.”[source: Al Arabiya]