Umrah: (Part 1) – The Preparation

We finally got invited to His house!  We are about to embark on one of the most important journeys of our life, Insha’Allah. To be honest, it still feels surreal, and I’m overwhelmed with excitement and nervousness.

“And accomplish the Hajj and the Umrah for the sake of Allah.”  (Al Quran 2:196)

Our planning for Umrah began late last year, when Masood and I seriously considered making this journey with our family. Our purpose is to worship, reflect, repent for our sins, and prepare for Hajj, InshaAllah, by familiarising ourselves with the place and rituals.

It was only a few days ago—when Masood showed us our passports with the Saudi Arabia visa—that it all started to sink in. I stared at the visa for the longest time: Allah has finally blessed us with the opportunity to visit the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah! Here in my hands, in the form of this visa, I am holding an invitation from Him to visit baytullah, or Allah’s house. For without His will, this would never have been possible.

But before we got our visas, there were certain formalities. First, we went to a local hospital and got the mandatory vaccine for meningitis – free of charge. All they asked for was our passport copy with the U.A.E. resident permit sticker. They handed us a stamped yellow card, as proof.

Next, we approached a registered travel agent to arrange for our visas. They took our passports, the yellow card, passport-sized photographs, marriage contract, No Objection Certificates (NOC) from our visa sponsors (our employers), and visa charges (AED 300/person). We had also asked them to arrange for our hotel reservations. Masood went to collect our visas a week later.

We are flying with Nas Air, Saudi’s first budget airline. Initially, we contemplated going to Saudi Arabia by bus. There are several huge, comfortable buses travelling regularly from Dubai to Jeddah, and is obviously much more cheaper than flying. But the 36-hour journey might leave us exhausted, too tired to devote our mental and physical selves entirely to worship and prayers.

I also bought myself a new abaya.  But these were the physical preparations.

Since early March, I have been spending hours reading about Umrah and the history behind Hajj and Umrah. I Googled up blogs and read through people’s experiences. I also watched countless videos on Youtube relating to the Umrah and Hajj. With each post or article that I read and with each video that I watch, my excitement grows. And so does my apprehension.

How will I feel when I see the Ka’aba for the first time? Will I be able to remember and perform the rituals accurately? Will I be able to focus completely on my prayers? I have so much to ask from Him, will I recall each and every thing? Will I be able to make the most out of this short trip?  Will Allah accept my Umrah and forgive my sins?

We are leaving this Thursday and shall return by Monday evening (Sharjah – Madinah – Makkah – Jeddah – Sharjah) Insha’Allah.

I’ll be writing posts about our trip, Insha’Allah, and will try taking loads of pictures to share with you all.


  1. I am equally excited for this wonderful and blessed trip from the day I landed here in the UAE, but somehow could’nt make it. Now I understand that Allah subhanawata’la wanted me to visit with the whole family. Alhumdulillah for His kind blessings. May Allah accept our Umrah and give us the opportunity to perform Hajj very soon..Aameen.

    Ameen! I’m so happy and excited that we’re all going together, Alhumdulillah.

  2. Salam Nadia,
    Congratulation! This is a lovely news. I wish you all the blessings, and may all the process goes smooth. Enjoy your time! and please say a little pray for me =) my greetings to Mecca and Medina. I pray for you! and patiently waiting for your journal of the trip! All the Best for you Both!

    Walaikum Assalam, dearest sister! Thank you so much for your duas and wishes. InshaAllah, I’ll be praying for you.

  3. Masha’Allah! Thanks for sharing this piece of lovely news! Alhamdulillah!!! I’m so happy for you! The experiences I had overwhelmed me, and I hope that you’ll gain immeasurable experiences as well. May Allah S.W.T offer you numerous blessings and keep your entire family safe throughout this blissful occasion!

    Ameen to your dua! Thank you so much, dear sister. May Allah reward you for your kindness.

  4. Alhamdulillah. Congratulations!

    Have a safe, enjoyable, and fulfilling trip. And I look forward to seeing all those pictures and your witty brand of commentary!

    BTW, do you wear niqab/abaya in the UAE too, or just hijab?

    Umrah maqboola Inshallah wa taqabbal allah ta3atkum

    Ameen! And thank you so much. I observe the hijab and, most often than not, I wear an abaya.

