Those embarking upon Hajj or Umrah are embarking upon a Journey of life time – a Journey like none other! They must prepare mentally, physically, emotionally and most importantly spiritually. Allah says:
“And take a provision (with you) for the journey, but the best provision is At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness, etc.).
So fear Me, O men of understanding!” (Quran 2:197)
So what ever you do don’t leave this behind!
Below a list has been compiled for preparation before leaving for Hajj or Umrah:
- Islamic things to learn
- Islamic things to do
- General things to do
- Issues and Questions to ask our Travel Agent
- Things to take/buy
Islamic things to learn
- What is Hajj, its history
- Why are we going to perform Hajj/Umrah
- What are the rewards of Hajj/Umrah
- How to perform Hajj/Umrah – its pillars, obligatory and sunnah actions (books, audio, videos, seminars) – the Prophet Muhammad (s) said: “Take yor hajj rites from me”
- Learn the relevant dua’s
- What violates the state of Ihram
- Review our prayers (Salah) and purification (Wudu)
- Ettiquettes of Duaa
- Wiping over our socks instead of washing our feet for wudu (know its rulings)
- Tayammum – when one does not have access to water (know its rulings)
- Janaza Salah (there are a lot of funeral prayers in both the Holy Masaajid)
- Learn how to perform Witr prayer
- Learn how to pray in congregation
- Learn the rulings to the travellers prayer
Islamic things to do
- Update/Make an Islamic Will
- Build on and improve on our ibadah (worship)
- 5 daily prayers on time: Build our relationship with Allah, seeking alot of forgiveness and making alot of dua (especially asking Allah to grant us a Mabrur Hajj / Umrah (one which is accepted)
- Purify our hearts from any bad habits or any action displeasing to Allah
- Purify our tongues – by speaking good, reduce idle talk and increase in dhikr
- Try to do the optional fasts (e.g. Monday & Thursday / middle 3 days of month)
- Try and pray Tahajjud (the night prayer)
- Build on your Taqwaa (consciousness of Allah(SWT)
- that He is watching us /Fearing Allah /Staying away from all that He has forbidden, etc.
- Reciting the Quran and reflecting upon its meaning and implementing them /Learn about Jannah and Jahannum, etc.
- Increase our Emaan (faith)
- Constantly renew your intentions to why you are going for Hajj – it is a duty we owe to Allah, we are going to please Allah alone
- Build on being patient
- Maintain a positive attitude
- Say Alhamdulillah for the good and bad
- Think of those in worse situations
- Make dhikr and istighfar when in difficult situation
- Increase on your love for Allah and His Nabi (S) by studying the life of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and the stories of the Sahaba and how they sacrificed their everything for Islam (their wealth, health, status, time and even lives)
General Things to do
- Pay off any outstanding debts (if possible)
- Make peace with those we have had a misunderstanding, dispute or fallen out with, or are not on speaking terms etc.
- Ask forgiveness from those whom we have wronged (remember a Muslim does should not let 3 days go by without giving salaam to your fellow Muslim)
- Finish all important jobs and tasks that need doing before leaving for Hajj
- Book with a Travel Agent
- Photographs for VISA
- Process and obtain VISA
- Vacinations, Meningitis Jab, Flue Jab etc – Obtain certificates
Questions and Issues to ask your Travel Agent
- Get references from others for the travel agents
- Flight dates / journey
- What’s the itinary / program
- How many bathrooms per room?
- On which floor is our room?
- Do the rooms have air conditioning, fridge?
- Do the receptionists speak English?
- During the Hajj days, what type of food will be provided to us?
- Hotel names
- When will we move to Azziyah?
- What which day will our group go to Makkah to perform Tawaf Ifadah? Is transport provided
- How far is our Hotel from Masjid al haram and Masjid an nabawi?
- What are the arrangements for our Animal Sacrifice (Hady)?
- Does anyone in our group speak English, who will translate the hajj khutbah to us?
- What airline are we flying on?
There are many more questions one can ask, please refer to the book “Getting the best out of Al Hajj” – written by Ismail Davids (publisher company – Darrusalaam)
Things to take / buy
Below are just suggestions of things to take with you to Hajj. They are not all necesary items – individually pick and choose what you feel is best suitable. Don’t forget to pack bags of Taqwaa, Patience and your best of manners/behaviour! You will soon be a guest of Allah at His House!
- Hand Luggage – Essentials to take (Max 5kg, Dimensions: H 56cm x W 45cm x D 25cm)
NOTE: Everybody has black suitcases, so try and take one that is not black OR have a fluorescent tape /tag /ribbon attached so its easily recognisable.
- Pocket Qur’an, dua books
- Hajj/umrah books
- MP3 player
- Pen and pencil
- Musalla (i.e. prayer mat)
Clothes & Accessories
- Ihram * 2
- Waist pouch
- Folding umbrella
- Extra clothing
Toiletries and medicines
- Tooth brush
- Tooth paste
- Toilet paper
- Soap * 2
- Shower gel + shampoo bottle – Simple range are perfume free
- Vaseline (small)
- Nail cutter
- Any regular medication you take
- Small scissors
- Towels – 2 large, 2 small
- Disposable razors
- Plastic soap dish
- Cream/balm eg E45 – for cracked skin on heels
- Passport inc visa
- Medical certificates – vaccinations
- Spare glasses (if necessary)
- Suitcase locks + keys
- Mobile phone
- Phone charger
- Emergency contact numbers
- Small stringed bag (for sandals/stones)
- Universal adapter
- Spare Luggage tags
- Carrier bags
- Photocopy of passport
- Plastic zippered sandwich bags – to keep items secure and dry
- Snack bars
- Travel alarm clock
- Sleeping bag
- 1 heavy sheet
- Inflatable pillow