This guide was written for independent pilgrims. If you go with a group, follow the instructions of the group leader.

Picture of a bus The $274.40 bank draft, that you carry with you, covers the fee for the Guide and transportation. You have to make your own arrangements for residence.

It is better to buy Hajj essentials from your own city. In Muslim countries, all the required items, such as ihram, money belt, inflatable pillows, umbrellas and water thermos are sold separately or in sets. In Anarkali Lahore (Pakistan), Sh. Inayat Ullah has everything available. These things are also available in Jeddah, Madinah and Makkah.

Thongs In all holy places (Madinah, Makkah, Mina, Arafat and Muzdalifah), the recommended footwear are slippers (i.e., flip-flops, hawai chappal, etc.). This kind of footwear does not conceal the middle bone of the foot which is a requirement while in Ihram. When not in the state of ihram, you may wear sneakers, sandals or some other kind of comfortable shoes.

In Madinah, take your shoes in cloth bags inside Masjid-e-Nabvi and put them at the place provided on the side of an aisle. You almost always find your shoes at the same place, just tie something colorful to your bag for identification.

In Makkah, both inside or outside of Masjid-ul-Haraam, your shoes or belongings are usually lost. You may wear the shoe bag around your neck while circling Ka'bah. But it is better to leave your shoes outside the mosque even if you later find them missing. If this happens, instead of going home bare foot, you can buy another pair of slippers just outside the Haram.

Purchase haji mats to sit on or lie down wherever you want, they are specially useful for your overnight stay in Muzdalifah.

Dar al-Tahir In Madinah, accommodation is cheaper and other necessities of life are also slightly on the down side than those in Makkah.

Here we stayed at Dar-ul-Tahir which is close to Masjid-e-Nabvi. Rent: about 250 Riyals per person for 10 days. Three or 4 people share a room. One mattress on floor, gas stove and shared bathroom.

In Makkah, we stayed in a building on Shahrah Hijrat, not far from the Haram. Rent: 1000 Rials per person for the entire Hajj season. Here again, 3 or 4 persons in a room. One mattress on floor, racks to put luggage and utensils and shared kitchen with stove and refrigerator and bathroom.

Telephone There are calling centers both in Madinah and Makkah to make long distance phone calls. In Madinah, there are coin phones too, but they are hard to find. If you call from your or somebody else's residence, local calls are free.

Makkah Madinah
City Codes: 02 04
To call a friend in Makkah whose telephone No. is 5426923:

Country Code City Code for Makkah Telephone No.
00966 02 5426923

7. MIQAT (Station of Ihram)
People who go to Makkah from Madinah, go to Masjid-e-Miqat first, and wear ihram which is required for performing Umrah or Hajj.

Suppose you came to Makkah, performed Umrah and are now wearing ordinary clothes. Near Bab al-Umrah of al-Haram, take Bus # 2, 15, or 16 to Masjid-e-Umrah (Masjid-e-Aisha) to wear ihram for subsequent Umrahs.

Picture of ram For the animal sacrifice in Mina, the Government has centers in Madinah and Makkah where they collect cost of the ritual and give you the receipt. Insist sacrifice on the first day and ask for time. The sacrifice should be after stoning the pillar of Aqabah.

PIA plane We came by Pakistan International Airlines (PIA). The offices of this airline are both in Madinah and Makkah. But Makkah office is the one where you go to reconfirm seats for your departure. Find out the office of your airline and make sure to reconfirm your seat before departure to your country.

People are discouraged to fill out their thermoses with zamzam water from the coolers in Masjid-e-Nabvi and Masjid-ul-Haraam although many people do just the same. In Masjid-ul-Haraam, there is a special area where there are taps to fill out containers with the sacred water. But even this place is all the times crowded, so the best time to go there is 3 or 4 o' clock in the morning.

Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) allows to carry only 10 liter zamzam water per person, but at Jeddah they did not check it even if it was a 20 liter container.

Dollar bill There are money exchange points in Madinah and Makkah called Saraaf. Bank rates are a little higher. There is a bank near Masjid-e-Nabvi in Madinah and also near Masjid-ul-Haraam in Makkah.