  5. Inshallah..your experience will be rewarding. They say, “The first time you see Kaaba (be it from any angle), and the first dua you make – it will definitely be accepted.”

    Do talk about your experiences when you return and make dua for all of the Muslim brothers and sisters.

    I already have a dua for that special first glimpse, hopefully I’d remember it when the time comes 🙂 I have a long list of prayers for everyone and InshaAllah I’ll keep everyone in mind.

  6. Thats a very happy news!

    May you be blessed on each step of your journey!

    Do pray for me, sister, when you’ll be around all the sacred places, going through all the idabaat and collecting the blessings of Allah, Almighty.
    I’ll be so expecting that!

    Bless you! 🙂

    Ameen to your dua! InshaAllah, I will.

  7. Alhamdulillah, your family and yourself are sure gonna go for a very meaningful journey together! I can feel your excitement! 😀 InshaAllah, everything will go smoothly and soon we shall be reading your post on your Umrah experience.

    Thank you so much, Nisa! 🙂

  8. Wonderful news! May Allah guide you to fulfill all the manasik of umrah and make it an iman-raising experience.

    When i saw the kaaba for the first time as a 14yrs old, i just broke down in tears. I was surprised and embarrassed at my own reaction! Up till that point, i was not even particular about offering my daily five prayers. But, seeing the Kaaba just had that effect. SubhanaAllah.

    I don’t know how much you have already learned on the rites of umrah, but following are some reliable sources:

    * Hajj/Umrah guide book – Shk Uthaymeen:
    * Hajj/Umrah guide book – Shk. al Albaani:
    * Hajj guide video by Muhammad Salah:
    * Hajj Coaching video by Muhammad al Shareef:
    * Umrah Guide Leaflet by Muhammad alShareef:
    * Umrah/Hajj Q & A by Muhammad Salah:
    * Umrah Q & A:,q,a

    Ameen to your dua! And thank you so much for providing those links. I’ll be going through each one of them tonight, InshaAllah. I want to read as much as I can – authentic sources only, of course – so that I can perform the manasik with properly and avoid mistakes, InshaAllah.

  9. Congratulations on the trip.

    From what I remember, the time immediately after Asr or late in the night (2 am) was best for less crowds (approaching the Black Stone) etc. This was some time ago though.

    Thank you! That is exactly what we have planned: to perform our Umrah between 2-5 am.

  10. Inshallah , u vl have grt blessings from Almighty & i pray ur duas vl come true.

    happy to hear that u guys are coming to saudi 🙂

    have a safe journey & include me in ur dua’s


    Walaikum Assalam. Ameen to your dua!

  11. WOW yeh that was the only word came into ma mind after reading your post….

    masallah masallah…. u r blessed….

    dont forget to pray for me 🙂

    looking forward to hear more from you…

    get some pics too if possible

    Thank you so much, sis! I’ll pray for you, InshaAllah. I do have plans to take tons of pictures.

  12. Until today I was knowing only about the pilgrimage of Hajj… I think that’s a wonderful opportunity for you, and even a big blessing, being able to share this experience with your family…
    It’ s like I’m feeling the emotion of the preparations: this highly spiritual travel to Mekkah sounds very fascinating to me (a non-Muslima reader), and I wonder how more exciting it should be for you, arriving to accomplish what your religion asks! I send my best wishes to you all: may God accept all your truly-grieved prayers, give you joy, and guide you all. I stay and wait for so many beautiful pictures : p

    Thank you so much, Francesca; it’s so sweet of you 🙂 You’re 100% right on the excitement part!

  13. May God accept all your prayers and sacrifices. God bless! Please include us to your prayers even Im not muslim.

    Of course, Serene – I’ve included all my friends in the list (don’t want to miss anyone). And thank you so much.

  14. Asalaamualaykum warahmatullah ukhti Nadia,

    mashaa Allah, tabarakAllah! I am so excited for you, may Allah make this journey you are embarking one full of blessings and one that will change your life for the better, may Allah accept your Umrah and all your Ibadah, ameen. May you come back stronger than before, and may Allah grant you a place in Janatul Firdos.

