Information for Travellers During COVID-19

Umrah Essentials : A Complete Checklist For First-Time Pilgrims


Each year, Muslims from across the globe undertake the spiritual journey of Umrah to the holy city of Makkah. Known to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, this beautiful and sacred journey should be performed without any hassle or tension. The first step for this is to prepare a packing guide and checklist of Umrah essentials well in advance. From reservations to essentials for Umrah – planning beforehand is the right way to make it successful.

There are plenty of necessary items, which are required on this umrah trip to the house of Allah. Not everyone can have clarity and complete understanding of how to prepare and what to pack for Umrah. To help you put together an Umrah essentials list, here’s a quick umrah guide checklist of necessary items that’ll make your experience memorable and comfortable.

Umrah Essentials Guide

For a pilgrimage, apart from being physically fit, one needs to be mentally relaxed too. Therefore, it is best to organise everything before embarking on the beautiful journey of Umrah. Below is a comprehensive guide of indispensable items required for the Umrah journey.

1. Travel documents: Keep them on top while packing essentials for Umrah

Important travel documents include:

  • Passport and its photocopies
  • Visa
  • Flight tickets
  • Vaccination certificates
  • Hotel booking confirmation copies
  • Receipts of payments made for Umrah
  • Passport size photographs
  • Relationship certificate (in case, you are travelling with your spouse)
  • Saudi Riyals
  • Debit/Credit card
  • Travel itinerary
  • Emergency contact numbers

2. Prayer essentials for Umrah: Clothes & footwear for key rituals

Ihram is the dress code for the Umrah pilgrimage, which is why packing suitable clothing is one of the most important things to do before the commencement of the journey. For men and women, Ihram is two pieces of unstitched plain white cloth. Women are also allowed to wear regular clothing, which conceals the entire body with only hands and face uncovered.

While planning the Umrah pilgrimage, packing the pocket Quran is of great importance too. This is because, during spare time, one can easily read the holy book. Also, there are a number of pocket-sized dua books available that contain prayers from the Quran and Sunnah, which can be recited during the journey. Furthermore, while changing flights or moving from one place to another, pilgrims can keep themselves occupied in Dhikr: remembrance of Allah, which makes packing Tasbeeh beads absolutely significant. Some other essentials for Umrah include a prayer mat, compass for the Qibla and Umrah guide book.

3. Clothing and accessories: Pick them based on travel time & weather

People come to Makkah to perform Umrah from different parts of the world. Usually, that includes long flight and road travel which can be tiring. Therefore it is important to wear and pack clothes that are light in weight and super comfortable. Another important factor to consider is the weather in Makkah. Even though Makkah is hot most of the year, it is important to pack and prepare according to the month of travel. Choose light colours and breathable fabrics that would not irritate your skin even in scorching heat.

In Saudi Arabia, it is advised to dress conservatively so as to not hurt the cultural sentiments of the locals. Men usually wear formal clothes – shirt and trousers, while women prefer to wear salwar kameez or abaya.

For both men and women, some key essentials for Umrah include two or three pairs of comfortable shoes, waist pouch, bathroom slippers, string bag, light jumper, sunglasses, safety pins, prayer hat and folding umbrella. Apart from the above-mentioned items, there are some other Umrah essentials for ladies as well, which include:

  • Five to ten light and breathable hijabs
  • Hijab undercaps
  • Hijab pins
  • Hair accessories
  • Socks
  • Slips or light clothing for wearing under abaya
  • Light pyjamas
  • Blister patches

4. Basic First-aid Kit: Just in case

Basic medicines and first-aid items are also important parts of the Umrah essentials list. These include cold and flu relief drugs, pain-relief tablets, travel sickness medications, cough syrups/throat lozenges, diarrhoea tablets, bandages, fragrance-free sunblock, cotton, antiseptic cream, muscle pain relief creams, oral rehydration salts and antibiotics. In light of COVID-19 precautionary guidelines, also carry masks and sanitiser bottles.

5. Self-care essentials: Everyday items for the Umrah journey

Self care essentials can include a lot of things ranging from hygiene essentials to vanity products. These may include:

  • Large and small towels
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste (Fragrance-free for Ihram)
  • Unscented shampoo and conditioner
  • Fragrance-free soap (bar or liquid form)
  • Pocket tissues
  • Fragrance-free wet wipes for Ihram
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Hairbrush/comb (only to be used outside the Ihram state)
  • Anti-perspirant
  • Small mirror
  • Nail cutter
  • Small scissors
  • Razors or shaving machine
  • Sanitary pads
  • Unscented moisturiser or cream
  • Toiletries bag
  • Alarm clock
  • Notebook and pen
  • Empty water bottle for filling it with ZamZam as it is important to remain properly hydrated at all times.
  • Sleeping accessories (including inflatable pillow, bedsheet and a sleeping bag)
  • Snacks and packets of juices

6. Electronics: A few gadgets that you will need on the go

Carrying a smartphone is important for the Umrah journey as it helps pilgrims stay in touch with their families and friends. However, before embarking on the journey, it is important to ensure that the phone is unlocked. It is also advisable to purchase local sim cards at the earliest. Some other packing essentials for Umrah are a universal travel adaptor, mobile phone charger, power bank, kindle or tablet, headphones/earphones, wristwatch and flashlight.

Umrah being a major religious journey in Islam should be conducted with great sincerity. Therefore, one should not miss out on any essential components and prepare for the journey in advance. One can take help from online guides and Ministry of Hajj and Umrah sites to get updates on the latest circulars and dates for Umrah.

A travel list is never complete. So if you think we have missed an indispensable Umrah essential, please let us know in the comments below.

Umrah Essentials FAQs

What things are needed for Umrah?

These include Passport (and its photocopies), Flight tickets, Identity Proofs (and photocopies), Certificates of vaccinations done, Hotel booking vouchers, Transport vouchers, Receipts of payments made for Hajj/Umrah, Relationship certificate if traveling with a companion.

What do you wear for Umrah?

Prior to going into Ihram (a condition of blessedness during Hajj and Umrah), Muslim men commonly wear Western apparel or conventional clothing from their nations of origin. Ladies should dress safely in long, baggy attire, and cover their hair with a hijab rather than a free scarf.

What is the process of Umrah?

Umrah expects Muslims to perform two key ceremonies, Tawaf and Saee. Tawaf is a circle around the Kaaba. This is trailed by Saee among Safa and Marwah in the Great Mosque of Makkah, a stroll to celebrate Hagar quest for water for her child and God kindness in noting supplications.

How many days does it take to do Umrah?

The whole custom should take somewhere in the range of 3 and 6 hours. However, no Umrah bundle goes on for under seven days. You become the visitor of your Supreme Creator for somewhere around a week and for up to 90 days, the most extreme permitted stay on an Umrah visa.

Can one carry scented soaps and perfumes on Umrah?

No, one should carry unscented soaps on the journey of Umrah.

How should one dress up for Umrah?

One should make sure to dress according to the guidelines provided by the authority of Umrah and should not wear revealing clothes.

Dr Omar Ayoub

Dr. Omar Ayoub is a tech enthusiast and a part time researcher and accounts authorship of several international publications. He holds a PhD in Computer Science from USA and has an experience of more than 10 years in Saudi Arabia working in tourism, hospitality, education, technology and retail sector. His interests include traveling, writing, and exploring trending technologies.

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