While doing tawaf, beware of pickpockets. Travelers' checks are better than cash, keep check numbers in a separate place.

Although shopping of every kind during Hajj is not disallowed, yet the gifts consisting of prayer rugs, dates, tasbihs, etc., are bound to encourage holiness and benefit you in the world hereafter.

13. ALMS
It is very rewarding to give alms to the poor. But beware of the cheats. Some people seek your help saying they have lost all their money. They are mostly con artists preying upon your religious sentiments.

Laundry is available, but while in Makkah, you may buy a round plastic tub for 10 Riyals for washing small items. When leaving the country, just leave the tub in your residence.

In Madinah, taxis are available, 10 Riyals per person, for the visit to important religious places. At each stop, they allow reasonable time to visit the place and to offer 2 nafils if it is a mosque.

Jannat-ul-Baqee is adjacent to Masjid-e-Nabvi. You can visit the graves of sahaba karam whenever you want.

In Makkah, Mr. Afzal, the landlord, took us around in a large van for 10 Riyals per person. You can also go to close by sites on foot.

A cup of tea or a 12 oz. can of Coke or Pepsi is for 1 Riyal each. Dates are about 8 Riyals a kilo.
Food Food prices are reasonable. You can buy a dish of vegetables, meat, etc., and 3 breads (rotis) are provided free. One dish with breads is enough for 2 people. Roasted chickens are sold in full or in
halves and are not at all costly.
Food prices are higher in Mina because all the hajis are flocked together there and the merchants have to make special arrangements to make the foodstuff available.

In Arafat, they provide drinks and bags of food free.

When you leave Saudi Arabia via Jeddah airport, take with you some snacks, such as dates, cookies, dry fruit or sandwiches because everything costs several times more here.

Doctor's Bag Take with you only the essential medicines, free check ups and medicines are available in case you don't feel well.

Tunnels When Hajj is finished, many people walk on foot through tunnel from Mina to Makkah because it is a short cut and faster route than taking taxis or vans.

Masjid-e-Nabvi is wider and more beautiful than Masjid-ul-Haraam. The floor marble in both mosques is cool to touch. In the Prophet's mosque there are separate sections for men and women to offer prayers and separate hours to visit the Prophet's tomb. There are plenty of coolers filled with zamzam water for the benefit of everybody in both mosques.
Harmain Women visiting both mosques mostly don't wear burqas except Iranian women or those who work in the mosques at the gates. Some women sell merchandise on the sidewalks of the market clad in black burqas. In Masjid-ul-Haraam, due to a huge crowd, you may walk in front of people offering prayers. Also both men and women offer prayers in this mosque together, do tawaf around Ka'bah together and are in Safa and Marwah area together. But there is a separate entrance to zamzam well for men and women. By the way, men and women are also together in the tents in Mina, in the plain of Arafat, during the night in Muzdalifah and back in Mina where they stone three pillars representing the devil.
The bathroom and vudu areas are huge and multilevel with stairs and elevators. They are several in number and are separate for men and women.

Among a multitude of male strangers, women should try to perform all Hajj rites in a way that they don't unnecessarily mix with them. For example, they can do tawaf or sa'eey on a side or at night or at a time when there are less men.

While doing tawaf, you are tempted to touch, embrace or kiss the walls of Ka'bah. The authorities apply perfume to the walls, so that people refrain from doing such acts, as being in ihram they are supposed to stay away from perfume. You can still kiss Hajre Aswad ( the Black Stone).

Being not able to touch Ka'bah, should not make you worry so much. Although it is a house of God and the most sacred of all places, yet it is not God Himself. That is why a famous Urdu poet Ghalib called Ka'bah a direction for prayer (kibla numa):

Haey paray sarhadey adraak sey apna Masjood
Kibla ko ahley nazar kibla numa kehtey haein

For Fatwa of any kind or to find out if you have made any mistake and have to pay dum1, go to Madrisa Saulitia , only 5 or 6 minutes walk from Bab-ul-Umrah of al-Haram. They take money and will sacrifice animals for you and distribute them to the needy.