    One request, if I may! To please make du’aa for me that Allah keeps my heart steadfast upon His Deen and that He calls me back to His House once again. Ameen

    Takecare my sis,

    Your sister Qamar

    Walaikum Assalam warahmatullah, sis Qamar. Ameen to your dua! I have taken several print outs of the Umrah leaflets that you had created, and distributed them among my family members. We’ll keep it as reference so that we don’t forget any dua, InshaAllah. May Allah reward you and sister Parveen for your efforts. Ameen. InshaAllah, I’ll make dua for you and your family.

  15. Congratulations! May Allah put lots of blessing in it for you two. I so wanna go too!! Please remember to pray for me. I’m not making it an obligation but only a request; if you remember, please do 🙂

    Ameen and thank you so much, dear Specs! I’ll pray for you, InshaAllah. May Allah bless you and all our ummah the privilege to visit and worship in His house.

  16. May Allah keep u both smiling and qabool kare.. Mein bhi soch raha hoon ke jaldi se ho aon wahan se hmm feel ke really need to now 🙂 Keep smiling and do dua for bholi n mum.. if yaad raha to 🙂

    Ameen! I agree, aap bhi Umrah karlein, much better if it’s during Ramadan. InshaAllah, bilkul yaad raheyga – both aap ki mom and bholi 🙂

  17. May God accept your prayers.
    Please pray for me to be blessed by the Almighty to visit HIS most holy home.
    Please do it when you are there at 2am.

    God bless you

    Ameen! Allah hum sab ko umrah aur haj ki saadat ata farmaaye.

  18. this is so good mashAllah.
    pray for me and pray that what i am praying for gets accepted by Him.

    InshaAllah, may Allah accept your dua.

  19. Dear Friends,

    Good news doesn’t stay a Secret Long. We would like to inform you that during Hajj / Umrah , we are offering following services:

    Umrah 5 , 4 , 3 Star Package Services

    Hotel Bookings & Reservations

    Transportation Umrah Package

    Shopping Trips to Jeddah / Sea Side

    Ground Support & Handling

    Meet & Assist with Ziyarats

    Flights from Jeddah to Madinah

    We hope you will accept these offers and look forward to welcome you very soon. If you need any more information, please feel free to contact us any time of your convenience.

    Satisfying customers is our most important goal.

    Zubair Sadiq
    Umrah Department
    Al Yamama Umrah Co.
    Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
    Ph : 00966 2 6526666 Ext : 241
    Fax : 00966 2 6504286
    Cell : 00966 556678333
    E-Mail : /

  20. Congratulations on your Umra trip. Indeed you are lucky to live so close by you can go anytime you want. May I request you say a prayer for me and my family when you are there? Thanks! 😀

    Thank you. Living close by is an advantage, but not necessarily guarantee that one can perform umrah and hajj unless Allah wills. Masood has been living here for the past 5 years and myself for 2 years, yet it’s only this year that Allah blessed us with this wonderful opportunity, alhumdulillah.

    Your request has been granted.

  21. Subhan Allah! Please remember me and my family in your prayers as well. I hope that the trip is a safe and memorable for you. I remember my first Umrah before my marriage – It changed my entire way of thinking about Allah! Going to His house for the first time has a really strong effect on a muslim. I realised then for the first time how small and insignificant I am in this universe. 🙂

    It was indeed a safe and memorable trip for both me and my family, Alhumdulillah.

  22. Hi! Just came across your blog and I love it 🙂
    I am about to do Umrah too inshallah, in 2 weeks or so, and I am incredibly excited. Looking forward to hearing about your experience!

    Welcome to the blog, Sis! MashaAllah, may your Umrah be a rewarding experience for you and may Allah accept our deeds. Ameen.

  23. May Allah give us all the opportunity to perform Hajj lovely comments. may Allah keep you safe and god-fearing Ameen

    Ameen to your dua!

  24. Islam is a Religion of Love and Peace The definition of Islam. The root of the word Islam, refers to “making peace, being in a mutually peaceful environment”.

  25. Asalam o Alaikum Nice Informative article i had ever seen so interesting and increasing our knowledge about performing Hajj and Umrah May Allah give a chance all the Muslim to go Hajj and Umrah.

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