New e-system for Hajj and Umrah pilgrims’ departure from Saudi Arabia

RIYADH, About 30,000 Hajj pilgrims from abroad have started using an electronic system to complete their departure procedures automatically from their residences before reaching the airport.

The new system named ‘Return Initiative’ launched by the Saudi General Authority of Civil Aviation, GACA, will make a qualitative and historic leap in the services for the pilgrims, according to the Saudi Press Agency, SPA.

The pilot phase of the system is serving the pilgrims departing for Indonesia, India, and Malaysia from King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah and Prince Mohammed bin Abdulaziz International Airport in Madinah, said GACA President Abdul Hadi bin Ahmed Al-Mansouri. This service will be extended to all Hajj and Umrah pilgrims traveling through the Kingdom’s airports in future, he said.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation, WHO, has congratulated Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Health for successfully hosting the hajj season 1440 AH without a single public health event or disease outbreak being reported among pilgrims performing the hajj. In addition, WHO expressed its deep appreciation to all the health care heroes and volunteers for their dedication in providing healthcare services to around 2.5 million pilgrims.

The WHO had deployed a team of experts to support the Saudi Ministry of Health to ensure public health preparedness measures and prevent any potential disease outbreaks, the SPA report said.

Source: Emirates News Agency