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Conditions for travelers for Pilgrimage to Makkah (Hajj)

The Ministry of Health has issued requirements for Hajj Season, as follows:
Yellow fever
Vaccination: All travelers arriving from countries known to be infected with yellow fever [(as shown in the WHO weekly Epidemiological
Record (WER)] must present a valid yellow fever vaccination certificate in accordance with the International Health Regulations. In the absence of such certificate, the person will be vaccinated upon arrival and placed under strict surveillance for 6 days from the day of vaccination or the last date of potential exposure to infection whichever is earlier. Health offices at entry points will be responsible for notifying the appropriate Director-General of Health Affairs, in the region about the place of residence of the visitor.
Disinfection: Airplanes and other means of transportation arriving from areas infected with yellow fever are requested to submit a certificate indicating disinfection in line with the International Health Regulations.
Meningoccal meningitis
All arrivals for the purpose of Umra or Hajj or for seasonal work are requested to produce a certificate of vaccination against meningoccal meningitis issued not more than 3 years and not less than 10 days before arrival in Saudi Arabia. The responsible authorities in the country from where the visitor comes must ensure that vaccination has been carried out as follows:
  • adults and children over the age of 2 years must be given 1 dose of the polyvalent (A,C,Y, 135) vaccine.
  • children between 3 months and 2 years of age must be given 2 doses of univalent A vaccine with a 3-month interval between the 2 doses.
Arrivals from countries in the African meningitis belt: It must be ensured that all visitors from these countries have been vaccinated in their countries, not more than 3 years and not less than 10 days before arrival. This should be documented on the vaccination certificate. Visitors from these countries will be checked at entry points to ensure that they are vaccinated. If the authenticity of the vaccination certificate is felt to be questionable, revaccination is to be carried out. Suspect cases shall be isolated and preventive measures will be taken in respect of their direct contacts. Chemoprophylaxis will be administered to all visitors from these countries to lower the carrier rate among them.
Visitors arriving for Hajj or Umra from the countries of the former USSR are requested to present a certificate for diphtheria vaccination.
They will also be given 1 dose of benzathine penicillin as follows:
  • 600,000 units for persons weighing less than 30 kg.
  • 1,200,000 units for adults and children weighing more than 30kg.
  • Those allergic to penicillin should, instead be given erythromycin, as follows:
  • adults: 1 g daily (divided equally into 4 doses) for 1 week.
  • children: 40 mg per kg body weight, daily (divided equally into 4 doses) for 1 week.
All vaccine certificates should be issued either in Arabic, English or French, in addition, a copy in the official language of the country of origin may be enclosed.
Epidemiological Surveillance
Tight control is exercised at entry points in respect of pilgrims and Umra visitors, and thorough surveillance shall be made in respect of visitors coming from countries infected with diseases subject to the International Health Regulations, in addition to isolation of suspect cases and surveillance of their contacts.
Food carried by visitors and pilgrims are banned from the country. Special rules apply for foods imported for commercial purposes.
Footnote: The publication in the WER is to inform visitors of the full requirements for entry into the country; it does not mean an endorsement by WHO of all measures stipulated. Saudi Arabia is enforcing these measures in accordance with the International Health Regulations (1969), Third annotated edition, Part VIII, article 84 which states "Migrants, nomads, seasonal workers or persons taking part in periodic mass congregations, and any ship, in particular small boats for international coastal traffic, aircraft, train, road vehicle or other means of transport carrying them, may be subjected to additional health measures conforming with the laws and regulations of each State concerned, and with any agreement concluded between any States.