1A Dum is offering of a sacrifice as a penalty for a mistake during the perfomance of Hajj or Umrah.

We came from Lahore (Pakistan) to Jeddah wearing ihram intending to go to Makkah for Umrah and Hajj. But due to stormy weather, we were made to go to Madinah instead where we stayed for 10 days. We were told to slip into ordinary clothes.

Mistake No. 1, we broke ihram without performing Umrah or Hajj.

Mistake No. 2, before going to Makkah, we wore another ihram at Masjid-e- Miqat, Madinah. This is called ihram upon ihram because the first ihram should have been taken off after cutting the hair.

The third mistake is not performing the Hajj rites in proper order. For example, after coming from Muzdalifah, on the Day of Sacrifice, a pilgrim begins by throwing pebbles at the pillar of Aqabah, then offers his sacrifice, then shaves or clips his hair, and then makes tawaf of the Ka'bah followed by sa'eey. According to a Saudi publication "A Guide to Hajj, Umrah & Visiting the Prophet's Mosque", p.59, this order of doing things is preferable but not compulsory. On the other hand, the Mufti at Madrisa Saulitia, Makkah, considered changing this order a mistake requiring dum. The safe course of action is to follow the preferable order of things.

There are three ways of performing the Hajj:

It is advisable that before leaving for this sacred journey, memorize talbiyah, familiarize yourself with all the rites of Hajj and note down the order in which they are performed. For this purpose, it is beneficial to study a reputed book on the subject and also consult a religious scholar. After all Hajj is one obligation which, if performed correctly, gets rid of all your sins leaving you pure like a newborn baby.


If you don't have Real Player or have an old version of it, download the latest one free and click below to listen:


Allahumma Labbayk.
La shareeka laka.
Innal-hamda wan-n'imata
laka wal-mulk.
La shareeka lak."
( Here we come,
O Allah, here we come !
Here we come.
No partner have You.
Here we come!
Praise indeed, and blessings, are Yours---
the Kingdom too!
No partner have You! )


  1. Before entering Makkah, pilgrims wear two garments of ihram which are not sewn. Those who perform Hajj al-Tamatt'u, do Umrah first and slip into everyday clothes. Now for the Hajj, they put on ihram from their residence in Makkah.

    All pilgrims, in the state of ihram, are forbidden to cover their heads ( for men ), hunt, argue, cut their hair or nails, kill flies, mosquitoes and lice, use perfume, or engage in sexual relations. A woman may wear any dress for ihram as long as it does not show her adornments, or cause temptation to men. She is forbidden to wear gloves, apply mehndi or to cover her face, but if male strangers are around her, she should conceal her face with her head-covering or something similar making sure it does not touch her face.

    Within the precincts of al-Haram, no one, in the state of ihram or not, is allowed to cut trees, pluck vegetables or pick a lost property except for the sake of identifying it for its owner.

  2. At the Sacred Mosque, pilgrims make a greeting tawaf (tawaf al-qudum) - circling Ka'bah seven times. They then perform the sa'eey - making seven trips between the hills of Safa and Marwah, enclosed in a long gallery. It is the first tawaf after entering into Makkah and is sunnah for those who perform Hajj al-Ifrad or Hajj al-Qiran. It is not a sunnah for a pilgrim who comes to perform Hajj al-Tamatt'u or Umrah, or for the residents of the holy city of Makkah.

  3. On the eighth day of Zul-Hajj, pilgrims move to Mina for the essential final days of the Hajj.

  4. Next morning, they travel to Arafat for the pilgrimage's central ritual: the wuquf or the "standing". From noon until sunset, Muslims pray near the site of Prophet Muhammad's peace be upon him farewell sermon.

  5. At sundown, they go to Muzdalifah for the night and perform another wuquf.

  6. Returning to Mina for three days, pilgrims stone three pillars representing the devil. The sacrifice of animals and a post Arafat tawaf complete the Hajj.

  7. Before leaving Makkah, pilgrims again circle Ka'bah, which is called farewell tawaf ( tawaf al-wida).

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